Cheap Seats

Pirates to skip Burnett, start Cole vs. Wainwright's Cardinals

The Pittsburgh Pirates have announced that they're going to skip A.J. Burnett in their starting rotation and hand the ball to rookie Garrit Cole for the winner take all fifth game of their National League Division Series against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Cole beat the Cardinals in Game 2 of the series, a lopsided 7-1 game, with one run allowed on two hits over six innings. He struck out five St. Louis batter and walked one. Meanwhile, Burnett was pounded by the Redbirds in Game 1.

The Game 2 match up was the first time the Cardinals have seen Cole, the former number one overall draft choice. The rookie hurler has won his last five decisions and is 5-3 with a 2.92 ERA over his last 10 games of the regular season.

The Cardinals will counter with ace Adam Wainwright who led the National League in 2013 with 13 wins. This season he was 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA against the Pirates with 15 hits allowed in 21 innings. He struck out 20 and walked six. Wainwright has also won his last five consecutive decisions with a 1.80 ERA over that span.

Of course, Cole's Game 2 win is his only post season appearance. Wainwright is 3-0 with a 2.27 ERA and four saves in four post season series and he is the owner of two World Series rings.