Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Volquez aims to rebound as I-70 Series moves to St. Louis

As the I-70 Series shifts to St. Louis, Royals right-hander Edinson Volquez (7-7, 5.15 ERA) will have a chance for redemption as he squares off against Cardinals righty Carlos Martinez (7-5, 3.02) on Wednesday in the opener of a two-game set at Busch Stadium.
In Volquez's previous outing last Friday against the Astros, he gave up 12 runs (11 earned) while recording just three outs. The outing stretched the bullpen, which ended up pitching more than six innings in two consecutive games.
Busch Stadium might just be the perfect place for Volquez to have his resurgence. In his last two outings there, he's pitched a combined 15 1/3 innings, giving up one run on nine hits. St. Louis was also the site of his last complete game, as Volquez gave up one run in nine innings against the Cardinals on July 10, 2014.
Martinez will look to continue a recent string of strong outings. He has logged five straight quality starts since picking up his last loss against the Cubs. In that span, he posted an ERA of 1.24, and had gone at least seven innings four times.
Martinez has only pitched once in the I-70 Series, throwing two hitless innings of relief in a 3-2 Cardinals loss on June 5, 2014.
Things to know about this game
• The Royals are just 13-25 on the road this year, which gives them the second worst road winning percentage in the American League and the third worst in the Majors.
• Cardinals infielder Jhonny Peralta entered Tuesday with four hitless games in his last five outings, while catcher Yadier Molina had gone hitless 11 times in 20 games this month.
• Royals right fielder Paulo Orlando ranks second in the Majors in batting average on balls in play (minimum 100 plate appearances). Through his first 51 games, he was hitting .441 on balls in play, which would be the highest mark since at least 1945, according to FanGraphs.

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