The Cardinals are in Minnesota on Wednesday, playing the second game of brief two-game series, that seems to be going on throughout the major leagues on Tuesday and Wednesday. St. Louis had been playing great baseball, having won seven of nine, until losing to the Padres on Saturday and then 5-3 on Sunday. Still, they are 22-16 and just one game behind the Milwaukee Brewers for first place in the NL Central.
The Twins started off the season well, then went into a big rut, but have fought their way back into contention. Of course, in the case of the AL Central, that’s pretty easy to do in what is the worst division in baseball. The Indians are in first with a record of just 20-20 and the Twins are 1.5 games behind with a record of 17-20.
Mikolas is perfect
Miles Mikolas takes the mound on Wednesday and he will look to stay perfect. He’s 5-0 on the young year and has sparkling numbers to go with. It’s a pretty amazing story considering the guy is 29 years old and had made a grand total of 10 starts in his major league career entering this year. But he’s now put together seven great starts to begin this year, amassing the perfect record while he’s out.
Of all the numbers that stand out, his 2.51 ERA is probably last on the list. Most impressive is his K/BB ratio of 35/3. You just don’t see that unless you’re Clayton Kershaw. He also has a WHIP of .96 and batters are hitting just over .200 against him. How does this happen for a guy making his 18th career start on Wednesday?
Lynn goes for the Twins
Lance Lynn will be making the start for the Twins on Wednesday and he’ll be facing off against an old friend, having spent several years with the Cardinals. He probably wishes he was back in St. Louis as things aren’t going all that great so far this year with the 31-year-old right hander entering the game against the Cards with a 1-3 record and a 7.34 ERA. He doesn’t look anything like the pitcher he did in St. Louis.
He’s given up at least four earned runs in four of his last five starts, and he’s actually lucky he’s only got three losses on the season. He has an absurd 25 walks in 34 innings and an even more absurd 1.98 WHIP. Runners are hitting .312 against him and it’s almost surprising that his ERA isn’t higher than 7.34.
The St. Louis Cardinals are:
- 5-1 in their last 6 games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30.
- 4-1 in Mikolas’ last 5 starts on grass.
The Minnesota Twins are:
- 2-5 in Lynn’s last 7 starts.
- 1-4 in Lynn’s last 5 starts vs. a team with a winning record.
- 17-36 in their last 53 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
I think the Cardinals are the better team right now and I’ll take the 5-0 Mike Mikolas to win on Wednesday. Lynn will continue his struggles against his former team.