St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds
When and Where: Friday, July 19, Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati, Ohio, 7:10 p.m. EDT.
Coming off one of his best starts of the season, Adam Wainwright has an opportunity to get back to the .500 mark Friday night when the St. Louis Cardinals continue their four-game series against the Cincinnati Reds.
Wainwright looks to carry home form to road
Wainwright (6-7, 3.99) has been around the .500 mark for most of the season and moved a step closer back to the break-even mark following a strong outing against Arizona on Sunday in which he scattered four hits and a walk while striking out seven in seven shutout innings of a 5-3 victory.
The right-hander showed no ill-effects from the back spasms that pushed his scheduled start back two days as he also moved into fourth on the club’s all-time wins list with No. 154.
“Adam’s a high expectation (guy), just like our club. He’s exactly what we want in that he’s always striving for more,” Cards manager Mike Shildt told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “So, if we’re doing well, we want to be even better. Adam’s a great representation of that. That’s his lion heart and his warrior mentality. He’s pitched well, but that’s not good enough. He wants to be — and is — elite. That’s his bar. That’s our bar, as well.”
Quality pitching on the road, though, has often been too high a bar for Wainwright to clear this year. He is 1-5 with a 6.20 ERA in eight starts outside Busch Stadium, including 0-4 with a 7.40 ERA in the last five.
One of Wainwright’s more credible road starts this year came against Cincinnati, but it still was not enough to prevent taking a loss as he allowed a pair of solo homers and one other hit in six-plus innings in a 5-2 defeat April 13.
The righty is 9-12 with a 5.11 ERA in 25 lifetime starts versus the Reds and 6-6 with a 4.47 ERA in 16 road outings. Wainwright has not won at Great American Ball Park since 2014 and is 0-2 with a 6.85 ERA in his last five starts there.
Mahle out to avoid becoming second 11-game loser in NL
Tyler Mahle‘s personal losing streak hit five in his first start out of the All-Star break, getting drilled for career worsts of 10 runs and 12 hits in 4 1-3 innings of Cincinnati’s 10-9 loss at Coors Field to Colorado on Sunday.
— FOX Sports Ohio (@FOXSportsOH) July 14, 2019
Mahle (2-10, 4.82 ERA) also set a new single-season career high in losses after dropping to 0-5 with a 5.80 ERA in seven starts during his winless stretch. The Reds have backed him with just 12 runs in those games, and his 3.80 run support average on the season ranked sixth-lowest in the National League entering play Thursday.
The right-hander had a subpar outing in St. Louis in his only prior matchup with the Cardinals this year, yielding five runs in as many innings in a 6-3 defeat April 27. Mahle has lost back-to-back starts to St. Louis and was reached for five runs in 5 1-3 innings last year in a 5-3 defeat that is also his only start at home in the rivalry.
Mahle has been a better pitcher at home than overall, recording a 2-2 record and 3.62 ERA in seven starts, but Cincinnati has provided one or no runs in four of those outings. He is also 0-1 with a 5.73 ERA in four starts against NL Central teams in 2019.
The Cardinals are:
- 41-14 in Wainwright’s last 55 starts during game 2 of a series.
- 47-16 in Wainwright’s last 63 starts vs. sub-.500 teams.
- 23-11 in their last 34 games vs. the Reds.
The Reds are:
- 2-10 in Mahle’s last 12 starts vs. above-.500 teams.
- 0-5 in Mahle’s last five starts vs. NL Central teams.
- 4-14 in their last 18 home games vs. the Cardinals.