San Diego Padres (87-71) at Milwaukee Brewers (81-77), 8:05 Eastern Thursday
by Zman of Predictem.com
The San Diego Padres look to solidify their hold on a playoff spot while the Milwaukee Brewers hope to make up ground in the NL Central race when the two teams meet for a four-game season-ending series beginning Thursday night at Miller Park.
San Diego, just off taking two of three games from the Giants in San Francisco, trails the Arizona Diamondbacks by one game in the National League’s West Division, but leads the NL wild-card race by a game over the Philadelphia Phillies and the surging Colorado Rockies.
Milwaukee, meanwhile, after taking two of three games from the St. Louis Cardinals this week, now trails the Chicago Cubs by two games in the NL Central.
In the only encounter between these two teams so far this season, the Pads swept three games from the Brew Crew in Milwaukee back in May.
San Diego is 40-37 on the road this season, while the Brewers are an NL-best 49-28 at home.
Two rookies will take the hill Thursday night, with Jack Cassel (1-1, 4.00) going for the Padres and Yovani Gallardo (9-4, 3.59) for Milwaukee.
Cassel has made three career ML starts, all within the last month, in which he’s allowed six ER and 26 baserunners (hits + walks) over 14 IP. San Diego is 2-1 in Cassel’s starts this season, the o/u 1-2.
This will be Cassel’s first-ever start vs. the Brewers.
Gallardo has been great lately, allowing just two ER and 32 baserunners over his last 28 IP. Milwaukee is 3-1 over his last four starts, and 9-7 on the season when Gallardo goes, the o/u 7-8.
This will be Gallardo’s first-ever start vs. the Padres.
San Diego was already a bit pedestrian on offense, with a .321 OBP this season, which ranks 27th in the league, and a 4.5 runs per game average. But now the Padres will be without two key contributors for the rest of the season, after Milton Bradley and Mike Cameron went down with injuries on the same day last weekend.
The Brewers rank 22nd in the league with their .329 team OBP and are averaging 4.9 RPG.
The San Diego bullpen has allowed six ER and 30 baserunners over its last 20 innings of work.
The Milwaukee pen has given up 11 ER and 23 baserunners over its last 12 1/3 IP.
The o/u is 77-76 in Padres games this season, 83-68 in Brewers games, and 45-30 at Miller Park, where games are averaging 9.6 runs per this year.
The Predictem Pick: With Gallardo pitching like Cy Young, who can even think to not bet on him? Take the BrewCrew at -169.
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