Once teammates, Carlos Martinez and Shelby Miller will square off as opponents at opposite ends of the spectrum tonight as the St. Louis Cardinals continue their series in Arizona against the Diamondbacks.
Martinez will be looking to improve to 4-0 on the season and has pitched seven innings in each of his last two starts.
Miller is still seeking his first win of the season and was unable to make it past the 3rd inning in each of his last two outings.
“I really just haven’t got into a groove yet,” Miller told the Arizona Republic recently. “More so than anything, my goal is to go out there and have a good tempo, a good pace, and get ahead in counts. I’ve kind of been falling behind in counts and giving the hitters a good opportunity to swing and hit the ball.”
The velocity is also down on Miller’s fastball, which is being reported at an average of 92.3mph this season as opposed to 94mph in previous years.
Maybe facing his old team will also help Miller, who was impressive in both his starts last year against St. Louis. On July 25th, he pitched 7.1 innings before Atlanta wound up losing 1-0 to the Cardinals and Shelby closed the season on October 4th with 8.0 shutout innings as the Braves won 6-0.
The Cardinals do have a pair of hitters that have taken Miller deep–Jedd Gyorko and Mike Leake each have a homer against the right-hander. The other St. Louis players with a hit against Shelby…
Matt Carpenter, 1-4
Yadier Molina, 1-3
Brandon Moss, 1-4
Kolten Wong, 1-6
Miller was acquired by Arizona this past off-season in a five-player deal which sent the Diamondbacks #1 draft pick and top selection overall of 2015, Darby Swanson, to Atlanta along with outfielder Ender Inciarte and RHP Aaron Blair.
— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) April 26, 2016
photo credit: Dale Zanine, Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports