April 2009

Wednesday late-night tidbits

Wanted to make sure I checked in with you all before getting a few days off. I won’t be accompanying the team to DC, instead hooking back up with them at home on Monday.

* Brendan Ryan’s hamstring injury was right in the middle of the muscle, rather than up high as it initially appeared when he grabbed it. The initial estimate appears to be 5-7 days, but because of the short bench, the injury to Khalil Greene and Ryan Ludwick’s illness, they’re almost certainly going to make a move. And that move would most likely be to place Ryan on the DL and call up an infielder, with Tyler Greene making the most sense.

* Ludwick is day to day, it’s not really a big deal, but TLR said he may be held out of Thursday’s game.

* Al Hrabosky asked me to pass the following along. The Al Hrabosky House for the Charli Anna Foundation will be holding a Cardinals Alumni vs. Blues Alumni charity softball game on May 9 at TR Hughes Ballpark in O’Fallon, Mo. Among the players announced as participating are Hrabosky, Jack Clark, Whitey Herzog, Mike Matheny and Todd Worrell on the Cardinals side, and Kelly Chase, Scott Mellanby, Terrry Yake and Jim Campbell on the Blues side. Tickets are $10 ($15 day of event) and can be purchased at the River City Rascals website.

Today’s playlist comes from Athens, Ga., after I made a trip out there to visit an old friend. Excellent day, and of course excellent music.

B-52s, “Rock Lobster”
R.E.M., “Harborcoat”
Matthew Sweet, “Girlfriend”
Indigo Girls, “Land of Canaan”
Pylon, “Crazy”

-M.

Greene out with forearm discomfort; plus, the lineup

Cardinals shortstop Khalil Greene has been scratched due to discomfort in his right forearm and is expected to be out of the lineup for roughly two to three days.

Manager Tony La Russa said that Greene is probably available to pinch-hit, since the condition is more of a problem when Greene throws than when he swings a bat. Brendan Ryan got the start at shortstop in Greene’s absence on Wednesday night. Greene said the that he has felt some discomfort in his forearm for a few days, but that it got significantly worse during Tuesday night’s loss to the Braves.

“Yesterday before the game it felt OK,” Greene said on Wednesday afternoon, “but towards the end of the game it was really bothering me.”

It’s been a rough start to the season for Greene, who has not had a great deal of success at the plate or in the field. He’s batting .219 with a .324 on-base percentage and .344 slugging percentage, and he’s been charged with five errors on defense.

———-

And, here’s the lineup, sans Greene, vs RHP Javier Vazquez:
1. Schumaker 2B
2. Rasmus RF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Duncan LF
5. Ankiel CF
6. Molina C
7. Thurston 3B
8. Ryan SS
9. Wainwright P

-M.

Tuesday lineup: Barden leads off

We have a few clouds but it’s another gorgeous day at at Turner Field.

Today’s lineup vs. LHP Jo-Jo Reyes:
1. Barden 3B
2. Rasmus CF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Molina C
6. Duncan LF
7. Greene SS
8. Ryan 2B
9. Lohse RHP

-M.

Monday evening tidbits: Greene gets a rest

It’s an absolutely perfect night for ball at Turner Field. Warm greetings from the city where I first saw Major League Baseball, way way back in the early 1980s.

* Khalil Greene gets a breather tonight in favor of Brendan Ryan. TLR pointed to Greene’s subpar career numbers at Turner Field (6-for-46 lifetime) as the main reason. He basically said that Greene was going to get a day at SOME point in this 20-straight-games stretch, so this was the one that made sense. I’m not a big believer in a number like that, but I’m not the manager. And it makes some sense to try to get Ryan in the lineup, since he’s playing very well.

* Pujols said he never gets tired of winning Player of the Week, and that in fact he still has all the watches he’s received for winning the award.

* Of more note, he said he had no issues with the way the Cubs handled things yesterday, as far as hitting him after Soriano was hit.

* TLR said they’ll be sticking with 13 pitchers for a while, had no complaints with how it’s been working out. He doesn’t feel that anybody’s gotten stale as a result of the arrangement.

Today’s playlist all comes from XM First Wave, which I listened to during my flight on AirTran today. Never flew them before. Haven’t gotten home yet, so I will reserve SOME judgment, but after one-half of a trip, I think I’d fly them again.

Sisters of Mercy: “This Corrosion”
O.M.D.: “So In Love”
Yaz: “Situation”
Midnight Oil: “Forgotten Years”
Human League: “(Keep Feeling) Fascination”

-M.

Monday lineup

* As you may have already heard, Albert Pujols was named National League Player of the Week today.

* The lineup vs RHP Jair Jurrjens:
1. Schumaker 2B
2. Ankiel CF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Duncan LF
6. Molina C
7. Thurston 3B
8. Ryan SS
9. Pineiro RHP

Talked to Greene, and he said there’s no physical issue. Will ask TLR shortly about the decision there. That and other tidbits to come later this afternoon from Atlanta.

-M.

Sunday lineup

Tidbits to come, but for now, here’s the lineup on another day a lot like yesterday — warm, windy and a little hazy.

Vs RHP Rich Harden:
1. Schumaker 2B
2. Rasmus LF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Ankiel CF
6. Molina C
7. Greene SS
8. Thurston 3B
9. Wellemeyer P

-M.

Saturday lineup and a tidbit or two

Hello from Busch Stadium, where it’s warm, breezy and hazy.

Today’s lineup vs LHP Sean Marshall:

1. Ryan 2B
2. Rasmus CF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Molina C
6. Duncan LF
7. Greene SS
8. Barden 3B
9. Boggs RHP

* Per TLR, they’re not expecting Lohse to throw a side session today. Instead, they’ll let him rest the knee a little while longer, which isn’t a big surprise. However, the plan remains for him to make his scheduled start on Tuesday.

* They’d really like to get Boyer in a game, but haven’t had an appropriate situation. Would like to ease him in, if possible.

* Walters is probably not available, and McClellan and Franklin fall in the category of available if needed to secure a win, but they’d like to give them a break.

Today’s playlist:
Babybird, “You’re Gorgeous”
U2, “The Playboy Mansion”
Peter Gabriel, “Secret World”
Uncle Tupelo, “Screen Door”
Material Issue, “Cowboy Song”

-M.

Friday lineup

Tonight’s lineup vs RHP Ryan Dempster:

1. Schumaker 2B
2. Ankiel CF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Duncan LF
6. Molina C
7. Greene SS
8. Thurston 3B
9. Wainwright P

-M.

Lohse does not expect to miss a start

Kyle Lohse does not expect to miss a start in the wake of a right knee injury he sustained during his start on Thursday against the Mets.

Lohse underwent an MRI exam on Thursday night, and the scan revealed no structural damage to the joint. He has some swelling and fluid in his knee, and acknowledged some soreness on Friday, but nonetheless believes he will be clear to pitch on Tuesday in Atlanta. The right-hander hurt his knee when he stopped awkwardly while trying to field a ground ball in the fifth inning on Thursday.

“Structurally, everything’s good,” Lohse said. “The ligaments, cartilage and everything looks like it’s supposed to. When I stopped like that, I put too much pressure behind the patella and all the joint. So I’ve got a little bit of swelling and fluid in there, and we’ve got to get that out. I’m going to be sore, but I can deal with that as long as it not structurally messed up.”

Lohse planned to play catch on Friday and hoped to be able to test his knee with a bullpen session on Saturday.

“As long as I can push off like I need to, I’m not going to hurt my arm trying to pitch through something like that,” he said. “I talked to the trainers and they’re going to let me go throw, do my normal throwing stuff.”

Of greater concern than the knee itself is the possibility that Lohse might alter his throwing motion as a result of knee discomfort, which could lead to an arm injury. That’s one thing that will be watched closely when and if he throws his side session on Saturday.

“If I’m favoring it, not able to push off it in the same way, then I’m probably going to end up with an arm injury after that,” he said. “So I’ve got to be careful with it and look at the big picture, but the way it is right now, I think I should be all right.”

Thursday lineup

Thursday’s lineup vs RHP Livan Hernandez:

1. Schumaker 2B
2. Rasmus LF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Ludwick RF
5. Ankiel CF
6. Barden 3B
7. Ryan SS
8. LaRue C
9. Lohse P

-M.

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