Right-hander Johnny Cueto and lefty Tony Cingrani locked up
Cardinals batters in the first two games — a 1-0 win and a 1-0
loss. But on Thursday, St. Louis erupted for seven runs on 11 hits
in a 7-6 series-clinching victory.
Matheny was pleased with the production from the bottom of his
order, most notably center fielder Jon Jay and shortstop Jhonny
Peralta, who combined for three RBIs, two on Peralta's two-run
homer. Still, Matheny wants to see more consistency.
"We had a lot of missed opportunities," said Matheny. "It's the sort
of thing we need to do more of."
Still, a team that made do with fewer home runs last season and
robust numbers with runners in scoring position is still adjusting
to the departures of Carlos Beltran and David Freese and trying to
figure out the best lineup combinations.
The Cardinals took extra batting practice and watched extra video
during the down time. After a 3:42 rain delay Thursday, the
Cardinals' bats woke up against Reds right-hander Homer Bailey.
"The first two days the pitchers were on, there wasn't too much
offense on either side," said Cardinals 1B Matt Adams, who went
3-for-5 with two doubles. "Today, it was an offensive game on both
sides. That's the game of baseball."
STREAK: Won one
NEXT: Cardinals (RHP Shelby Miller, 2013: 15-9, 3.06 ERA) at Pirates
(RHP Gerrit Cole, 2013: 10-7, 3.22 ERA)
OF Peter Bourjos was given a day off Thursday after going 0-for-6
with three strikeouts in the Cardinals' first two games. But the
rest was more about getting fresh legs into the lineup than about
Bourjos' struggles at the plate, says manager Mike Matheny. After
playing past midnight after a 2:40 rain delay, Jon Jay got the start
in center field in place of Bourjos.
OF Jon Jay gave Peter Bourjos a spell in center field on Thursday,
mostly because he was batting .280 with two doubles, a triple, and a
home run against the Reds' starting pitcher, right-hander Homer
Bailey. It was the first appearance for Jay, who struggled at the
plate during spring training.
RHP Lance Lynn's season debut got off to a rocky start, allowing
three runs and four hits, including two home runs, in the first
inning. But he battled for 107 pitches to earn his first win of the
season while walking one and striking out seven. "The first inning
hurt him as far as runs were concerned," said Cardinals manager Mike
Matheny. "He worked hard every single inning. He got himself into
trouble. But he made good pitches when he needed to."
QUOTE TO NOTE: "The first inning hurt him as far as runs were
concerned. He worked hard every single inning. He got himself into
trouble. But he made good pitches when he needed to." — Cardinals
manager Mike Matheny, on RHP Lance Lynn, who allowed three runs and
four hits, including two home runs, in the first inning of an
eventual 7-6 St. Louis win over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday.
[to top of second column]
INF Mark Ellis
(left knee tendinitis) went on the 15-day disabled list
retroactive to March 21. He might be able to return in
RHP Jason Motte
(Tommy John surgery in May 2013) went on the 15-day disabled
list retroactive to March 21. He pitched in extended spring
training April 1 and expects to do so again on April 5 and two
more the following week. No firm plans have been set for a minor
league rehab assignment.
LHP Jaime Garcia (left shoulder surgery
in May 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to
March 21. He experienced a setback in spring training, and he
will not be back until at least May.
RHP Adam Wainwright
RHP Michael Wacha
RHP Lance Lynn
RHP Shelby Miller
RHP Joe Kelly
1B Matt Adams
2B Kolten Wong
SS Jhonny Peralta
3B Matt Carpenter
INF Daniel Descalso
INF Pete Kozma
LF Matt Holliday
CF Peter Bourjos
RF Allen Craig
OF Jon Jay
OF Shane Robinson
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