April 14: Brewers @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (4-4, -3.0 in NL Central), Brewers (4-4, -3.0 in NL Central)

First pitch: 12:45 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Jeremy Hazelbaker (RF), Matt Holliday (LF), Brandon Moss (1B), Randal Grichuk (CF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Aledmys Diaz (SS), Jaime Garcia (LHP)

Brewers lineup:  TBA

Transactions: None

Reading material:

  • After having just one 30-pitch inning last season, Trevor Rosenthal already has two in 2016 (link)
  • Game recap from the Brewers’ 6-4 win over the Cardinals on Wednesday (link)
  • Cardinals’ starting pitching depth thinned as Marco Gonzales will miss the season due to elbow surgery (link)
  • Ruben Tejada to begin rehab assignment on Thursday; could return to St. Louis as early as Sunday (link)

Follow me on Twitter (@Langosch), Instagram (LangoschMLB) and Facebook (Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com)


Wanna’ bet Piscotty doesn’t end up taking the day off? What better than for MM to put him in, if the Cards get behind? It’s probably more like he’s not starting today. But, then again….I dunno’. Maybe I’m wrong. : )
Gonzales on the DL for the rest of the season isn’t that bigga’ deal, the way I see it. As I’ve always contended…he still needs some work developing his pitches & isn’t truly quite ready for prime-time yet. Unfortunately, that’s the same way I feel about Lyons.
I had such hopes for Grichuk the other day. With all the walks he drew, I was hoping it was an indication he was becoming more selective in his at-bats. But maybe it was a fluke?
And Lord help us. Everybody cross their fingers that Jaime doesn’t stub his toe today…or even worse? Gets a hang-nail. Tee-hee.

Well Jaime has had a great outing so far and the offense has also shown up including Grichuk. Hope they stay as consistent as possible to stay in touch with the division leaders.

Yeah, buddy! Jaime’s looking simply FABULOUS today!!! Geez, he just got another hit too, as a matter of fact….putting him at 2 for 3 today!
Grichuk may be onto something. Perhaps he IS becoming a better hitter. I’m more than happy to be wrong!
Hazelbaker stays at.500….with 13 for 26. He’s sure sumpin’….

Too bad, so sad. The 8-1 Cubs are now 8-2….after the 5-4 Rockies whooped ’em & went to 6-4! Colorado beat Chicago in a 6-1 victory.
Tonite’s game will really show what the Cards are made of playing a good team like the Reds. Pre-game? The Cards & Reds are tied for 2nd place in the NLCentral. So, OK…let’s play ball!

Boy, the next 6 games are gonna’ be extra tough! First the Reds who’re #2 in the NLCentral…and then the #1 Cubbies right after that. Pretty darned lucky that we’ll play both teams at home. With the usual 5 days rest…I think that puts Jaime vs Chicago this Tuesday nite.
I wonder tho’….which Cubs’ pitcher will start their first game with the Cards this Monday. I don’t know how their pitching rotation goes.
As is typical, the first game of a series usually sets the tone…

The Cubs handily swept the NL Central’s #2 Reds, as of just now. Scores for the past three games were 5-3, 9-2….and 8-1 just tonite.
Yikes….I’m scared come Monday. Kinda’ looks like the Cubbies could kick our proverbial butts. Ouch! ~grin~
Next for the Cubs (at home), they have a 3-game series with the Rockies (#2 in the NL West)…without even a day off before they travel here.
Let’s hope Chicago’s totally exhausted by the time they arrive at our beloved Busch Stadium. : )

By the way, the 7-3 Dbacks did manage to beat the 8-1 Cubs on 04/08. Just sayin’….

Anyone else worried about Waino like me?

We should definitely now be worried. Wainwright is no longer a first ranked pitcher as age appears to be catching up significantly (as should have been evident from the 2013 and 2014 post seasons. The offense has looked fun, but against the weaker teams. At least this shows promise.

Yeah, I think Wainwright’s kinda’ lost his edge. But we’re loaded with pitching. Besides, we still have Reyes, who becomes available on May 18th, I think?
The offense has been pretty darned good, actually. The team can only improve as the season goes on. They weren’t in sync the first few games, but they’re definitely looking better with each game.
I about had a heart-attack today, when they said MM was warming up Lyons. Thank goodness MM kept Oh in. Whew…we clearly dodged a bullet there! Ha!!!
There’s a long way to go yet….so let’s see what happens.
As for Waino? Not sure how to deal with that. He’s a good guy, but geez. Aas much as I hate to say it? He just might belong in the bull-pen at this point. Boo-hoo. : (

So Lyons is your new Randy Choate?

Not exactly. Lyons may still have potential, where “Choke” didn’t. Rather than pure heat, some pitchers have that special something, an odd movement or break in their pitches that’s difficult for batters to anticipate. Jaime seemed to have it the other day. Lackey’s had it. Now, Lyons needs to figure that out.
But can he…while playing as a regular? Gotta’ say, that’s a tall order. It’s something you work on in the minors & try to perfect BEFORE being called up….but Lyons was out of options.
I dunno’. Maybe Lyons will ultimately get traded…and THEN grow into a decent hurler with a more expanded arsenal plus some added finesse, ala Shelby Miller.
I simply feel Tyler’s just not there yet.
MM’s interview this morning by the way, contained some interesting remarks:

Let’s all take a deep breath here. Just keep in mind…we totally did without Waino all of last year. Um, so how did THAT turn out??? Hahaha.
Speaking of Oh? MM will be making a huge mistake by not using him as THE main set-up guy. (As often as possible, I mean.) You have to admit, he did a terrific job with Votto this afternoon! My new idol….”The Stone Buddha”!!!!!

OK, the Cubs’ 3-game series begins tomorrow. Projected pitchers for the 3 games in order, are as follows: Leake vs. Lackey, Jaime vs. Hammel & Martinez vs Hendricks. At least we won’t have to deal with Arrieta.
It’s gonna’ be a real hoot to hear how the Cards’ fans react when Heyward & Lackey are introduced. The boos for Heyward will be deafening. Hahaha.
How ’bout Fryer in today’s win. He went 3 for 3, giving him a 1000. BA. Heck, Diaz is batting .406. MM might oughtta’ keep Diaz at SS instead of Tejada…..right?
Greg Garcia (.600) has clearly been batting better than Kozma ever used to. However, he’s not the fielder Kozma was.
Luckily, likely due to the rivalry…ESPN will be telecasting Monday’s game, followed by the 2 other games on the MLBN….which will be nice for you out-of-market folks.
Pretty funny that so far, Jaime’s BA is .600….and Martinez is carrying a respectable .333….no? Aw, Hazelbaker’s BA has dropped down to .394….darn it. ; )

Good win yesterday, but that 9-8 loss still bugs me because we were up 4-0 and let it slip away. Cubs series will be important because it’ll set up a tight spring race if we take 2 of 3. It’ll also give the Pirates a chance to gain some ground too.
My take on Lyons is he’ll end up a lefty specialist so we might as well keep him. He’s alot better than Choate ever was and we always seem to be looking for a lefty every spring so we might as well keep him, as long as the dollar amount stays reasonable.I also think Adams is playing his way into a trade. Holiday and Moss will end up the right/left combo at 1st. AND who knows about Perralta’s position when he returns? Could he play 1st and keep Diaz at SS? I think he could make a good 1st baseman if he was agreeable to the switch. This would make Adams even more likely to be traded.

Gosh, that hadn’t crossed my mind. With 33 y/o Peralta healthy again….you’re right. Then what? (Jhonny’s signed thru 2017.) Playing him occasionally at 1B is an interesting option to consider.
As for Adams…if he would come up with a .300+ BA by the end of August….trade him anyway? One consideration is that Moss (32 y/o) only signed for 1 year. So Adams & Holliday (L/R) could alternate 1B. Then again, trading Adams & re-signing Moss provides an outfield alternative, which Adams does not. Brandon’s BA toward the end of the season, will be a strong determining factor, just like Adams’ will.
Gyorko (28 y/o) is signed thru 2019. Guess he only backs up Wong at 2nd & Carp at 3rd from now on.
This is gonna’ be an awfully difficult situation to figure out. Whewy, baby!
And over the next 3 days? I’m afraid the Cards will be lucky to take 1 out of 3 from the Cubs. Gawd, I can’t tell ya’ how MUCH I hope I’m wrong….
Dusty Baker’s Nationals, will be a really extra tough series, too. Thankfully, we play our first match-up with THEM at home, as well. Their 3-game series starts Friday 4/29.

Tonite’s game: Outfield-(L-R) Holliday, Hazelbaker & Piscotty. Moss at 1B, Wong 2nd…and Diaz at SS. Carp & Yadi in too.
Leake is 9-2 vs the Cubs, but that was last years Cubs. Heyward’s BA is currently .205.

Yup, just like I thought. Greg Garcia had to go back to the minors make room for Tejada’s return tonite. Garcia’s sorta’ the opposite of Kozma. Bats well, but average fielder at best. That’s the one thing Kozma did well. Great infielder.

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