Is Chris Carpenter The Pirates Snake River Canyon?


Evel Knievel knew something about momentum.

The Pirates need momentum. A win today would spark the Bucs heading into tomorrow’s home opener against the Rockies. It would provide them with some much needed swagger.

The Bucs haven’t won back-to-back road series since Evel Knievel passed away.  But let’s be serious.  The Pirates had a great shot to get this streak broken last night.  They squandered many opportunities against the Cardinals Kyle McLellan.

Evel would have compared  facing McLellan to jumping a couple busses in a Jaffa Mosque parking lot.

Today is different.

Chris Carpenter is the Pirates Snake River Canyon.  This won’t be easy.  But at least the Pirates aren’t climbing into some sort of hastily made rocket ship named a skycycle or are they in Kevin Correia?

The Pirates and the Cardinals will both be gunning for the series victory when they meet this afternoon at Busch Stadium.   A win puts the Bucs at 4-2.  The questions about road losses can start to move away.  The expectations could even rise a little bit.   Too bad Evel’s skycycle didn’t.

[for some reason the really cool snake river canyon video doesn’t post but here is the link]

Keep an eye on:

Discipline at the plate.  Will the strikeouts continue?   We can tolerate them for now if the hits continue to pile up.

Jose Tabata is proving a lot of people wrong.  He looks comfortable in the leadoff spot.  His hustle is fun to watch, even on simple groundouts.

Neil Walker looked human last night.  He wasn’t happy about it.

Belly itchers:

The Pirates will pin their hopes on the pitching of righthander Kevin Correia in this game. Correia has a 1-0 record and a 3.00 ERA, and 132 ERA+  this season.

Correia deserved a little better fielding behind him in the Pirates season opener, but still got the Bucs a win with some solid pitching.

In 2010, Correia was shaky against the Cardinals.  In September he pitched 1.2 innings gave up a hit, a walk and got a strikeout.   In his lone start against the Cardinals, he threw six scoreless innings.  He allowed five hits, walked six and struck out five.   Box

Damn that’s a lot of free passes.  That will not work against Carpenter.

The Cardinals will counter Correia with Chris Carpenter. Righthander Carpenter has a 2.57 ERA.

Carpenter had a strong outing in the opener when he allowed just two hits, two earned runs and tallied  four strikeouts over seven innings.

The last time he faced the Bucs he went eight innings, gave up five hits (Tabata, Walker, Jones with Milledge getting the other two,) struckout six and walked three  in a 1-0 Cardinals win.

In May, the right hander went seven innings, gave up eight hits (Cutch had three, and Milledge got  two more) and the Cardinals won 4-3.

Carpenter is mentioned by several Pirates as one of the toughest pitchers they face over an entire season.  When we add up his work from last season Carpenter has pitched 15 innings against the Bucs in 2010, struckout fourteen and walked just three.

Let’s start this thing up!!

Break The Streak!  Break The Streak!  Break The Streak!
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