The Cardinals come into Tuesday’s matchup with the Padres riding a two game winning streak and taking a series from the Cubs thanks to their major league leading 18th shutout of the season. The Padres, meanwhile, look to leave Atlanta with a split as they play at noon on Monday. The Padres and Cardinals have two of the worst offenses in the MLB so this series could boost either sides pitching statistics.
Tuesday’s matchup of Tyson Ross (9-10) vs. Lance Lynn (11-7) should include a fair amount of strikeouts as Ross K’d a career high 11 in six innings in his last start and Lynn has compiled 8.29 K/9 this season. With the games being played in the spacious Petco Park, this game could come down to speed. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Kolten Wong and Peter Bourjos make the difference.
Prediction: Cards win 4-2; Bourjos and Wong both have two hits and split 3 stolen bases between them.
Wednesday’s pairing of Jesse Hahn (6-2) vs. Joe Kelly (2-1) sports two young hurlers that have been very impressive early on in their careers. Kelly has struggled since his return from the DL and gave up five earned in 4+ innings in his last start against the Cubs. Hahn, on the other hand, has been excellent all season, maintaining a 2.12 ERA, while going 6-2 for a Padres team that has struggled to win games this season.
Prediction: Padres take this one 4-3; Kelly recovers and goes six innings here, but the Cards are unable to figure out the young Hahn as they continue to struggle when facing rookie pitchers in their first game against them.
Thrusday’s finale slates Odrisamer Despaigne (2-2) against Shelby Miller (7-8). Miller stopped a rough patch in his last start by going 5+ innings and giving up just two earned. Miller didn’t get the win, but he allowed just three hits and kept the Cardinals in a game in which they would eventually win. Despaigne is coming off of a loss in which he went just 3.2 innings and gave up five runs (2 ER) in a 5-3 loss.
Prediction: Cardinals keep Despaigne’s rough patch going by knocking him out by the fifth and compiling 6 runs in an 8-4 victory. Shelby Miller strikes out 6 to raise his disturbingly low K/9.
Meanwhile, the Brewers drop two of three to the surging Rays and begin their series with the Cardinals on Thursday just one game up in the central division.