The Milwaukee Brewers (hope to) take on the St. Louis Cardinals on Saturday in what would be the Brewers home opener. Game one was scheduled to be on Friday, but was postponed due to two people in the Cardinals organization testing positive for COVID-19. Saturday's game was still planning to be played at the time of the writing of this article. Milwaukee has opened the season by splitting their first six games, after shutting out the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-0 on Wednesday. The Cardinals are 2-3 so far this season. They were shut out 3-0 by the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday, their third straight loss.
Cardinals look to get back in the win columnAfter winning their first two games against the Pirates, the Cardinals have scored just four runs in losing the series finale to the Pirates, and two games to the Twins. Just like a lot of teams have early on, the Cardinals have struggled at the plate. They come into Saturday's game with a team batting average of just .217, with only one player hitting over .250. Paul Goldschmidt has been the Cardinals' best hitter, racking up six hits in his first 19 at bats for a .316 batting average. Tyler O'Neill leads the team with two home runs.
St. Louis managed just three hits on Wednesday, as they were shut out by the Twins. Daniel Ponce de Leon couldn't get out of the fourth inning, giving up three runs on two hits and three walks. He threw 85 pitches in the game. Manager Mike Shildt is getting frustrated with his hitters, who have just 15 hits in the last three games.
"There is some frustration when you come in and don't put together as many consistent at-bats as you'd like, and the ones you do put together, you don't have a lot to show for it," Shildt said on espn.com.
Jack Flaherty is scheduled to take the hill for St. Louis on Saturday. Flaherty got the win on opening day, pitching seven innings, and giving up two runs on six hits to the Pirates, while striking out six and walked none.
Brewers come home to face Cardinals, virusThe Milwaukee Brewers will have to wait (at least) one extra day to begin the home portion of their schedule. After having a scheduled off-day on Thursday, and an unscheduled off day on Friday, the Brewers are anxious to finally play in their home ballpark. They opened the season winning two of three versus the Chicago Cubs, before taking two of three over the Pirates. Brandon Woodruff (1-1) was nearly unhittable in their last game against the Pirates, retiring 19 of the 21 batters that he faced, as Phil Evans was the only player to reach base, on a swinging bunt single and a walk. The Milwaukee bullpen did not give up a hit to complete the one-hitter.
"He was brilliant, really," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said on espn.com. "Overpowering I think is probably the word that best describes it. It's gotten to the point where the hitter has to respect the fastball so much that they're cheating for a pitch, and (catcher) Omar (Narvaez) and Brandon were really on the same page tonight, and they were throwing a different pitch than what the hitter was looking for, and you saw a lot of swings where they missed by a lot, I guess is the best way to say it."
Milwaukee comes into the game with a .198 team batting average, as 2018 NL MVP Christian Yelich has just one hit in 27 at bats in the first six games, while striking out 12 times. Lorenzo Cain has opened the season with a .333 batting average. Keston Hiura leads the way with two home runs for the Brewers.
Brett Anderson will get the start for Milwaukee on Saturday. It will be his first start of the season after signing with the Brewers in the offseason. He was 13-9 last season with the Oakland A's with a 3.89 ERA. He was originally slated to pitch the second game of the season, but had to be pushed back a week due to a blister on his left index finger.
Trends found on oddsshark.com:
- The Brewers are 3-7 straight up in their last 10 games
- The Brewers are 4-9 straight up in their last 13 games versus St. Louis
- The Cardinals are 8-1 straight up in their last nine games played in August
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
The Cardinals best pitcher, Jack Flaherty, will be on the mound facing a Brewers team that is batting less than .200, with their best hitter, Christian Yelich, mired in a 1-for-27 slump. The Brewers are starting a guy (Brett Anderson) who hasn't pitched since last September 28, and is coming off a blister on his pitching hand. The Cardinals will break out of their three-game slump and finally get back to their winning ways. St. Louis has been hitting the ball better than Milwaukee has, so expect that to continue in this game (if it gets played).
Full-Game Total Pick
Both of these teams are batting under .220 this season, so runs will definitely be hard to come by in Milwaukee on Saturday. Jack Flaherty pitched pretty well on opening day, as he went seven inning and gave up just two runs. Former MVP Christian Yelich hasn't found his groove yet, and until he does, the Brewers are going to struggle offensively. Adding the DH to the National League hasn't equated to more offense so far, as many teams have struggled offensively. The pitchers are definitely ahead of the hitters early on, so the under is the smart play here.