Results tagged ‘ David Freese ’
* Nick Punto will be headed to Florida when the Cardinals leave town for the West Coast. He’ll work out with the extended Spring Training folks for a few days, and could start playing EST games as soon as Monday.
* Matt Holliday continues to get closer. He ran on the field today and took some swings.
* Mitchell Boggs warmed up last night and would have come in the game in the 8th if the pitcher’s spot had come up in the bottom of the seventh. TLR said he’d still prefer to get Boggs one or two more low-leverage outings before really throwing him in the fire, but if the games don’t allow that, then the games don’t allow it.
* Tyler Greene will likely get a start over the weekend in San Francisco. He would play 2B against either Jonathan Sanchez on Friday or Barry Zito on Sunday. Greene is the only Cardinal hitter who has not started a game.
* ESPN announced that former Cardinal Mark Mulder will be doing some work on Baseball Tonight.
* Though TLR said yesterday that David Freese could have started today, in the end it was Daniel Descalso who got the call at 3B. The plan all along has been for Freese to play two out of three in the early going, so this isn’t a setback but rather just a case of staying with the plan.
And, finally, the playlist:
Letters to Cleo, “From Under the Dust”
New Order, “Elegia”
The Knife, “Neverland”
Nina Gordon, “Horses in the City”
R.E.M., “Gardening At Night”
Greetings from Busch Stadium on an absolutely gorgeous day. There are almost no clouds in the sky, the temperature reads 63 degrees on the signs in the bullpens and it appears we’re in for a very nice evening for baseball. And now on with the tidbits…
* Matt Holliday will not, for now, go on the disabled list. The club expects that he will be back before 15 days are up, and in fact more than a day or two before 15 days are up. So they’re going to play short in the interim. Holliday has done some running and throwing, and could swing a bat tomorrow.
* Gerald Laird is in for Yadier Molina, but it’s a scheduled day off for Molina. He suffered no significant ill effects from being jammed on a pitch last night.
* TLR said that there are no longer any real plans to go to 13 pitchers for the road trip. That idea was pretty much scuttled when Holliday became unavailable.
* The rotation has been announced for the start of the road trip, and it’s as expected. They’ll just roll the guys over: Westbrook on Friday against Jonathan Sanchez, Garcia against Matt Cain on Saturday and Lohse against Barry Zito on Sunday.
* David Freese may play tomorrow, which wouldn’t seem all that newsworthy except that it would be three straight games — something La Russa suggested was unlikely to happen much in the first couple months of the season.
And, finally, the playlist. It’s a themed one, all Nirvana in honor of the 17th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s death.
“Come As You Are”
“Heart Shaped Box”
“Where Did You Sleep Last Night”
Note of the night: It was a rough, rough night at the plate for David Freese. The Cardinals third baseman went 0-for-4 with a double play and two strikeouts, despite coming to the plate with at least one runner on base in every one of his at-bats.
He actually hit the ball that brought in the first Cardinals run, grounding into a double play with men on first and third and no out in the second inning. That followed a sweet hit-and-run that had gotten Lance Berkman over to third. But Freese grounded out with men on first and second in the fourth, struck out with a man on first in the sixth, and struck out with a man on second in the eighth.
He’s a better hitter than that, and he’ll do better than that in the future. Moreover, he wasn’t alone — Yadier Molina had a rough one, going 0-for-4 and three times stranding a runner on base at the end of an inning. Those two spots in the order really were the difference on Monday. If the 6-7 hitters had been able to keep rallies alive, things might have looked a lot different.
“I was putting myself in bad counts, and when you do that at the big league level, you’re not going to do too well,” Freese said. “It was a rough night. I had a few opportunities to drive guys in and I couldn’t make it happen. … [Charlie Morton] made a good pitch when he needed to. That’s how you get Ws. They did a good job over there of getting timely hits, playing good defense and obviously pitching well.”
The point of this is not to pick on Freese, but rather to note the fine line. One hit from him (or Molina) in one of those situations, it might be a much different game.
I’ll preach this a lot not only in the first few days but even the first couple of months of the season: it’s four games. If the Cardinals were 4-0 and had scored 30 runs, I’d be cautioning people not to buy World Series tickets. Because they’re 1-3 and have scored 11 runs, the requisite perspective is to know that there are some hitters in this lineup and they shouldn’t hit like this all year.
But for now, yeah, it’s not looking real good on the offensive side of things.
* Stat of the day: Brian Tallet has faced seven batters and none of them has reached base. He’s struck out three without issuing a walk, and 18 of his 29 pitches have gone for strikes.
I tweeted this earlier, and I think it’s true: there haven’t been many pleasant surprises in the early going, but Tallet has to count as one. And his usage pattern has been interesting. He hasn’t been a one batter guy. Two games, seven outs. There’s a role the Cardinals really haven’t had succesffully filled in a while, and it’s the left-hander who’s not strictly a one-batter guy.
If Tallet could be that one-inning lefty, a guy you bring in for an inning with mostly but not all left-handed hitters, he could be quite valuable. Think Steve Kline at his best for an idea of the role (though not necessarily of the type of pitcher). Now, to live by my own guidelines, I’m not turning Tallet into that guy after two games. But I think it bears watching.
It’s shaping up to be a gorgeous day in downtown St. Louis. Already into the 60s, and only a few clouds.
* The Cardinals are going to wait until Monday or Tuesday before deciding whether to place Matt Holliday on the DL. And yes, per TLR, it’s a question of whether they make a move, not when or what exactly the move will be. There’s still some hope that Holliday could be back in under 15 days, and if they felt confident that would be the case, it’s no guarantee that they’d make a move.
* In the interim, both the 4 spot and left field will be something of a job share. As you saw in today’s lineup, Allen Craig is playing left field while David Freese is batting fourth. Craig and Jon Jay will likely split time in left field. As for the cleanup spot, it looks like Freese against lefties and Lance Berkman against right-handers.
* Today is the 10th anniversary of Albert Pujols’ Major League debut. I’ll have a story on the site about it a little later today, so do be sure to come back and check it out. Should be a nifty little package.
And, finally, the playlist:
Soul Coughing, “Soundtrack to Mary”
Belly, “Feed the Tree”
Cake, “When You Sleep”
Violent Femmes, “Prove My Love”
R.E.M., “Exhuming McCarthy”
First, the lineup for tomorrow:
1. Theriot SS
2. Rasmus CF
3. Pujols 1B
4. Holliday LF
5. Berkman RF
6. Freese 3B
7. Molina C
8. Schumaker 2B
9. Carpenter P
As for the tidbits…
* Brian Tallet should be fully available tomorrow.
* Same goes for Matt Holliday. TLR said he had no real concerns about Holliday’s sore right big toe, and Holliday participated fully.
* Bryan Augenstein is wearing No. 22. He wore No. 44 in Arizona, but that’s taken by Miguel Batista, and he said that 22 is also a tribute to his high school pitching coach, George Estock, who passed away last fall. Estock wore 22 for the Braves in his only big league season, 1951.
* Kyle McClellan will have some kind of throw on Friday in advance of his first game, which will be Tuesday at home against the Pirates. He does not expect to face hitters, but he’ll get some work.
* TLR wasn’t giving much away about anything going forward. He did say that Daniel Descalso will be his primary backup option at 3B, ahead of Tyler Greene or Allen Craig. But he didn’t give any indication of how he intends to use Lance Berkman — i.e. whether or not he feels Berkman will require preventative days off in the early going.
And, finally, the playlist:
Material Issue, “International Pop Overthrow”
Dead Milkmen, “Punk Rock Girl”
Everclear, “Queen Of The Air”
Rancid, “Roots Radicals”
Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Knock Me Down”
Another gorgeous day in Jupiter, and t-minus 12 days to Opening Day. It’s getting here fast.
* According to TLR, Tyler Greene is still feeling quite ill and will not be in camp today.
It’s another gorgeous day in Jupiter, a little bit cool with no clouds.
A day after Chris Carpenter and Mitchell Boggs got hurt, there seems to be optimism regarding both, and particularly Carpenter.
* Nick Punto returned to camp Monday, his first day back after having surgery to repair his sports hernia. Punto is walking reasonably well, but that’s all he’s really allowed to do at this point. He also seemed to be in good spirits.