The I-70 series begins on Friday night, as the KC Royals travel to Busch Stadium to face the reigning World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals. The Interleague matchup is just one 3-game series this season (instead of a home-and-home matchup like last year).
The Royals are coming off a series sweep at home versus Milwaukee, while the Cardinals won their series against the Chicago White Sox. The Cardinals moved into a tie for second place in the National League Central with Pittsburgh (three games back of Cincinnati).
Friday: Vin Mazzaro (2-1, 3.60 ERA) @ Kyle Lohse (6-1, 2.90 ERA)
Mazzaro is coming off a bad start against the Pirates (just three innings). How long he stays in the rotation will depend on how he continues to pitch.
Lohse has been dominant so far in June (0.66 ERA and a .106 opponent’s abtting average). He has allowed more than three earned runs in just two starts in 2012.
Saturday: Bruce Chen (5-6, 4.44 ERA) @ Joe Kelly (0-0, 1.80 ERA)
I feel like I write this every fifth day, but Chen has been the Royals most consistent starter.
Kelly made his Major League debut last Sunday and did not disappoint (one run on seven hits over five innings).
Sunday: Luis Mendoza (2-3, 4.89 ERA) @ Adam Wainwright (4-7, 4.75 ERA)
Mendoza hasn’t won a game since May 13th, but carried a no-hitter against the Brewers into the 7th inning in his last start.
Wainwright has gotten better and better with each start as the season has progressed. It is his first year back after Tommy John surgery.
Let the battle for Missouri begin!
*For more on the Cardinals, check out Aaron Miles’ Fastball.