August 14, 2011 – By Scott
The St. Louis Cardinals are currently in second in the NL Central and five games behind Milwaukee. They still will face the Brewers six more times in the regular season so passing them for first place is still possible. However, they need to take care of business with their other remaining opponents and after yesterday’s loss to the Colorado Rockies, they have now dropped three of their last five.
The Cardinals (64-56) won their first meeting against the Rockies on Friday 6-1, but dropped yesterday’s matchup by the same score. Now they will look to take advantage of the Rockies struggles when playing on Sunday as the two meet in Sunday Night Baseball.
For Colorado (56-65), Sunday games have been a nightmare for the Rockies. They have lost their last 16 Sunday games and will try to avoid making it 17 in a row Sunday. Offensively, the Rockies have not produced on Sunday and in their last five Sunday games have only scored eight runs.
This appears to be good news for the Cardinals pitching staff as they have struggled as of late. St. Louis’ starters have a combined ERA of 4.79 over their past 13 games, including allowing 34 walks.
“I think the most important thing is if we can get our rotation cranking, that would be the single best thing that could happen to this club as far as running off some wins and staying in contention,” manager Tony La Russa told the Cardinals’ official website.
The Cardinals will turn to Edwin Jackson who will get the start Sunday night. Jackson is 1-1 with a 4.95 ERA this season but has not performed well against Colorado in his five starts against the Rockies. He has an ERA of 17.28 in these five games and has averaged just 3 1/3 innings during this span. In his last start against the Rockies, Jackson allowed 10 earned runs in 2 1/3 innings.
Colorado will ride the arm of Esmil Rogers on Sunday night who has pitched very well lately. Rogers (6-1, 5.85 ERA) is the winner of three straight and has an ERA of 2.16 during this span of wins. In his last outing, he allowed just two runs on Tuesday against the Cincinnati Reds in their 3-2 win.
MLB sportsbooks have tagged St. Louis as the betting favorite on Sunday night and have their moneyline listed at -160. The Rockies have their line set at +145.