Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Preview: Game 21 - St Louis Cardinals (12-9) at New York Mets (10-10) - Wacha (2-1) vs Niese (0-2)


Preview: Game 21
St Louis Cardinals (12-9) at New York Mets (10-10)
Pitching Probables - Michael Wacha (2-1) 1.73 ERA vs Jon Niese (0-2) 2.84 ERA
TV - SNY - Radio - WOR 710 AM - First Pitch 7:10PM

Preview:

A day after Adam Wainwright suffered a hyperextended right knee, Michael Wacha will try to continue his impressive start to his first full season in the majors Wednesday night against the New York Mets.

St. Louis (12-9) was second in the majors last year with a 3.42 ERA from its rotation. The Cardinals have picked up where they left off, as their 2.20 ERA in 2014 ranks only behind Atlanta's 1.50.

They've been even better over the past nine games, compiling a 0.79 ERA while limiting opponents to a .175 batting average.

Wainwright has been a big part of that, throwing 16 scoreless innings over his past two starts. His latest, though, was cut short following the seventh inning after he awkwardly tried to field a ball in Tuesday's 3-0 win over New York (10-10).

Turning to Wacha (2-1, 1.73 ERA) could result in another strong effort on the mound. The right-hander, last year's NL championship series MVP, has allowed no more than one earned run in three of four starts this season with 25 strikeouts and only three walks.

Wacha, though, could use some help from his teammates since he's been backed by eight total runs. He pitched well enough to win Friday, allowing three runs -- one earned -- with seven strikeouts in seven innings while the Cardinals committed three errors and had five hits in a 3-1 defeat at Washington.

Wacha won his only career start against the Mets, allowing two runs in six innings of a 9-2 road victory June 11.

Jon Jay and Matt Holliday are looking for another strong performance at the plate after they totaled five hits and three RBIs on Tuesday.

That came a day after they went 0 for 7 in a 2-0 loss to open this four-game set.

Despite his performance Tuesday, Jay is 3 for 19 in five games at Citi Field. However, he's 3 for 8 with a double against Jonathon Niese, Wednesday's scheduled starter.

The Mets are 4-7 at home, thanks largely to a .184 average while scoring 2.9 runs per game.

Curtis Granderson is a major culprit, batting .089 with 16 strikeouts at home this season and hitless in his last 22 at-bats overall.

Niese (0-2, 2.84) will be looking for some help from the bats after yielding one run with seven strikeouts in six innings Friday while the offense was one-hit in a 6-0 loss to Atlanta.

He's been backed by five total runs through three outings. However, the left-hander has gotten an average of 7.3 over five career starts against the Cardinals, and he's 3-1 with a 2.00 ERA.


Batter/Pitcher Splits:


NEW YORK METS CAREER STATISTICS VS. MICHAEL WACHA (1-0) 3.00 ERA
BATTERABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOAVGOBPSLGOPS
Lucas Duda20000010.000.333.000.333
Daniel Murphy31000000.333.333.333.667
Kirk Nieuwenhuis20000000.000.000.000.000
Omar Quintanilla31001101.333.3331.3331.667
David Wright20000011.000.333.000.333
Totals122001122.167.286.417.702

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS CAREER STATISTICS VS. JONATHON NIESE (3-1) 2.00 ERA
BATTERABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOAVGOBPSLGOPS
Peter Bourjos220000001.0001.0001.0002.000
Matt Carpenter31100010.333.500.6671.167
Allen Craig51100002.200.333.400.733
Daniel Descalso21100000.500.5001.0001.500
Mark Ellis64000002.667.667.6671.333
Matt Holliday102000003.200.200.200.400
Jon Jay83100101.375.375.500.875
Pete Kozma31100100.333.333.6671.000
Yadier Molina113000021.273.385.273.657
Jhonny Peralta32000001.667.667.6671.333
Shane Robinson30000010.000.250.000.250
Totals56205002410.357.410.446.856
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