National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, June 29th
(All times Eastern)
Pittsburgh Pirates (40-35) at St. Louis Cardinals (40-36), 8:15 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Pittsburgh - Kevin Correia (3-6, 4.03)
St. Louis - Adam Wainwright (6-7, 4.32)
(Sports Network) - The St. Louis Cardinals are back home for a 10-game stay
and will host the NL Central-rival Pittsburgh Pirates tonight in the opener of
a three-game series at Busch Stadium.
The Cardinals and Pirates are currently jockeying for position in the division
standings, as Pittsburgh sits one game behind Cincinnati for the lead and St.
Louis is only one-half game out of second place.
St. Louis went 6-3 on its recent road trip, but had a five-game winning streak
stopped with Wednesday's 5-3 loss to the Miami Marlins. Tony Cruz homered and
David Freese added two hits and an RBI in defeat. Joe Kelly pitched well in
the start and did not record a decision with six innings of two-run ball.
Sam Freeman allowed the go-ahead run in the seventh inning to absorb the loss.
"Five consecutive wins is always a positive," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny
said. "They guys need to remember that. That was a good run."
Hoping to get the Cardinals back on track Friday will be Adam Wainwright. He
has won four of his last six decisions and pitched well in his previous
outing, an 8-2 win at Kansas City on Saturday. Wainwright held the Royals to
two runs in seven innings to improve to 6-7 in 15 starts with a 4.32 ERA.
Wainwright, a right-hander, defeated Pittsburgh on May 1 this season and
yielded four runs in seven innings of a 10-7 victory. He is 8-3 with a 4.79
ERA in 18 career meetings (14 starts) with the Pirates.
St. Louis will also entertain Colorado and Miami on the residency. Cardinals
outfielder Carlos Beltran is one hit away from 2,000 in his career. He also
needs one home run for 200 in the National League.
Meanwhile, the Pirates split a four-game series in Philadelphia to begin a
seven-game road trip and recorded a 5-4 win Thursday afternoon.
Pittsburgh set the tone early with five runs in the first inning, as Casey
McGehee hit a three-run homer and Pedro Alvarez clubbed a solo homer in the
decisive opening frame. Garrett Jones had two hits and an RBI for the Pirates,
winners in eight of their last 12 games.
The five runs were enough to give A.J. Burnett the win, as he limited the
Phillies to three runs in 6 2/3 innings for his eighth straight win. Joel
Hanrahan later posted his 20th save in the ninth inning.
Pittsburgh will send Kevin Correia to the mound Friday and he is 1-0 with a
1.59 ERA over his last two starts. Correia did not figure into the decision of
a 3-2 loss to Detroit on Sunday and permitted a pair of runs and six hits in
six innings of work.
Correia, who is just 3-6 in 14 starts with a 4.03 ERA, will try to even his
career record against the Cardinals tonight. The right-hander is 2-3 with a
3.86 ERA in 13 career games, six of which have been starts, against St. Louis.
The Pirates have lost four of six matchups with St. Louis this season and 10
of the past 14 meetings in this series.
06/29 10:37:48 ET