Pittsburgh vs. Milwaukee
James McDonald (2-2, 4.38 ERA) gets the call for the visitors. McDonald has been erratic this year and his 15 total walks lead the NL at the moment. In his last start he gave up five hits and three runs in a no-decision vs. the Cardinals on April 27th (McDonald would finish a sub-par 6-6 with a pedestrian 5.95 ERA on the road last year). Marco Estrada gave up two runs off five hits over 6 1/3's frames of work and was unfortunate to be saddled with a 2-1 loss to the Padres on Wednesday; he struck out three and walked two in his first setback of the year. Here's a big opportunity for the right-hander to make an immediate return to the winners circle vs. a team he dominated last season, going 1-0 with a 1.83 ERA in three starts vs. the Pirates in 2012 (note that Estrada was 3-2 with a 2.97 ERA in friendly confines a season ago). Recent performance plays a part in my handicapping toolbox and in this case, there's no question that Estrada comes into this contest with considerable momentum. I simply can't see McDonald's control issues being 100% resolved since his last outing and believe the talent discrepancy on the mound justifies in laying this mid-sized price.