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Game Thread: Pirates Look to Avoid Sweep...Again

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MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at St. Louis Cardinals Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports

Steven Brault takes the bump Sunday afternoon in his second start since coming back from injury, opposing Miles Mikolas and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Brault (3-1, 4.09) looked fairly decent in his first outing after missing a month of action. Against the Brewers on Tuesday, he went 5.1 innings, giving up two earned runs on three hits and a walk. He struck out six. The Pirates ultimately lost the game 4-3 and Brault received a no decision. He relied heavily on his fastball in that outing, throwing it a season high 86.1 percent of the time.

The Pirates will try to avoid a second straight sweep and seventh straight loss overall in today’s matchup. They now sit 20 games under .500 (48-68) and have lost 23 of 27 since the All-Star Break.

As for the Cardinals, facing the Pirates may have been just the elixir needed to get them back on track. Before this series, they had lost five straight games and eight of their last ten. The Cardinals are two games back of the division lead and a half game back of the second Wild Card.

Mikolas (7-12, 3.94) has been great over his last five starts. In 33 innings over that span, he’s allowed just eight earned runs. Two of those starts came against the Pirates. Both were wins. One was a shutout.

First pitch is scheduled for 2:15 p.m. eastern time.

Lineups

Pirates

2B Adam Frazier

RF Bryan Reynolds

CF Starling Marte

1B Josh Bell

LF Melky Cabrera

3B Colin Moran

C Elias Diaz

SS Erik Gonzalez

P Steven Brault

Cardinals

2B Tommy Edman

RF Jose Martinez

1B Paul Goldschmidt

LF Marcell Ozuna

SS Paul DeJong

3B Yairo Munoz

C Andrew Knizner

CF Lane Thomas

P Miles Mikolas