(BaseballStL) – Lance Lynn will try for the fourth time to reach the five win mark Saturday against division rival Pittsburgh Pirates, facing off against Edinson Volquez.
This is the first time Lynn has face Pirate hitters this season. But overall against the Bucs, Lynn has given up four homers to Cardinal killer Pedro Alvarez, Clint Barmes, Russell Martin and Neil Walker. Walker was Friday night’s hero taking Carlos Martinez deep for a 3-run shot late in the game.
Volquez (1-3) has faced the Redbirds twice this season, winning the first game against ace Adam Wainwright 2-1. But his second game was a completely different story as he took a 7-0 loss at Busch Stadium allowing 6 of the 7 runs in only 5.2 innings.
Volquez gave up two homers and four RBIs in just 4 at-bats to Jhonny Peralta in his last appearance against the Cards. That translates to a walloping 2.000 slugging percentage for Peralta.
On the other hand, Yadier Molina has struggled against Volquez, hitting just .154 in 26 at-bats and 5 strike-outs. Molina has the day off and Tony Cruz will start as the Cards backstop.
Tony Cruz will start behind the plate for Lance Lynn for the fourth time this season. The duo is 2 and 1 when they start the game together, outscoring opponents 12 to 8.
Cruz is hitting .333 with an on-base percentage of .474 in 65 at-bats.
Reds activate Chapman
Central Division foe the Cincinnati Reds have activated their powerhouse closer Aroldis Chapman from the 15 day disabled list Saturday. Chapman has been out since Spring Training.
Chapman, who can consistently throw in the triple digits, has 77 saves over three seasons. He’s fanned 324 batters over 198.3 innings.
According to CBS Sports, Chapman should be an important fixture in the Reds’ bullpen. They are currently ranked 14th in the NL in relief ERA.