Monday, April 17, 2006

Cards in town

We welcome the Cards into town for three days before our first off-day of the season and I'm not sure St. Louie could show up at a worse time. The Cards have to feel more comfort at PNC than they do anywhere else, last year they were 5-1 here (and Zach Duke got hurt in our only win against them), two years ago they were 7-3 here, lifetime they're 30-10 (all these numbers are supposing that my quick calculations with ESPN and Retrosheet are correct) on the North Side since PNC was built. Curiously enough, we've outscored the Cards by 7 runs coming into tonight's game (though we've played two more games then they have). Of course the four game difference in the standings is more than explained by runs allowed, they've given up 48, we've given up 90.

The pitching matchups are Marquis vs. Maholm, Suppan vs. Perez, and Carpenter vs. Santos. Maholm actually looked pretty good in his last outing against the Dodgers (which I was at). He gave up a couple tweeners and Damaso Marte let all of his inherited runners score, but like Snell yesterday, he had a chunk of good innings in the middle of the game. If he can give us a good start tonight I think we might have a shot as Marquis has never really impressed me all that much. I'm going to stick with the sentiment that the third start is a key one for all of these guys that Colborn's been working with, because they really should be able to adapt to the changes he's made by this point in the season. The other two matchups are scary, as anything can happen with Perez on the mound and Carpenter vs. Santos is a mismatch from hell.