Cards Making Run

Success on a just-completed homestand put the St. Louis Cardinals in position to make a run at the two top teams in the weak NL Central.

The Cardinals will have their chance when they begin a seven-game road trip, starting Tuesday in the opener of a three-game set against the division-leading Milwaukee Brewers.

St. Louis (55-60) routed the Los Angeles Dodgers 12-2 on Sunday to finish a 5-2 homestand. Though still below .500, the third-place Cardinals are 5 1/2 games behind Milwaukee and four back of the second-place Chicago Cubs, who will host St. Louis for four games starting Friday.

"We have a chance to make up for a lot of the bad baseball we've played earlier this season and set ourselves up for a very interesting final six weeks of the season,'' Cardinals catcher Gary Bennett said. "We're definitely looking forward to it.''

Milwaukee (62-56), meanwhile, is clinging to a 1 1/2-game lead over the Cubs after concluding a 2-4 road trip with a 6-4 loss at Houston on Sunday.

Although the Brewers have struggled to a 23-36 record on the road, they are an NL-best 39-20 at Miller Park, where they swept a three-game set with the Cardinals from April 30-May 2. Milwaukee is 5-4 overall this season against St. Louis, which at 25-33 has played almost as poorly as the Brewers on the road.

St. Louis took three of four from the Brewers at Busch Stadium from the Brewers from July 27-29 in the most recent series between the teams.

Oddsmakers from have made Milwaukee -131 money line favorites (MLB Odds) for today's game, the over/under has been set at 9.5 total runs (Matchup). Current public betting information shows that 52% of bets for this game have been placed on Milwaukee -131 (View MLB Bet Percentages).

On Sunday, six St. Louis players had at least two hits as the Cardinals posted a season-high 18 against the Dodgers. Rick Ankiel went 1-for-4, and the pitcher-turned-outfielder is batting .375 (6-for-16) with three homers and six RBIs since being called up from Triple-A Memphis on Thursday.

Albert Pujols, who went 2-for-4 Sunday, shouldn't mind facing Milwaukee starter Chris Capuano. The All-Star first baseman is batting .560 (14-for-25) with three homers and 10 RBIs lifetime against the left-hander.

Capuano (5-9, 4.96 ERA) will again try for his first win since beating Washington 3-0 on May 7. He allowed four runs and seven hits in five innings of an 11-4 loss at Colorado last Tuesday to fall to 0-9 with a 6.33 ERA in his last 14 starts.

"I'm tired of the streak,'' Capuano said. "It's not like I go out and try not to win over 14 starts. It was the same old story."

Capuano is 4-4 with a 5.20 ERA in 11 career starts against Cardinals, including 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA in two this season.

Geoff Jenkins hit a pair of solo homers and J.J. Hardy hit his 20th home run Sunday for the Brewers, who failed to sweep the Astros.

Hardy, who is batting .381 (8-for-21) with two homers in his last five games, is hitting .375 (12-for-32) against St. Louis this season.

Cardinals starter Kip Wells (5-13, 3.56) will try to post consecutive winning decisions for the first time in more than a year.

Wells, who last won two straight decisions on July 28 and Aug. 2, 2006, didn't allow an earned run while giving up six hits in seven innings of a 2-1 victory over San Diego on Wednesday.

"That's the way he's been pitching. He's given us a bunch of quality starts," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said.

The right-hander is 6-8 with a 4.49 ERA versus St. Louis in 20 starts lifetime, but 0-2 with a 7.50 ERA in three outings this season.

by: Michael Cash - – Email Us

More MLB Baseball coverage from

 - MLB news wire
 - Current MLB Injuries
 - 2007 MLB standings
 - 2007 MLB schedule
 - 2007 MLB Umpire sheet
 - 2007 MLB stats
 - MLB scoreboard
 - Expert MLB picks
 - Accuscore predictions
 - Comments and discussion
 - Signup for daily newsletter
 - MLB home

Recent MLB Discussions

TRAP GAMES BEWARE on Sat, May 2016 by Timmy1961
MLB PLAYS FOR SAT. THE 28TH on Sat, May 2016 by Timmy1961
MLB Trends Saturday, May 28 on Sat, May 2016 by Blade

MLB Top Stories

Thumbnail Rangers' Darvish draws first start vs. Pirates How far can the Rangers’ rotation carry them this year? The organization could have a pretty clear idea in just a few hours.
Thumbnail Dodgers vs. Mets Prediction Will their Mets pick up their third consecutive win when they host the Dodgers tonight at 7:15PM ET?
Thumbnail Twins vs. Mariners Free Pick The Seattle Mariners hope to slow down a slightly surging Minnesota Twins tonight when they face off at 10:10PM...
Thumbnail Astros vs. Angels Pick With two struggling aces on the mound, who will prevail as the Los Angeles Angels host the Houston Astros tonight at...
Thumbnail Will Yankees' Pineda have Rays' number? The Bronx Bombers are on an absolute tear away from Yankee Stadium, and they’re excited to have Alex Rodriguez back in the saddle.
More inMLB Articles  

MLB Headlines

More inMLB News  

MLB Team Pages