Major League Baseball
Preview
St. Louis at Cincinnati
When: 7:10 PM ET, Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Where: Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati, Ohio

Brandon Moss wasn’t able to make much of an impact in his first three games with his new team, but the St. Louis Cardinals were more than happy to see him deliver when he did. After delivering a pinch-hit, walk-off single in a series-clinching win over the weekend, Moss looks to build upon his first clutch hit with his new team on Tuesday when the Cardinals visit the Cincinnati Reds in the opener of a three-game set.

Acquired from Cleveland at the non-waiver trade deadline on Friday to share time at first base with Mark Reynolds, Moss managed only one single in his first 10 at-bats for St. Louis prior to stepping up in Sunday’s 3-2 victory versus Colorado. “We put him in a big spot. He’s the kind of player we think is going to come up big for us. He’s had some real nice at-bats and we have a lot of faith he’s going to drive the ball deep, but we’ll take a base hit,” manager Mike Matheny told reporters. Moss will likely get a start on Tuesday against Cincinnati, which blanked the Cardinals twice last week while taking two of three in St. Louis. The Reds were on the wrong end of a shutout on Sunday, however, as Pittsburgh handed Cincinnati a 3-0 setback in a game in which the benches cleared after stars Andrew McCutchen and Brandon Phillips were hit by pitches late.

TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, FSN Midwest (St. Louis), FSN Ohio (Cincinnati)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Cardinals RH John Lackey (9-6, 2.78 ERA) vs. Reds RH Anthony DeSclafani (6-7, 3.75)

Lackey came out on the short end of a pitchers’ duel in a 1-0 loss to Cincinnati on Wednesday, watching his three-game winning streak come to an end after surrendering a solo shot to Jay Bruce among the two hits he allowed in eight frames. The one-time All-Star has recorded nine consecutive quality starts, going 5-2 over that stretch while logging at least seven innings in eight of those outings. Lackey, who has struggled against Marlon Byrd in his career (10-for-32, two homers and RBIs), is 2-1 with a 2.78 ERA in six starts versus the Reds.

DeSclafani outdueled Lackey on Wednesday, turning in one of the finest performances of his two-year big-league career by holding the Cardinals to three singles and three walks across seven scoreless innings. The 25-year-old Florida product, who has surrendered six runs in each of his last two turns in Cincinnati, has struggled much more at home (2-5, 5.69 ERA) than he has on the road (4-2, 2.41). DeSclafani’s only other appearance against St. Louis came last August, when he tossed a scoreless inning in relief.

WALK-OFFS

1. Cincinnati 1B Joey Votto leads the majors in batting average (.491), walks (20) and on-base percentage (.635) since the All-Star break.

2. After hitting seven homers in 191 at-bats before the break, St. Louis LF Randal Grichuk has clubbed five in 52 at-bats in the second half.

3. Bruce’s next home run will give him 200 for his career, allowing him to become the ninth player in team history to reach that milestone and leaving him three shy of eighth-place Eric Davis.

PREDICTION: Cardinals 4, Reds 1
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
St. Louis 67-38 W1 40-16 27-22 16-7 26-15 14-7 11-9
Cincinnati 47-56 L1 27-24 20-32 16-12 21-24 4-9 6-11
Last Meeting
St. Louis Cincinnati
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
7/29/15 CIN 1 STL 0 .143 0 .429 .069 1 .301
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
St. Louis M. Carpenter .382 13 1.167
Cincinnati J. Votto .393 11 1.457
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
St. Louis M. Carpenter 2 6 7
Cincinnati J. Votto 4 7 8
Pitching ERA Avg K
St. Louis 2.30 .223 63
Cincinnati 3.42 .198 59
Season
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
St. Louis J. Heyward .289 104 .783
Cincinnati J. Votto .309 112 .964
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
St. Louis J. Peralta 16 46 54
Cincinnati T. Frazier 27 61 67
Pitching ERA Avg K
St. Louis 2.67 .256 856
Cincinnati 4.10 .253 753