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Gamethread #77: Astros (30-47) at Brewers (34-42)

And now...Game 2.

Current Series

Astros lead the series 1-0

Mon 06/28 WP: Gustavo Chacin (1 - 0)
LP: Todd Coffey (2 - 2)
5 - 9 loss

Houston Astros
@ Milwaukee Brewers

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010, 7:10 PM CDT
Miller Park

Brett Myers vs Yovani Gallardo

Clear. Winds blowing out to right field at 5-15 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 70.

Complete Coverage >

Wed 06/30 1:10 PM CDT

Follow us after the jump for today's pitching matchup, lineup and more!

Yovani Gallardo (2.36 ERA, 2.87 FIP) will make his 17th start tonight and leads the Brewers in ERA, innings (103) and strikeouts (115). He also leads Brewer starters in WHIP (1.214), HR/9 (0.4) and BB/9 (3.8). He's pitching on four days rest following a complete game shutout of the Twins on Thursday where he allowed five hits, didn't walk a batter and struck out 12. He's struck out ten or more batters in five games this season, but has also thrown 103 or more pitches in 14 consecutive starts while averaging 6.5 innings.

Gallardo's three primary pitches (92 mph fastball, curve and slider) account for nearly 95% of his offerings and all three are above average. The slider has been his best pitch in 2010, worth +2.03 runs per 100. Batters are doing a good job of raising his pitch count this season: They're swinging at just 39.5% of his pitches, the lowest percentage of his career. Six Astros have faced him ten times or more:

Carlos Lee 20 .278 .300 .500 .800
Lance Berkman 19 .214 .421 .286 .707
Hunter Pence 18 .313 .389 .500 .889
Michael Bourn 17 .357 .438 .357 .795
Geoff Blum 15 .214 .200 .429 .629
Humberto Quintero 10 .222 .300 .333 .633

Brett Myers (3.20 ERA, 3.58 FIP) is having the best season of his career at 29 years old, and is on pace to set a career low in ERA (3.20) and HR/9 (0.6) while pitching 200 innings for the first time since 2005. Like Gallardo, he throws a lot of pitches (103 or more in 11 consecutive starts) but doesn't necessarily pitch late into games (6.75 IP/GS).

Myers has a 90 mph fastball but only uses it 44% of the time, relying heavily on a slider (30%) and curve (20%). Both the slider and curve are very good pitches, worth +1.75 and +1.80 runs per 100, respectively. His HR/Fly ball ratio (7.2%) would suggest he's getting a little lucky: Fly balls have turned into home runs 14.9% of the time over the course of his career. Two Brewers have faced him ten times:

Jim Edmonds 24 .333 .500 .667 1.167
Craig Counsell 12 .111 .333 .111 .444

Via Tyler Barnes, here's today's lineup:

Rickie Weeks 2B
Corey Hart RF
Prince Fielder 1B
Ryan Braun LF
Casey McGehee 3B
Jim Edmonds CF
Jonathan Lucroy C
Alcides Escobar SS
Yovani Gallardo P

And, of course, the bullpen got plenty of work yesterday:

David Riske pitched 1 inning (27 pitches) last night.
Carlos Villanueva pitched .2 innings (18 pitches) last night.
Chris Capuano pitched 1 inning (17 pitches) last night.

Zach Braddock pitched 1 inning (11 pitches) last night.
Todd Coffey pitched .1 innings (6 pitches) last night.John Axford pitched 1 inning (17 pitches) Sunday.
Kameron Loe pitched 1 inning (12 pitches) Saturday.
Trevor Hoffman pitched 1 inning (7 pitches) Saturday.

Enjoy the game!