September 12: Cardinals (75-67) @ Padres (68-75)

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Jaime Garcia and Chris Carpenter each threw a bullpen session this afternoon at Petco Park. And both remain on schedule — Carpenter to throw a simulated game on Saturday, and Garcia to start Saturday’s game in Los Angeles. For now, the Cardinals have not altered Garcia’s schedule, though that’s not to say that a change might not still happen. If it does, it won’t be Carpenter taking Garcia’s place.

The emphasis with Garcia right now is getting him to mimic his home routine as closely as possible on days where he pitches on the road. That, more than mechanics, is being preached to him by staff.

Also today, Carlos Beltran sits out for what manager Mike Matheny calls both a physical and mental day. Beltran’s second-half average sits at .205. He has nine home runs and 22 RBIs since the All-Star break (51 games), compared to the 20 home runs and 65 RBIs he recorded in the first half (82 games).

And perhaps this is not the reminder you want, but it’s worth paying attention not only to the happenings with Pittsburgh and Los Angeles, but also the results in Philadelphia and Milwaukee. Yes, the Brewers and Phillies have both returned to the .500 mark, and the clubs now sit only four games behind the Cardinals for the second Wild Card spot. The Cards have allowed both teams to creep up by winning only four of their last 14.

In case you missed it, too, MLB unveiled the 2013 schedule today. Here is information about the Cardinals’ 162-game slate of games next season.

CARDINALS LINEUP:

  1. Jon Jay (CF)
  2. Matt Carpenter (RF)
  3. Matt Holliday (LF)
  4. Allen Craig (1B)
  5. Yadier Molina (C)
  6. David Freese (3B)
  7. Daniel Descalso (2B)
  8. Pete Kozma (SS)
  9. Kyle Lohse (RHP)

PADRES LINEUP:

  1. Everth Cabrera (SS)
  2. Will Venable (RF)
  3. Chase Headley (3B)
  4. Yasmani Grandal (C)
  5. Yonder Alonso (1B)
  6. Logan Forsythe (2B)
  7. Cameron Maybin (CF)
  8. Alexi Amarista (LF)
  9. Clayton Richard (LHP)

Division standings are here. Wild card standings are here.

Follow me on Twitter: @LangoschMLB

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