Game One Hundred Twenty-Eight: Cubs (54-73) vs. Cardinals (66-60)
Game Time – 7:10pm C.T. Comcast Sports Net, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Busch Stadium, St. Louis
Juan Mateo (1-1, 3.79) vs. Jeff Suppan (9-7, 5.03)
The last 3 this season against the Cardinals and the start of a 6-game road trip that concludes next Wednesday in Pittsburgh. The Cubs are 11-5 this season against the Division Leaders and the Cardinals are fighting for their playoff lives. After taking 2 of 3 from the Cubs last weekend at Wrigley they were swept at Shea by the Mets and are tied with the scrappy Reds for first place in the Central. The Cardinals beat Juan Mateo last Sunday behind Chris Carpenter. Mateo had a horrible 1st inning, he allowed 4 runs on 2 home runs but he settled down and did not allow another run in the last 6 innings he pitched. Mateo struggled to throw strikes and when he did they were hit over the fence. Mateo gave up more runs against the Cards that game than he had combined in his previous 2 starts. If the Cubs can get an early lead and take pressure of him, he has the ability to shut down the struggling Cardinals. In 7 innings on the road this season, Mateo has allowed just 2 earned runs.
The Cardinals pitching staff is in disarray and they probably wish they could have kept Mateo after taking him in the Rule V Draft. The Cubs chased Suppan from last Saturday’s game in the 5th and scored 3 runs on 8 hits in just 4 1/3 innings. Suppan is an innings eater, plain and simple and is 1-2 with a 5.32 ERA in his last 4 starts. Suppan is 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA this season in 2 starts against the Cubs.
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