September 18, 2021

Sweeping Our Cares Away

August 12, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Earlier this year, the Cardinals took the first two games from the Toronto Blue Jays on the road and sent out Adam Wainwright to complete the sweep.  Wainwright, though, had one of his rare off games and the Cards weren’t able to use the brooms.

This time, though, Wainwright was able to seal the deal and continue to build his Cy Young case with seven scoreless innings, allowing only two hits.  Wainwright’s tied for the league lead in wins, only 2 points back from the league lead in ERA, and third (only 10 back) in strikeouts.  Who else can make a better all-around case, especially when you factor in that his team is in first place?  Some would probably put Josh Johnson in the discussion, but as much as wins have been discredited for pitchers, a seven win difference (17 for Waino, 10 for Johnson) has to factor in there somewhere.  Right now, I think Wainwright’s the leader in the clubhouse, as it were.

However, as great as he was yesterday, you can’t go away from Colby Rasmus as the Hero.  The birthday boy took a spectacular at-bat against a guy he’s been a bit critical about in the past.  He hung in there before finally getting his pitch and launching it over the wall for the grand slam.  That’s all you are going to need with Wainwright dealing, but Rasmus did have another hit and another run before it was all said and done.

Felipe Lopez gets the Goat with his 0-5 in the leadoff role.  One of the more impressive things about Rasmus’s grand slam is that it got to that point anyway, as Lopez had made the second out of the inning, leaving no one on.  I’m still not sure about trading off Ryan Ludwick, but you have to acknowledge that, at least right now, Jon Jay is doing the job.  His double started the rally that led to the slam.

Lots of off-the-field news as well from yesterday.  First off, Jeff Suppan goes on the DL with a strained muscle (I believe he strained it before crawling out of Tuesday’s brawl, but that might have aggravated it) and, because Jason LaRue wound up with a concussion from being kicked by Johnny Cueto (and how scary is it that, if it’d been an inch or two more, the Cards would have had their second freak blinding incident in three years) and with Memphis out on the West Coast, the Cardinals called up Springfield catcher Stephen Hill.

While Hill won’t be up long–either LaRue will come back or Bryan Anderson or Matt Pagnozzi will be recalled–it’ll be interesting to see if he gets a few at-bats or a start before being sent down.  I also was surprised to see that Hill is the first person to come directly from Springfield since the AA team was moved there five years ago.  The Cards really do take a deliberate approach with some of these prospects, making sure they get some AAA time.

Secondly, Kyle Lohse has been confirmed as pitching Sunday’s game against the Chicago Cubs.  Lohse had a dominant start in Memphis a couple of nights ago and seems ready to go.  Sliding him into the fifth slot only bolsters the rotation, especially if he’s anywhere close to 2008 form.  As Joe Strauss said in his chat yesterday, I don’t expect we’ll see Suppan again until rosters expand, and probably not a whole lot after that.

It’s the first time Cardinal Nation has been excited to see Kyle Lohse, I think.  I honestly think the surgery is going to help him a lot, and even if he can go out there and put up four runs in seven innings, that’ll win a lot of games when you are going against the back of another team’s rotation.

Did you know that Tuesday’s Cards/Reds game was the highest rated game ever on Fox Sports Midwest?  And that was before the brawl!  You have to figure that, if yesterday’s game had been a night one, they might have even topped those marks.  For your information, the second-place game is the night the Cards clinched the division vs. Houston back in 2000.  That game got a 14.7 share, Tuesday’s matchup got 17.6.  It’ll probably be a while before that mark is topped!

My friend Chris Jaffe has a regular slot over at Hardball Times.  Today, he writes up a Bob Gibson game that, while not one of his best ones, was a very memorable one anyway.  Head on over there and read up on a little Cardinal history.

Off days after day games are always rough.  You go over 48 hours without baseball and that’s never good.  Get through it the best you can and we’ll talk about the Cubs series tomorrow.

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