Milwaukee Brewers (52-41 SU, 49-40 O-U, 1st NL Central)
vs Pittsburgh Pirates (43-48 SU, 37-48 O-U, 4th NL Central)
When: Monday, July 17th, 7:05 PM ET
Line: MIL +110 / PIT -120
TV/Live Stream: MLB.tv, ATT SportsNet Pittsburgh (formerly Root Sports), FSN Wisconsin
Milwaukee and Pittsburgh begin a four-game set on Monday night at PNC Park. The Brewers have won eight of their last nine games and are still keeping a decent lead in the NL Central. The Pirates are hoping to get into fighting position for the division in this series. Pittsburgh has won four of the seven meetings against Milwaukee this season.
Brewers holding firm lead over defending champions
Milwaukee still finds themselves 5.5 games ahead of the Cubs in the NL Central entering Sunday afternoon’s action. They’ve been on fire lately in all phases of the game. Not only are they hitting in 6.5 runs per nine innings over their last 10 games, but the pitching staff has posted a 3.02 ERA in the same stretch. First baseman Eric Thames (.249 avg) finally reeled in a RBI for the first time in his last five games.
Starting pitcher: Left-hander Brent Suter (1-1, 2.96 ERA)
Suter will make his fourth start of the season. He took a no-decision last time out against the New York Yankees on July 8th. He allowed two earned runs on five hits through 6.1 innings. He’s had a decent pitching ratio of 13 strikeouts to 2 walks over his last two starts and hasn’t given up a home run. While he’s been a reliever through most of the season, he’s done a tremendous job with his starting opportunity since the beginning of July. His team crushed Baltimore in his start on July 3rd but lost to the Yankees 5-3.
Pirates offense still going strong despite recent shutout
Pittsburgh has also been hitting their winning ways with six victories in their last eight contests. Their offense has been doing well, but hit a buzzsaw on Saturday with a 4-0 shutout against St. Louis. Despite the offense not getting a run, they still recorded nine hits compared to five strikeouts. They also aren’t relying solely on Andrew McCutchen like they have had to recently.
Starting pitcher: Right-hander Chad Kuhl (3-6, 4.96 ERA)
It’s rare to not get a decision when your team wins 14-3, but that was the case for Kuhl against Chicago on July 9th. He gave up just one earned run on two hits, but was in the game for just three innings and 58 total pitches. He was given the early hook because he was spot starting for Jameson Tallion and pitched just three days later from his prior outing. Turns out the start had no pressure when he didn’t reach the mound until his team had a 10-0 lead after the top of the first.
- 4-1 in their last 5 road games
- 8-0 in their last 8 games against starters with a WHIP greater than 1.30
- 3-13 in their last 16 games on Monday
- 1-7 in Kuhl’s last 8 home starts against teams with a winning record
Milwaukee is on fire and Kuhl hasn’t been a reliable start for Pittsburgh, losing 12 of his last 17 starts. The Brewers aren’t favored because of a relatively new starter, but he’s been pitching well in July so far.