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Game Thread #161: Brewers (78-82) at Cardinals (91-69)

Current Series

Brewers lead the series 1-0

Fri 10/02 WP: Braden Looper (14 - 7)
LP: Kyle McClellan (4 - 4)
12 - 6 win

Milwaukee Brewers
@ St. Louis Cardinals

Saturday, Oct 3, 2009, 12:10 PM CDT
Busch Stadium

Carlos Villanueva vs Kyle Lohse

Partly cloudy. Winds blowing out to right field at 10-15 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 55.

Complete Coverage >

Sun 10/04 1:15 PM CDT

Since the sixth inning last night, the Brewers have scored twelve runs and allowed none. Can they keep the streak alive today?

Follow the jump for today's pitching matchup and conversation on today's game!

Kyle Lohse (6-9, 4.84) may not be needed to start a game this postseason for the Cardinals, who already have Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright and Joel Pineiro, so he could be making his final 2009 start today. Lohse has thrown just 111.2 innings this season and his ERA is a full run higher than last year's, so he's off to a great start on the four year/$41 million contract he signed over the offseason. He's having a hard time finishing strong this season: over eight starts in August and September he's posted a 6.48 ERA in 33.1 innings. He only lasted four innings in his only start against the Brewers this season, and picked up the loss, allowing four runs on four hits. He pitched a scoreless inning in relief against the Crew on September 5.

Meanwhile, Carlos Villanueva (3-10, 5.24) is today's unlikely starter for the Crew, with Dave Bush, Yovani Gallardo, Mike Burns and Josh Butler all unavailable. Villanueva is making his first start since August 15, and posted a 6.38 ERA in five outings as a starter earlier this season. With that said, since being returned to the bullpen Villanueva has pitched in 15 games and posted a 2.31 ERA in 23.1 innings. He hasn't thrown more than 30 pitches in a game since September 8, so he's probably good for 50-60 at most today, or 3-4 innings.

After that, it'll be up to the bullpen, and they're starting to look a little ragged:

Todd Coffey pitched one inning (17 pitches) last night, and also pitched on Thursday.
Claudio Vargas pitched one inning (18 pitches) last night.
Trevor Hoffman pitched one inning (10 pitches) last night..
Chris Smith faced four batters (16 pitches) Thursday.
John Axford pitched two innings (46 pitches) Thursday.
Seth McClung pitched 1.1 innings (31 pitches) Thursday.
Mitch Stetter pitched one inning (14 pitches) Thursday.
David Weathers has been shut down for the season.

Adam McCalvy has today's lineup, including Alcides Escobar's first shot at batting leadoff:

Alcides Escobar SS
Craig Counsell 2B
Ryan Braun LF
Prince Fielder 1B
Casey McGehee 3B
Mike Cameron CF
Jody Gerut RF
Mike Rivera C
Carlos Villanueva RHP