The St. Louis Cardinals (56-48, 31-20 home) host the New York Yankees (70-36, 29-21 away) in an interleague showdown between a pair of postseason hopefuls. The three-game weekend series will be the only time these two cross-division foes face each other during the regular season.
Friday’s first pitch is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. EST inside Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri. The Yankees are the betting favorite at -145, and the over-under total is 8.5 runs.
What to Know – New York Yankees
New York begins a nine-game road stand looking to turn things around after dropping three of its last four at home. The Yankees remain comfortably in the lead in the AL East, holding an 11-game advantage over the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Yankees turn to lefty Nestor Cortes (9-3, 2.53 ERA, 1.02 WHIP) on the mound. Cortes has back-to-back victories in his last two starts and went 3-0 over five starts in July. The All-Star starter has 106.2 innings thrown this year, surrendering 30 earned runs on 85 hits and 24 walks with 111 strikeouts.
Aaron Judge might run away with the AL MVP thanks to his play at the dish. Judge leads the majors in both home runs (43) and runs batted in (93) over 102 games. Anthony Rizzo has added 27 homers and 66 RBIs, while Giancarlo Stanton has 24 dingers and 61 RBIs.
The Yankees score 5.3 runs per game, backed by a team batting average of .245 that ranks 13th in the league. New York’s pitching staff is third in the majors with a 3.25 team earned run average.
What to Know – St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals have won four in a row and six of their last seven coming into a big weekend series against New York. St. Louis is only a half-game behind the Milwaukee Brewers for the top spot in the NL Central.
Right-hander Dakota Hudson (6-6, 4.10 ERA, 1.36 WHIP) is the probable starter for the hosts. The 27-year-old has had an up and down season on the hill but aims to get back into the win column on Friday. Hudson has pitched 101.0 innings while surrendering 46 earned runs behind 93 hits and 44 walks with 54 strikeouts.
Pete Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado were both All-Stars, and it’s shown at the plate this season. Goldschmidt leads the majors with a .332 batting average and has 26 home runs and 82 RBIs. Arenado has 21 blasts and 63 RBIs for the Cardinals.
St. Louis sits eighth in the majors, hitting .252 as a team and averaging 4.6 runs per contest. The pitching staff for the Cardinals is ninth in the MLB, sporting a 3.80 team ERA.
The Pick is In
We get a glimpse at a potential World Series matchup this weekend with these two teams going head to head. St. Louis has the lineup to compete with the Yankees, but the pitching matchup favors the visitors. Hudson gets pushed around by the Bronx Bombers, and the Yankees take the opener on the road.
The Pick: New York Yankees ML