Colorado left-hander Jeff Francis, in his eighth season, has a 1.69 ERA in his last three starts after giving up 12 earned runs in his first two starts of the season. He went a season-high six innings in his most recent start, against the Padres, giving up no runs on three hits and earning his first win of the season.
The Rockies switched to a four-man rotation just before Francis' last three starts. He's averaged just under 75 pitches in those three outings, right around the Rockies' established limit for starters.
The different style of pitching hasn't bothered him so far.
"If you want to win, you've got to be a team player," Francis said. "If you're not happy about it, go somewhere else. If we're going to win, we're going to go about it that way, so be happy about it."
Right-hander Joe Kelly, 24, will start for the Cardinals, who won Monday's series opener, 9-3. Kelly has a 2.89 ERA in two starts at Busch Stadium. In his previous start, the fourth of his career, he gave up two runs on five hits in six innings against the Marlins in Miami.
"It looked like he was pitching more today and not just relying on just stuff," said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny after the start. "It looked like he was thinking. ... Joe was locating his pitches, and I think that was probably his best outing."
The Cardinals are 7-3 in their last 10 games.
Cardinals: Three Latin American prospects sign
On the first day of the international signing period, the Cardinals agreed to terms with outfielder Luis Bandes, catcher Joshua Lopez and shortstop Edmundo Sosa, all 16-year-olds from Latin America.
All three prospects will be assigned to the Cardinals' academy in the Dominican Republic, contingent on their passing a background check and a physical.
Bandes and Lopez are from Venezuela. Sosa, from Panama, is considered one of the top shortstops available in this signing period.
The new Collective Bargaining Agreement gives each club a pool of $2.9 million to spend on international free agents.
Rockies: Friedrich's start pushed back a day
Originally scheduled to pitch on Wednesday, Christian Friedrich will instead start the series finale on Thursday. A batted ball hit his right calf in his start on Saturday.
"The most important thing is making sure I'm not changing anything to alter my mechanics, because that's how people start getting hurt," Friedrich said. "I'm seeing how it feels. I've played catch pretty well. I haven't run yet, but we'll see how that goes."
Jeremy Guthrie, the Rockies' Opening Day starter but now used in relief, will start on Wednesday, and he will not be subject to the same 75-pitch limit as those in the rotation.
St. Louis' Matt Holliday, who went 2-for-3 with a homer on Monday, is batting .500 since June 16.
With 48 triples, the Rockies' Dexter Fowler is one away from tying Neifi Perez for the most in Rockies' history. Fowler did not start on Monday and grounded into a double play in his only at-bat. Manager Jim Tracy said that the training staff has been treating Fowler for soreness in his left lat.