Odds and ends from last night

A few things, mostly regarding last night’s game, before I head across the street for this afternoon’s contest…

* David Eckstein said that for a couple of reasons, the game-ending double play last night was tougher than it looked. One, the second-base umpire was directly in front of him, so when Isringhausen threw to Eckstein, he was throwing blind. That explains the lob-type throw, because Izzy just wanted to put it in the area so that Eckstein would have some chance. Two, apparently Eckstein got spiked on the play.

* Of all the performances that stand out, the one that really rings to me, even above Scott Spiezio ******* it up to play, was the bullpen. Hancock, Springer and Thompson were all struggling, and it was clear that other than Izzy, the one RHP that TLR had faith in was Franklin. But Franklin had gone twice in a row, so he was off limits. So for those guys, who had given up nine runs and gotten 22 outs all year, to get 13 outs in one night was a big deal. I asked the manager before the game whether they were still trying to protect Springer, to handle him gently, and this was the telling response:

"You try to, but tonight we don’t have Franklin. And there’s a question on Thompson and Hancock. There’s a question on Springer. Somebody’s got to pitch in a close game. So somebody’s going to go out there."

* To update many curious folks in Memphis, Randy Keisler’s dog did make the trip from to Pittsburgh. Karl the miniature English bulldog had nowhere to stay in Memphis, so Keisler brought him along. Keisler said after the game that he had yet to ask TLR’s permission to bring him on the flight back to STL, but here’s guessing that the mgr approves that request.

* For what it’s worth, TLR said the biggest point of the Pujols fly ball in the ninth was Eckstein’s move to second. He said he understood Bay throwing to third, but that to him, the striking part was Eckstein advancing on the play.

* In non-game-related matters, I just want to thank you all for dropping by here. The last week has been by far the most traffic I’ve ever gotten since I’ve had the blog, and I appreciate it. I like it even more when y’all take the time to comment. This is fun to do, so hopefully it’s fun to read as well.

* Weather update: As of right now, there’s nothing falling from the sky. According to the forecast, though, that will change soon. Per weather.com, at 1 pm there’s a 70 percent chance of rain, and it’s at least that high all the way through the evening. I’ll keep you posted on that particular issue. The Cards and Bucs both have off days tomorrow, but I’d think that if they DO postpone it, they’d prefer to push it back to a less-unpleasant time of year. One possible date is July 30. Both teams are off that day, and they start a series against one another at PNC Park in July 31. Or they could just schedule a doubleheader sometime down the road.

(currently playing on the iPod: Junior Boys, So This is Goodbye )

-M.

4 Comments

Great start for Keisler. What’s down on the farm that could replace Preston Wilson? There seemed to be some talent there during spring training. Wilson will be the Cards leader in K’s this year.

M.,

Thank you for writing the blogs. They have been very enjoyable.

On another note..are you suprised about the quality of the starting pitching this year? From what I can tell (and I watch every game on MLB.TV) they have been extraordinary.

~Ben

A little surprised, but not a lot. I’ve been very high on Wainwright and Wells all along. Didn’t expect Looper to fare so well, though.

-M.

Cute story with the dog. Personally, I love the blog. Anything to get us closer to the game.

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