Preview: Brewers at Cardinals
If one’s tastes run toward rainouts, Busch Stadium is your go-to destination this spring.
For the fourth time in the season’s first 4 1/2 weeks, the St. Louis Cardinals had to postpone a game. With the potential of an inch or two of rain Wednesday, they opted to push back their scheduled home game with the Milwaukee Brewers to a date to be determined.
What’s more, St. Louis has also pushed back the start time of Thursday’s series finale from 12:45 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. CT, although the projected hourly forecast doesn’t offer much hope. As of Wednesday afternoon, weather.com called for at least an 80 percent chance of rain from 6 a.m. Thursday to 2 a.m. Friday.
A 10-game homestand has been cut to no more than eight contests as a result of this rainout. Even the one series the Cardinals were able to get played in full — last week’s three-game set with Toronto — featured a day-night doubleheader after a postponement on April 26.
Should the weather clear to allow baseball on Thursday night, there is plenty at stake for both teams. St. Louis (13-13) can wrap up a winning homestand at 5-3 if it can take what’s now the rubber game of the series, while Milwaukee (14-14) can snap a 17-series losing streak to the Cardinals.
Dating to 2014, the Brewers have lost 15 series and split two against their National League Central rivals.
“It’s about getting wins,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said after Tuesday night’s 2-1 loss to St. Louis. “That’s what it’s about. And it’s about playing well and getting guys to their best selves. For every team, winning and hope is a big deal.”
Milwaukee marches its top pitcher in April, right-hander Chase Anderson (2-0, 2.10 ERA), to the mound. Anderson is coming off a no-decision Friday night in the Brewers’ 10-8 home loss to Atlanta, allowing four runs off four hits and three walks in six innings with two strikeouts.
While Anderson has pitched well in his career against the Cardinals, he’s yet to score a win in six starts. He’s 0-2 with a 2.10 earned run average, which includes an April 22 start that saw him allow no earned runs over six innings, yet settle for a no-decision in a game St. Louis rallied to win 4-1.
Adam Wainwright (2-3, 6.12) gets the call for the Cardinals. He’s coming off consecutive wins, including a 6-4 decision last Thursday against Toronto in which he pitched a season-high 6 1/3 innings. Wainwright scattered nine hits and allowed four runs with a walk and four strikeouts.
Milwaukee has been a favorite foil for Wainwright over the years, as he’s gone 15-8 with a 2.19 ERA in 29 starts and 36 total appearances. His first win this year was at the Brewers’ expense, as he whiffed nine in five innings on April 21 in a 6-3 verdict.
“I never had stuff like that one game last year,” he said following that victory. “Even if I’d throw a complete-game shutout, I was just making stuff up out there last year. This year, I have great stuff. I have to be more efficient.”