Francisco Liriano will start the game for the home team. The southpaw turned in his best campaign since 2010, going 16-8 with a 3.02 ERA during the regular season. He struck out 163 batters over 161 innings while keeping his ground ball percentage above 50 percent.
Liriano started in the NL Wild Card game for Pittsburgh against the Cincinnati Reds, only allowing one run on four hits over seven innings. His slider looked devastating against the Reds, leading to five strikeouts. In that game, the Pirates' crowd had an unbelievable energy level that only increased as Liriano continued to deal.
Joe Kelly will square off against Liriano. Kelly went 10-5 this season with a 2.69 ERA, making 15 starts and 22 appearances out of the bullpen. Mike Matheny moved Kelly to the rotation full-time on July 16, and the right-hander posted a 2.28 ERA over 87 innings as a starter.
Kelly owns a below-average strikeout rate, but does a good job forcing groundballs; he finished the season with a 51-percent groundball rate, which would have been fifth-best among qualified NL starters. He also worked at least five innings in each of his last 15 outings, and St. Louis went 12-3 when he took the mound.
First pitch is scheduled for 4:37 p.m. ET, with coverage of the game on TBS. If you cannot watch the game, you can follow with our live stream of the event, which will feature scoring updates every two innings.