ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell returns to St. Louis and Busch Stadium this weekend for a key matchup between the Cardinals and Pirates.
Sunday’s game is the closer in a three-game series between the NL Central rivals. Pittsburgh currently sits six and a half games behind St. Louis in the race for the divisional lead. The Pirates come into this weekend’s series hungry for a win after being swept by the Brewers, who currently sit fourth in the NL Central . John Lackey is expected to get the start for the Cardinals while Gerrit Cole is expected to take the mound for Pittsburgh. Lackey’s last time on the mound was Monday against the Nationals. St. Louis won that game 8 – 5. Lackey pitched six innings, throwing 8 Ks, and allowing 4 hits, 2 runs, 1 earned run, and 4 walks before heading to the dugout. Of his 105 total pitches, 63 were strikes. Cole’s last time on the mound was Tuesday against Milwaukee. The Brewers won that game 7 – 4. Cole pitched four innings in the loss, struggling along the way. He allowed 8 hits, 5 runs, 5 earned runs, and 1 walk, throwing only 2 Ks along the way. Out of his 77 total pitches thrown, 49 were strikes.
The numbers are against Pittsburgh as it heads into this weekend’s series against St. Louis. The Pirates’ road record currently sits at 33-32 so far on the road. That is quite a difference from its current home record of 46 – 21. And it is 5 – 5 in its last ten games verses the Cardinals’ having gone 8 – 2 in their last ten games. St. Louis is 48 – 20 at home so far this season, which is almost as good as its current 38 – 27 road record.
Coverage of Sunday night’s game is expected to start at 8pm ET. There are some slight changes to ESPN’s broadcast team for the game. Jon Sciambi will be in for regular SNB anchor Dan Shulman. There is currently no word on whether or not Curt Schilling will be replaced in the booth following the announcement this week that he will remain off the air through the remainder of the season and post season. Baseball Tonight: Sunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet will precede SNB beginning at 7pm ET. Karl Ravech will anchor the broadcast. He will be joined at the desk by analyst Aaron Boone and ESPN MLB Insider Tim Kurkjian. The broadcast will be simulcast online via WatchESPN. SNB will be simulcast on television, radio and online via ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio, and WatchESPN.
Ahead of Sunday night’s broadcast, ESPN Radio will carry coverage of the second of the series’ games between the Pirates and Red Birds. Coverage begins at 3:30pm ET. Jon Sciambi will have the call for the game.
All of the latest MLB news and headlines are available along with more information on ESPN’s MLB coverage at:
To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.