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Cardinals-Reds Preview: The Pitchers

Yesterday's rainout in Florida was a disaster for those among us who plan their evenings around watching the Cardinals, or at least doing something else while the Cardinals are on TV, but there was one silver lining in Miami's endless cloud-cover: It happened in a game that Jeff Suppan was all set to pitch. 

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The way the Cardinals-Reds probables have worked out is like a gift from the spiteful gods of baseball in exchange for that hazy night without baseball; for not watching Suppan we've been gifted a series that pits Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, and Jaime Garcia against the top team in the NL Central. 

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Of course, the Cardinals haven't gotten off too easily; the Reds will trot out Mike Leake, Johnny Cueto, and Bronson Arroyo. Leake has struggled considerably over his last two starts, but he's still having an outstanding pro baseball debut; Cueto, however, has been excellent since the Cardinals pasted him on June 1. Since then he's 6-1 with an ERA of 2.44, although the Reds can't be pleased with the tumble his strikeout rate has taken.

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In ditching Suppan's start the Cardinals are in the best position possible to take on the Reds, but they haven't lucked into any walkover pitchers on the other team's lineup cards. (And given Bud Norris's success against them, maybe that's not a bad thing.)

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