MLB

Cardinals-Brewers Preview

Losing one's staff ace to injury obviously isn't ideal, but with the way St. Louis' starting rotation has looked, the Cardinals seem to be equipped to handle this setback.

Lance Lynn looks to continue his dominance over the Milwaukee Brewers as the Cardinals go for a three-game sweep Sunday.

St. Louis (12-4) leads the majors with a 1.97 ERA from its starters, with the rotation yielding a run or less in the team's nine wins in the last 10 games. The Cardinals have not had a smaller ERA from their starters in their first 16 games since it was at 1.78 in 1943.

Adam Wainwright shut the Brewers down for the first four innings Saturday to lower his ERA to 1.44 but suffered an ankle injury while stumbling out of the batter's box leading off the fifth and had to be helped off the field. He was wearing a walking boot after the 5-3 win and will be re-evaluated when the Cardinals return to St. Louis.

''It's something in the back of my ankle so we'll see what it is on Monday,'' said Wainwright, baseball's leader with 41 wins since 2013. ''Everything right now is just all speculation.''

The next man up for St. Louis is Lynn (1-1, 1.56 ERA), who leads the majors in April wins since 2012, going 13-2 with a 2.58 ERA in 18 starts.

He has allowed one earned run in each of his first three starts but was a little shaky Tuesday, issuing four walks in 6 1-3 innings of a 2-1, 10-inning loss in Washington.

He was better against the Brewers six days earlier, yielding six hits in five innings of a 4-2 win to improve to 4-0 with a 1.49 ERA in his last seven starts in the series. He has allowed one earned run or less in five of his six starts at Miller Park, posting a 0.93 ERA in winning his last three there.

The Cardinals are 17-5 in Milwaukee since 2013, but winning at Miller Park these days isn't particularly notable - unless it's the Brewers (3-15).

Milwaukee, 2-10 at home, is last in the NL with eight homers and a .317 slugging percentage and is 2 for 18 with runners in scoring position in the first two games of this series.

A couple of Brewers have given Lynn trouble, though, with Jean Segura 9 for 20 with a double and triple and Gerardo Parra 9 for 19 with two homers, three doubles and two triples.

Segura had three hits Saturday and is 9 for 21 with two doubles against the Cardinals this season.

St. Louis' Matt Holliday, batting .358, hit his first homer Saturday while Matt Carpenter doubled again and extended his hitting streak to 12 games. Carpenter is batting .423 with 10 doubles and 10 RBIs during his run and is 10 for 23 with six doubles against the Brewers this year.

Neither has enjoyed much success against Mike Fiers (0-3, 6.75), however, with Holliday 1 for 11 and Carpenter 2 for 14.

Fiers gave up two runs and seven hits in 5 2-3 innings in a 4-0 loss to the Cardinals on April 16, but has a 9.00 ERA in losing his other two outings - both at home. Against Cincinnati on Tuesday, the right-hander permitted eight runs - four earned - on a pair of grand slams in four innings of a 16-10 loss.

''Things definitely haven't been going my way," he said. "I need to be better. I don't know what else to say.''

Another matchup with the Cardinals could help. In five career starts versus St. Louis, Fiers has a 1.72 ERA.

Promoted Stories
Comments

More MLB