MILWAUKEE BREWERS (28-40) VS HOUSTON ASTROS (26-45)
MINUTE MAID PARK IN HOUSTON, TEXAS
The Brewers come into this series having won two of their last three series, and six of their last ten games. On perhaps the hottest streak of their disappointing season, they head to Houston looking to continue their dominance over their former division foe. Over the last two seasons, the Brewers have gone 21-11 against the Astros.
The Houston Astros are fresh off of a series win over the Chicago White Sox. They are 4-1 in their last five games, and they have their pitching to thank for that. In their four wins, the pitching staff held their opponents (Mariners & White Sox) to just nine runs combined. Now they will start a stretch of eight games versus three of their former division rivals in the Brewers, Cubs and Cardinals.
Alfredo Figaro will be making his fourth start of the season for the Brewers. He made 15 appearances out of the bullpen before making his first start. His last time out he threw seven shutout innings against the worst team in baseball (the Marlins), while allowing just three hits and striking out four. Figaro spent the last two seasons playing in Japan.
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Jordan Lyles is the best pitcher in Astros’ history. Okay, I tend to overreact; he has been outstanding though. Over his last six starts, Lyles is 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA. In his last start he shutout the Mariners for seven innings and struck out ten. Lyles is just 22 years old, and is quietly becoming one of the AL’s best young arms.
After a very forgettable May, Kyle Lohse has managed to turn things around this month. Last month he finished up with an 0-4 record and a 6.51 ERA. He is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA through three June starts. In his last start, Lohse allowed just one run over six innings against the Cincinnati Reds. Ronny Cedeno is hitting .421 in 19 career at-bats vs Lohse.
After getting roughed up against the Royals on June 8th, Erik Bedard managed to have a bounce-back game against the White Sox on Friday. Bedard recorded a win and allowed just one unearned run over six innings while striking out six. He is 1-0 with a 2.36 ERA in four starts at Minute Maid Park.
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Yovani Gallardo has been an Astro-killer throughout his career. In 16 career starts versus Houston, he is 13-3 with a 2.87 ERA. Gallardo did not look like himself early on this season. Apparently he has been sober over his last two starts, going 2-0 with 14 innings pitched, no earned runs and nine strikeouts
Lucas Harrell has a 1.74 ERA through three June starts. He picked up his fifth win of the season on Saturday, going 6.2 innings and allowing three earned runs to the Pale Hose. Harrell also struck out a season-high seven White Sox. Harrell has allowed eight of his ten home runs in Houston.