@ St. Louis Cardinals
Thursday, Jun 4, 2009, 8:15 PM EDT
Aaron Harang vs Chris Carpenter
Partly cloudy. Game time temperature around 75.
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Here we are with one final chance to get something positive out of this road trip. It's great to see that even after getting swept by the Brewers last weekend, the Reds still have a chance to finish the trip in a tie for second place. And all they have to do is beat Chris Carpenter. Great.
After missing most of the last 2 season following elbow surgery and just over a month this year with an oblique injury, Carpenter appears to be back to his old self once again. He's given up just 2 earned runs in 29 innings this season, both of them coming in his most recent start against the Giants. He's struck out nearly 6 batters for every walk this year and he has yet to allow a home run. To make a long story short, it ain't going to be easy to beat him tonight.
Hopefully Aaron Harang is up to the challenge as he has been in the past. This will be the 6th time these two pitchers have started against each other, with the highlights for Reds fans being two separate 1-0 victories. Overall, Carpenter has pitched better in the matchups, but the Reds are 3-2 in the previous 5 meetings. Here is the breakdown of the two pitchers:
The other thing to watch for tonight is whether or not Harang is feeling any ill effects from the rain delay game a week and a half ago. As you may recall, he was hit pretty hard by the Brewers last Saturday, his first start after the rain delay. His excuse was that he didn't have command of his breaking pitches, but my fear is that his desire to pitch for the win after a 2 hour rain delay has left his arm less than healthy. I sooooo hope that I am wrong though. With Edinson Volquez back on the DL, we need Harang to be healthy now more than ever.