Diamondbacks Vs. Cardinals, Series Preview: Arizona Looks To Close Wild Card Race Gap

PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 24: Starting pitcher Ian Kennedy delivers a pitch against the San Francisco Giants during the third inning of a MLB game at Chase Field on September 24, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. Kennedy earned 21st victory of the year as the Diamondbacks won the game 15-2. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

The Arizona Diamondbacks sit four games back of the Cardinals in the Wild Card race and aim to close that gap with a crucial three-game series on the road this week.

The Arizona Diamondbacks have a chance to make up some ground in the National League wild card race this week, as they travel to St. Louis for a three-game series against the Cardinals. Arizona trails Mike Matheny's Cardinals by four games in the race and sits six games back of the two wild card spots after a disappointing series at home against the Washington Nationals.

The Diamondbacks lost two of the tree games against Washington and is now 5-6 in the month of August so far. The Cardinals, meanwhile, are 6-4 in their past ten games despite splitting a home series against the Giants and winning just once against the Phillies.

RHP Ian Kennedy (10-9, 4.34 ERA) will take on RHP Joe Kelly (2-5, 3.47 ERA) in the series opener on Tuesday night. Both pitchers are coming off rough outings in their last start, with Kennedy allowing seven runs (three unearned) with Kelly getting hit similarly hard against the Giants, allowing seven runs in five innings as well. First pitch is set for 5:15 p.m. with coverage on Fox Sports Arizona and KTAR.

LHP Joe Saunders (6-8, 3.52 ERA) faces RHP Adam Wainwright (10-10, 3.90 ERA) on Wednesday night. Wainwright has rebounded from a shaky start to the season following Tommy John surgery and has a 2.22 ERA over his past seven starts. Saunders is coming off a big win against the Pirates, allowing just three runs (two earned) in seven innings. First pitch is set for 5:15 p.m. with coverage on Fox Sports Arizona and KTAR.

RHP Trevor Cahill (9-10, 3.85 ERA) will take the mound against RHP Kyle Lohse (12-2, 2.72 ERA) on Thursday. Cahill has lost his last two starts despite pitching well overall and takes a 2.88 road ERA with him to St. Louis. Meanwhile, Kyle Lohse can seemingly do no wrong, having allowed five runs or more just once in his past ten starts. First pitch is set for 5:15 p.m. with coverage on Fox Sports Arizona and KTAR.

For more on the Arizona Diamondbacks, make sure to check out AZ Snake Pit.

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