The Pittsburgh Pirates look to make it eight wins in nine tries against the Chicago Cubs dating back to last September. The Pirates dynamic duo of Garrett Jones and Andrew McCutchen have lead the charge in the seven games versus the Cubs this season.
Jones and McCutchen are hitting a combined .532 with three homeruns and 16RBI. They have scored 15 runs.
The Pirates pitchers have posted a 1.35ERA in the last three played at PNC. Pirates pitchers have allowed just three earned runs in twenty innings pitched. But a starter hasn’t got a win to show for it, in fact starters are 0-1 in those games.
Jeff Karstens is on the mound tonight as the starter after six straight relief appearances. From my perception, it could be his last start for a while. Karstens pitched well in his last start against St. Louis back on May 8. He pitched six shutout innings allowing three hits and two walks while striking out four Cardinals.
Ted Lilly goes for the Cubs tonight and this is what PS expert Kurt had to say over at GoatRiders:
Theodore Roosevelt Lilly is not trying very hard to get traded in this, the walk year of his contract. Since coming back from surgery, he’s posted a respectable 3.63 ERA, but he’s also lost 4 decisions in 7 starts. Ugh. Either he’s as bad as his record, or he’s as good as his ERA — guess we’ll find out soon.
Jeff Karstens is 27, he’s 1-1 this year, and he’s 10-18 in his career. He gives up lots of hits, a modest amount of walks, and if he manages to strike out more than a handful of Cubs then they’re doing it wrong. If ever there was a game in which Lilly should dominate and the Cubs should explode offensively, it’s this one.