New York Mets vs. St. Louis Cardinals Preview

New York Mets (1-0 this season, 97-65 in 2006) pick ’em, o/u 9 at St. Louis Cardinals (0-1, this season, 83-78 in ’06), 8:10 pm Tuesday
by Staff

The New York Mets and St. Louis Cardinals continue their re-enactment of the 2006 National League Championship Series when they hook up for the second game of a season-opening three-game set at Busch Stadium Tuesday night.

These two teams kicked off the 2007 MLB season Sunday night when New York, behind six strong innings from 41-year-old Tom Glavine, beat St. Louis 6-1. The win was career #291 for Glavine.

These two teams, of course, also battled for the NL pennant last October, with the Cards winning in the ninth inning of the seventh game.

But it was the Mets who won the regular-season series between these two teams last year four games to two.

New York went 47-34 on the road last season, while St. Louis went 49-31 at home.

Orlando Hernandez will take the hill for the Mets Tuesday night against newcomer Kip Wells for the Cardinals. Hernandez went 9-7 with a 4.09 ERA in 20 starts for New York last year after coming over from Arizona in a mid-season trade. But he got hurt and missed the playoffs. Also, Hernandez has never started a game (regular season and playoffs) vs. St. Louis.

The Diamondbacks and Mets combined to go 16-13 in Hernandez’ starts last year, and the over/under went 14-15 in those games.

The Cardinals are depending upon Wells, who is 15-30 with an ERA over five over the course of the last three seasons, to fill a spot in the starting rotation after Jeff Suppan and Jeff Weaver both jumped ship during the off-season. Wells was limited to just nine starts last season for Pittsburgh and Texas due to injuries. He started one game last season against the Mets, for the Pirates, giving up five ER and seven baserunners in six innings of a loss.

Last season, Pittsburgh and the Rangers combined to go 4-5 in Wells’ starts, and the O/U went 5-4 in those games.

New York tallied a .334 team OBP last season, and averaged 5.1 runs per game.

St. Louis put up a .337 team OBP last season and averaged 4.8 RPG.

Sunday night, the Mets’ bullpen allowed six baserunners in three IP but no runs, while the Cardinals pen gave up a run on three baserunners in three IP.

The O/U went 87-73 in Mets games last year and 81-81 in Cardinals games. It also went 39-42 at the new Busch Stadium, where games averaged 9.2 runs total.

And the O/U went 3-3 in the regular-season series between these two teams last season, and 2-5 in the NLCS.

John Maine, who allowed just 69 hits in 90 innings last season while striking out 71, will start on the mound for the Mets Wednesday night in the series finale against converted reliever and former Met Braden Looper.