Kyle Lohse was one of the best pitchers in baseball last season while pitching for St. Louis. Perhaps a return to Busch Stadium will get him going on Sunday when the Milwaukee Brewers conclude a three-game series against the Cardinals.
Lohse enjoyed one of the best seasons of his career last year with the Cardinals, as he posted a 16-3 mark to go along with a 2.86 ERA. However, the right-hander has yet to find his way since signing with the Brewers and heads into Sunday's finale having lost three straight decisions and is just 1-4 with a 3.49 ERA.
Milwaukee, though, is averaging just over two runs per game when he starts.
Lohse pitched well against Pittsburgh on Tuesday, but did not get a decision, despite surrendering two runs and five hits in 5 2/3 innings of a 4-3 loss.
"It wasn't one of my best nights, but a key for me when I'm having one of those nights is just not make the big mistake," Lohse said. "Not fall behind and leave a ball over the plate and try to stay out of trouble. It ends up being five walks, that's not pretty, but I was just trying to stay out of the middle of the plate."
Lohse lost to the Cards earlier in the year and is 2-4 lifetime against them with a 3.65 ERA.
St. Louis, meanwhile, will counter with 24-year-old lefty John Gast, who will be making his second big league start. Filling in for the injured Jake Westbrook, Gast defeated the New York Mets in his debut, as he allowed four runs and six hits in six innings.
"Hats off to our system and some of the things that they have done as far as the draft goes and development to give us some guys who are ready," Cards manager Mike Matheny said. "How that plays long term? There's a lot of time between now and long term. Right now, they're contributing and they're helping us, and we couldn't ask for anything more."
Milwaukee picked up a rare win in this matchup on Saturday, as Jeff Bianchi's two-run single in the 10th inning carried the Brewers to a 6-4 victory.
Ryan Braun started the 10th with a single through the middle off Joe Kelly (0-2) and moved to third when Aramis Ramirez dropped a bloop single into right. After Jonathan Lucroy grounded out, Carlos Gomez was issued a free pass to load the bases. Pinch-hitter Logan Schafer hit into a 6-2 fielder's choice that saw Braun forced out at home, but Bianchi followed with a single up the middle for a 6-4 advantage.
"You get a guy at third base with no out, all of a sudden the next two guys make outs," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "And we get a big hit."
Jim Henderson set the Cardinals down in order in the bottom of the 10th to pick up his eighth save of the season.
Jean Segura and Braun each had three hits and two RBI while Ramirez added three hits and a run scored for the Brewers, who had dropped eight of nine overall and beat the Cards for just the second time in nine games this season.
John Axford (1-3) pitched 1 1/3 innings to get the win.
Matt Carpenter drove in two while Jon Jay and Pete Kozma each had an RBI for the Cardinals, who lost for just the second time in their last six games.