National League Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, May 7th (All times Eastern)
St. Louis Cardinals (17-17) at Atlanta Braves (18-14), 7:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: St. Louis - Adam Wainwright (5-2, 2.16) Atlanta - Mike Minor (0-1, 3.00)
(SportsNetwork.com) - Adam Wainwright tries to bounce back from his worst outing of the season on Wednesday night as the St. Louis Cardinals wrap up a three-game series with the Atlanta Braves.
Wainwright carried a four-start winning streak into Friday's outing versus the Chicago Cubs, but took a 6-5 loss as he yielded all six runs, a season high. The righty also was touched for 10 hits and his five innings resulted in his shortest outing of the season.
The Cardinals hope it was just a small bump for Wainwright, who was coming off three straight scoreless outings, a span in which he gave up just nine hits and five walks over 24 innings.
"I left a lot of balls in the middle of the plate," said Wainwright, whose 25- inning scoreless string didn't last beyond Chicago's first turn at the plate. "I did that last time I pitched against them, too, so I don't think there's a coincidence -- or I don't think there's a meaning behind it, it's just a weird coincidence."
Wainwright, 32, fell to 5-2 on the season with a 2.16 earned run average and is 7-2 lifetime versus the Braves with a 2.80 ERA in 12 meetings. All but three of those have been starts.
Atlanta counters with Mike Minor, who will make his second start of the campaign following a bout with left shoulder tendinitis.
The lefty made his season debut on Friday, but took a tough-luck 2-1 loss to the San Francisco Giants. Minor yielded seven hits without a walk over six innings, but was tagged for a pair of solo homers.
Still, the outing should leave the 26-year-old encouraged and Atlanta would take plenty more like it.
"He gave up a couple of solo home runs, but other than that he threw the ball really well for his first time out," Atlanta catcher Gerald Laird said of Minor. "If he continues to pitch like that all year, he's going to win a lot of games."
Minor is unbeaten in four previous meetings with the Cardinals, going 2-0 despite a 4.56 ERA.
Atlanta's rotation got another brief boost in last night's 2-1 victory as Gavin Floyd made his first start in a year following Tommy John surgery. He was solid in a no-decision, giving up one run over seven innings.
"Very grateful to have this opportunity to be able to play baseball again and let me get back out there," said Floyd, who is expected to shift to the bullpen following the spot start. "A lot of emotions and a lot of excitement, the whole process leading up to this."
Justin Upton hit a solo homer and later scored the winning run on Chris Johnson's RBI single in the eighth inning.
The Braves snapped a seven-game losing streak despite plating three runs or fewer for a fifth straight game and for the eighth time in their last nine.
Matt Holliday drove in the lone run of the game for the Cardinals, who had won their previous two coming in and dipped to 2-3 on a nine-game road trip.
Tyler Lyons gave up a run on four hits and struck out seven while walking one in six innings of action.
"He pitched really, really good," said Holliday about Lyons. "He kept them off balance and pitched really well. We're not scoring many runs for him and it's unfortunate. We didn't give him any support."
Atlanta went 4-3 against the Cards last season, sweeping a three-game series at home.
05/07 10:29:36 ET