The Atlanta Braves and St. Louis Cardinals open a weekend series at Busch Stadium on Friday night. Atlanta right-hander Mike Foltynewicz (0-3, 6.91 ERA/1.35 WHIP) will take on Cardinals right-hander Miles Mikolas (4-4, 4.88 ERA/1.19 WHIP).
Trying To Build Momentum
Mike Foltynewicz had his best outing of the season last time out against the Brewers, but he did get beat over the head by these same Cardinals 10 days ago. St. Louis hung eight runs on the veteran righty, including three long balls, en route to a football-like 14-3 score. Prior to Sunday’s outing, the opposition scored at least nine runs in all four of Folty’s starts.
A lot of these Cardinals’ hitters have done well when facing Foltynewicz, as the current roster has a combined .918 lifetime OPS against him. Not to mention, the Redbirds have a right-handed heavy lineup, and Folty is getting bulldozed by righties so far this season to the tune of a .327 batting average, .727 slugging percentage, and 1.111 OPS.
Looking To Bounce Back
Miles Mikolas had just the opposite of Folty in his last outing, getting walloped for nine hits and seven runs over 1 1/3 innings at Texas. Mikolas isn’t the type of pitcher that fools many hitters – he’ll rely more on power and precision. When looking at this matchup against the Braves, it doesn’t seem like that type of game plan will work most of the night.
It was quite telling to see a 9.5-run total set to open this game at Busch Stadium, which isn’t necessarily a hitter’s park. However, the 9.5-run total has since jumped up to 10 on some sportsbooks (hopefully, you get it at 9.5), with the implied run totals increasing slightly for each team – Cardinals: +0.3, Braves: +0.1. The Redbirds’ 5.6 IRT is the second-highest team total on tonight’s slate, behind only the Rockies, who will be facing the Orioles at Coors Field.
The weather should play a big part here as well. It’ll be an uncharacteristically warm evening in St. Louis, which should help the ball flight. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper 80s for the first pitch of this game, with the wind blowing out to left field at about 10 mph.
All in all, most of the runs will likely come from the Cardinals’ side of things, but don’t be surprised to see the Braves bring something to the table as well.
Final Score Prediction: St. Louis Cardinals 8, Atlanta Braves 6