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Series Preview: Cardinals vs. Giants

Fresh off a 6-3 road trip that pushed their record to 10 games over the .500 mark, the Cardinals will host the defending World Series champion Giants at Busch Stadium.

San Francisco, 28-24 overall and 15-16 on the road, learned Sunday that star catcher Buster Posey is indeed out for the season after breaking his leg and tearing ligaments in his ankle in a collision at home plate last week against the Marlins.

The Giants have won one of their last five games and scoring runs continues to be their biggest issue. During their six-game swoon, San Francisco has scored two runs or less four times.

The Cardinals, 32-22 overall and 14-9 at home, are 10-3 in their last 13 games and have a 12-3 record at home since the opening week of the season.

Pitching match-ups:

Madison Bumgarner (1-6, 3.79) will start the opener for San Francisco against the Cardinals Kyle McClellan (6-1, 3.11). Bumgarner has a 2.89 ERA on the road. But it hasn't paid off because he's got a 1-4 record away from his home park. He's 1-0 lifetime against the St. Louis with a 3.57 ERA. The Redbirds are 9-1 in games that McClellan has started this year. He's never started against San Francisco before. But Mac has never allowed the Giants to score a run against him in 5 2/3 innings of relief work.

In game two, Ryan Vogelsong (3-1, 1.77) will take on Chris Carpenter (1-5, 4.58). Vogelsong has made six starts this season. He's been hit hard in the past by the Cardinals who used a .322 batting average against him to win four of five decisions against the San Francisco starter. Carpenter is really starting to show the strain of several hard luck losses. No matter how much of a professional or veteran he is, it's impossible for a human being not to start to wonder why me or what's going to go wrong next? Hopefully the Cardinals can get him a few runs and get the ball rolling for a John Tudor-like turnaround.

Tim Lincecum (5-4, 2.22) will start game three for the Giants against Jake Westbrook (5-3, 5.19). Lincecum has allowed 1.05 baserunners per inning pitched but has been a victim of the weak San Francisco offense. He's 5-1 lifetime against the Cardinals with a 2.23 ERA. Westbrook continues to be hot after a poor start. He's won three games in a row for St. Louis. He's made one career start against the Giants and has no record.

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