St. Louis Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers Preview and Pick

St. Louis Cardinals (22-14) Todd Wellemeyer +100, 9 O/U at
Milwaukee Brewers (16-18) Manny Parra -120, 9 O/U, Miller Park,
8:05 PM EST, Friday

by Badger of

The Milwaukee Brewers will try and snap a season high six-game losing
streak when they return home to Miller Park to start a wrap-around
four-game series versus their National League Central rival St. Louis
Cardinals Friday.

The Brew Crew should be glad to be back home too, as they were swept
by Houston and Florida in back-to-back series and just 2-7 on their
nine-game road trip. They will send rookie left hander Manny Parra to
the mound to try and stop the bleeding.

The Cardinals come into tonights game off of two consecutive losses to Colorado, but a successful split of the four-game series at Coors
Field. Theyll send righty Todd Wellemeyer to the bump to try and
continue to play near .500 baseball on the road (8-7 on road, 2-2 on
current 8-game trip).

Online baseball betting sites opened the game with the Brewers as slight -120
favorites on the moneyline, with St. Louis listed at even money +100.
The over/under total opened at 9.

The Brewers offense has been AWOL during the six-game slide (.206 avg.18 runs), but they have had some success off of Wellemeyer in
the past. This will be Wellemeyers first career start versus the
Brewers, but the Brew Crew has tagged him in his seven relief
appearances (0-1, 11.00 ERA).

Also, the Brewers rested starters Prince Fielder, Corey Hart and
Jason Kendall last night. Fielder even shaved off his baby fro, so
the Crew is looking for any way to start with a clean slate and end
the season-long offensive slump.

Wellemeyer (3-1, 4.07 ERA) has been an effective starter this season, including a short five-inning outing last time in a 5-3 win over the
Cubs on Sunday.

Another short start by Wellemeyer could turn this game into a free-
for-all for the bullpens, since his counterpart Parra has yet to
pitch past the sixth inning in his six starts. Parra already has
three career starts versus the Cards (no decisions, 4.08 ERA), with
the Brewers 2-1 in those games. Parra was shelled last time out (9 H,
6 R, 4 IP) in a 6-2 loss at Houston and the Brewers desperately need
him to go farther into the game than he has been able to so far in 2008.

Shutting down Ryan Ludwick and Albert Pujols will be the key to
Parras success, as both Ludwick (.417, HR, 2 RBI) and Pujols (3-
for-6, 2 2B) have figured him out easily in previous outings.

Ludwick and Pujols aside, the entire St. Louis roster as a whole
seems to have the Brewers number lately. The Cards are 10-4 in the
last 14 games head-to-head versus Milwaukee, and an even more
impressive 13-5 in Wellemeyers 18 starts.

The under bet is also showing a strong betting trend, as Milwaukee
and their struggling offense is 6-2 for the under in their last 8 as
a chalk. Meanwhile, St. Louis has finished under the total in nine of
their last 14 overall.

Badgers Pick: Look for the Brewers offense to get back on track
now that they are back at Miller Park. St. Louis will score too,
making this game go over the total of 9. Take the over.