National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Wednesday, June 6th
(All times Eastern)
St. Louis Cardinals (28-27) at Houston Astros (23-31), 8:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: St. Louis - Adam Wainwright (4-6, 4.98)
Houston - Bud Norris (5-2, 4.52)
(Sports Network) - Adam Wainwright looked to be rounding into his 20-game form
with two brilliant outings to close out May.
Then came June.
Now, Wainwright looks to rebound from one of his worst starts of the season as
the St. Louis Cardinals resume a three-game series with the Houston Astros.
Following a 19-win campaign in 2009, the right-handed Wainwright went 20-11
with a 2.42 earned run average in 33 starts two seasons ago, finishing second
in National League Cy Young voting. However, he missed all of last season
after undergoing Tommy John surgery.
The 30-year-old was just 2-5 with a 5.77 ERA through his first eight starts of
the season, but impressed with a four-hit shutout of the Padres on May 22. He
followed up that nine-strikeout performance with six innings of one-run ball
to beat the Phillies on May 27.
Looking for a third straight win, Wainwright instead was on the other end of
Johan Santana's no-hitter last Friday as St. Louis dropped an 8-0 decision to
New York. Wainwright himself allowed seven runs on six hits and three walks
over 6 1/3 frames, but wasn't too down on himself afterwards.
"I felt great tonight. I was locating and my stuff was pretty sharp. It was
probably to oddest seven runs I've ever given up," said Wainwright, who
dropped to 4-6 with a 4.98 ERA on the season.
Wainwright did beat Houston on May 6 at home, allowing only one run over seven
innings of work. That upped his career numbers against the Astros to 10-1 with
a 1.54 ERA in 18 games (12 starts).
The Astros will also be looking for their starter to bounce back tonight as
Bud Norris tries to avoid a second straight defeat.
The right-hander had won four straight starts before not factoring into a
decision against the Dodgers on May 26. He lasted 4 2/3 frames, charged with
three runs, eight hits and four walks.
Things didn't go any better for Norris five days later in Colorado, drilled
for nine runs on seven hits and three walks while recording just five outs.
Norris also struggled through a sore hip flexor he aggravated early on in the
Norris fell to 5-2 with a 4.52 ERA in 11 starts this season after the road
setback though he is 3-0 with a 1.60 in five outings at home.
The 27-year-old picked up a win over the Cardinals back on May 5 as he allowed
only one unearned run over six innings on three hits and four walks. He
improved to 7-2 with a 2.17 ERA in 11 career starts against St. Louis.
Houston held off a St. Louis rally to take Tuesday's opener 9-8. The Astros
plated six runs through the game's first four innings, with Chris Snyder
highlighting a four-run first with a single that chased home two runners
before Justin Maxwell's two-run homer in the second.
Jose Altuve added four hits and scored three runs for the Astros, who have won
two straight following an eight-game slide.
The Cardinals made things interesting by plating four runs in the ninth. Adron
Chambers hit a two-run triple off David Carpenter and closer Brett Myers then
entered the game and allowed a two-run homer to Rafael Furcal.
Myers, though, was able to record the final two outs for his 14th save of the
"Any time you win a game like that it's huge," said Astros manager Brad Mills.
"Of course you want to keep the momentum and not have it be so close, but the
bats came through for us and Myers locked it down."
Matt Adams hit a three-run homer in defeat, the Cardinals' sixth in seven
games. Jaime Garcia lasted just two innings as he was tagged for six runs on
five hits with two walks. He had skipped his last scheduled start due to left
"I'm going to have to get some things looked at because I'm struggling right
now," said Garcia. "But I have to more forward if I want to get out of this
and scratch out some wins for the team."
The Astros have won six of their past nine versus the Cardinals, including
two of three at home in early May.
06/06 10:48:58 ET