|Cards, Goldschmidt look to answer Yelich, Brewers|
The St. Louis Cardinals might still have an answer to the slugging of Milwaukee Brewers right fielder Christian Yelich.
Their own slugger.
Paul Goldschmidt has hit very well at Miller Park in his career, and the St. Louis first baseman will get another shot at improving those numbers Tuesday night when the Brewers host the Cardinals in the middle game of their three-game series.
Goldschmidt went 2-for-3 with a home run and two walks in a 10-7 loss in the series opener on Monday, quietly raising his batting average at Miller Park to .421 with 13 home runs and 30 RBIs in 28 games.
Brandon Woodruff is the scheduled starter for the Brewers on Tuesday, and he faced Goldschmidt three times on March 30 in Milwaukee. Goldschmidt went 1-for-4 and Woodruff threw five innings, giving up two runs and six hits with a walk and five strikeouts to earn his only win of the season in the 4-2 victory.
Woodruff (1-1, 6.00 ERA) hasn't been as sharp in his past two outings, however, giving up four runs and six hits in four innings of a 13-10 win against the visiting Chicago Cubs on April 5, and four runs and four hits over six innings in a 4-2 loss at the Los Angeles Angels last Wednesday.
Yelich stole the show in the series opener on Monday, hitting three home runs and driving in seven runs. Yelich is 9-for-16 in five games against St. Louis this season with seven home runs and 15 RBIs.
"They're a great team, great pitching staff," Yelich told reporters about the Cardinals after the win Monday night. "It's just one of those things, baseball's a weird game. It just happened to work out that way so far."
Cardinals starter Jack Flaherty (1-0, 2.93) has the task of trying to slow down Yelich and the Brewers.
In his first outing against the Brewers, back on March 29, Flaherty lasted only 4 1/3 innings but held Yelich to a single and a walk in three plate appearances. Yelich did homer in the game, but it was off reliever Andrew Miller.
And ultimately, the Cardinals won the game 9-5 -- their only win against the Brewers in five tries this season. Flaherty gave up four runs and seven hits with one walk and four strikeouts in the outing. Ryan Braun's three-run home run was the big blow against Flaherty.
The 23-year-old right-hander has pitched well in his past two outings, however.
He shut out the San Diego Padres on six hits over five innings on April 5, but was denied the victory when the bullpen gave up two runs in the sixth inning and three in the seventh in the 5-3 win by San Diego.
Flaherty most recently gave up one run and three hits with no walks and eight strikeouts in a 7-2 win against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday.
Tuesday will be Flaherty's 37th major league start, his seventh against the Brewers. He's 1-1 against Milwaukee with a 3.58 ERA in his career.
The increased familiarity with the Milwaukee batting order likely won't affect the way Flaherty approaches the hitters, though.
"I don't need to get any more amped up against anybody that I pitch against," Flaherty recently told reporters. "I'm kind of fired up. It doesn't really matter. My job is to beat you."
Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun is 4-for-7 in his career off Flaherty with two home runs, while third baseman Travis Shaw is 0-for-12 with eight strikeouts.
--Field Level Media