This series could prove crucial down the stretch, as the Pirates currently lead the Cardinals by two games for the second National League wild card spot. As Pirates fans know all too well, this is the first time in 15 seasons that the Buccos have played playoff-relevant baseball this late into the regular season.
After winning the series opener, 2-1, on Friday night, the Pirates will send Erik Bedard to the hill in search of his third win in as many starts. In his first full season since 2007, Bedard has been dazzling at times -- and frustrating at others. Overall, he is 7-12 with a 4.56 ERA.
The Cardinals will counter with Lance Lynn, who began the season as one of the hottest pitchers in baseball, but has struggled for months to recapture his early season magic.