September 5: Pirates @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/

Records: Cardinals (86-48, +5.5 in NL Central), Pirates (80-53, -5.5 in NL Central)

First pitch: 3:05 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports 1, Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Stephen Piscotty (LF), Jason Heyward (RF), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Brandon Moss (1B), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Jon Jay (CF), Jaime Garcia (LHP)

Pirates lineup: Josh Harrison (2B), Jordy Mercer (SS), Andrew McCutchen (CF), Jung Ho Kang (3B), Starling Marte (LF), Michael Morse (1B), Sean Rodriguez (RF), Chris Stewart (C), Charlie Mortion (RHP)

Transactions: None

Reading material:

  • Are Carlos Martinez’s recent results a reason for concern? (link)
  • Game recap from the Pirates’ 9-3 win over the Cardinals on Friday (link)
  • After missing 57 games, Jon Jay returns from the 15-day disabled list (link)
  • Matt Belisle faces batters, plus a comprehensive injury rundown on rehabbing Cardinals (link)
  • Preview for Saturday’s game between the Cardinals and Pirates (link)

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Oh boy, a noodle arm OFer who can slap a hit up the middle while continually leaving RISP w 2 outs. The absolute worst OFer on the team. Use him as a pinch hitter who can slap a 12 bounce single – don’t count on an extra base hit though – or get HBP.

Pre-game interview with Pirates broadcaster John Wehner. When asked what happened with their losses to the Brewers? He said he had no idea. Maybe their pitchers had the Pirates number???
And Mr Richman, if you’re talking about JJay? Only fair to wait & see, before starting with the criticisms.

Good game. Might have been good to use Broxton in 9th as might need Rosenthal fresh tomorrow. Garcia was strong again. Jay will probably contribute at the plate and would be a clear choice over Bourjos on the post-season roster. Tomorrow night is a national broadcast will see if they can win again but will be no worse than 5.5 in front with 3 weeks to go.

Yeah, I was kinda’ thinking the same thing. Bourjos has been decent. But Jay could be decent or possibly better. He was getting on base almost every at-bat, until his wrist injury.
It was tough to take the loss last nite. However, as always…gotta’ remember we can’t win every single game.
I wonder how we’ll do at the 3 game series with the Brewers, Sept 15, 16 & 17? I mean, considering they did sweep the Pirates.
I gotta’ say, Jaime was spectacular today. Never really had a doubt he’d pitch well.
An article I read, said Jaime’s gonna’ be pitching for “his life” in the next few weeks. His performance will ultimately determine what type of contract he’ll be able to get, post-season.

As for Rosenthal? Not a bad idea about pitching Broxton instead. But maybe rest is relative thing. Too much, not enuf’…who knows. Sure didn’t seem like the extra rest helped Martinez all that much. But then he’s only 22 and well, an inexperienced kid. He’s got the tools…but his mental could likely use a little tweak now and then.
Heck by the time he’s 30? Carlos should be far more reliable, and able to “adjust” as needed.
Frankly, I’m amazed at what Piscotty’s done so far. He’s unbelievably consistent. An eye for pitches far & beyond most other rookies. He’s been a terrific substitute for Holliday. And then too? Wait ’til Grichuk is back. That’ll be fun, eh?

Great win. Now its time for the playoffs. Cards, Dodgers,Mets Pirates and Cubs. No one else is making any noise. The Nats are done. Mets are an interesting team this year. Pitch like crazy no hit………..who does that sound like?

I think Martinez will be fine. Hopefully its just one of those streches he has to work through as do hitters sometimes. IF we win today it’ll be interesting as to how MM plays out the rest of the season. Starters need sometime off and bench guys need some at bats. That said securing home field is a must for the Cards considering our home field record. Forget what the pundits say, it works for us!!

That’s maybe another reason the Cards haven’t gotten much respect. Pitching like crazy…but often lacking in offense. Even when Holliday WAS healthy. Better lately tho’, after acquiring Reynolds & Moss…and Grichuk, Piscotty & Pham were called up.
The Cubs are in Mon, Tues & Wed. Wonder who we’ll have pitching then. The Cubs are only 3 games behind the Pirates. Enuf’ games left for that to change.
I guess in a way, I’m hoping the Cubs can catch up to the Bucs. Been a while since the Cubbies have been in the playoffs.
In 2003 they won the division, but lost to the Marlins in the NL playoffs. It was way back in 1908, that they won the WS.
To digress? One of the most interesting off-season scenarios, in my opinion…will be whether the Cards make an offer to Jaime or not. I still maintain that he leans on his “delicate” health issues a little more than is valid. Also…there was mention a while back, that Jaime wasn’t fond of his rehab pitching assignments in the minors.
If the Cards weren’t in the running? I wonder if Garcia might “feel” he still needs be on the DL. Here’s an excerpt from a 2014 article in
There’s been a lot of talk in the last couple of years that Garcia was “soft” and “mentally weak”.
That’s not to mention the rift between Garcia & the front office (Mo) regarding the whole situation surrounding his last surgery.
But, there’s no question that Jaime’s got some extra nasty stuff. So…the Cards can exercise their option on him, if Mo & MM decide they do want him for next year.
KMOX interviews this morning: Currently, Grichuk can & has been swinging a bat. But throwing remains an issue. Holiday still seems to have a subtle limp. Post-season will probably involve more than usual platooning, which is pretty much a given. A theory proposed on Martinez, is that he may simply get overly amped- up with TOO much rest.
Lastly, unless Jay begins hitting around .300+ in the next several games? He won’t likely be on the post-season roster. Duh. Haha.

Wow, lots to reply to.First many look at our lack of offense, forget to look at that the runs against us is only 411, tops in the majors.Second, I see Garcia getting an offer so when he signs elsewhere we’ll have a compensation pick(s).If it were me I’d exercise the option and say good-bye next year. Holiday will only come in handy only if we make the WS and can DH in the AL parks. The post-season roster will be interesting. Those healthy, but young vs. vets that have been away awhile and need time to shake the rust off. I think Jay will make the roster,but Bourjos won’t using Pham in his place…..maybe? I like what Pham can give us speed, some D and power.
Bourjos lacks the power thing.

I definitely think you’re right about Holliday primarily as a DH. And Pham’s probably a shoe-in too. I’m still not sure about Bourjos vs Jay…or maybe neither, I’m starting to think. There’s the arm & running speed comparisons of the 2 to be taken into account, besides BA. Only MM knows how everything stacks up between them.
There’s 1B and 3 outfield positions to play musical chairs with. So 4 positions total…to be split up between Grickhuk, Piscotty, Pham, Reynolds, Jay, Bourjos, Moss, Heyward, Holliday, maybe Adams (tho’ I doubt it). That’s 10 in all….or 9 w/o Adams. We’re closing in on end of the regular season. So even if Adams would get the doc’s OK say, as soon as next week? I don’t ultimately see him activated this late.
MM will probably wanna’ keep our bullpen as deep as possible, so there might not be room for either Jay OR Bourjos after all, is what I mean.
Plus…MM has a soft spot for Kozma, and I’m betting he’ll be on the final roster, too. Greg Garcia & Cody Stanley aren’t likely candidates to be one of the 25. But MM can do unexpected stuff. So who knows. Anything’s possible. The bottom line? All that’s contingent on whether the Cards’ current players can stay healthy.

Pre-game update? Jordan Walden’s been scratched as a possible reactivation this season. Matheny left today, to go to his grandfather’s funeral. Should be back tho’…by game time.

Grichuk reactivated today. Will be on the bench tonite for pinch-hitting only. No throwing or running.

Mo says Holliday will be back soon. Adams right after that. Belisle’s been throwing and should be back hopefully before post-season begins. But I think he said Grichuk might be running after all, if he bats & gets on base. Hmmm.

Correction. Grichuk’s available only to pinch-run (per Jen’s most recent tweet). So I guess that’s it.

A complete offensive wipe out tonight. Lackey pretty strong but not enough and almost time for Watson and Melancon. Hope they can find more offense from somewhere down the stretch.

Yup, afraid so. No offense to back up Lackey. The good thing tho’…is we didn’t get swept. Melancon will likely do us in.
So it’s on to the Cubbie game, tomorrow afternoon….

With the annoyance of a night start before a day game Yadi will probably have to sit out tomorrow. So that doesn’t help our chances.

And now they’re getting crushed for the 2nd time in the series. This will boost the Pirates confidence and energy levels going forward.

Aw, geez…it kills me that Milwaukee swept the Pirates and we couldn’t eve get one run tonite. I don’t get it.
Just glad it’s not a 4-game series. And you’re correct. The Pirates confidence is soaring right now.
As for Yadi? Who can say. Yadi I think, is a masochist. Unless MM vehemently argues that he rest a game? Yadi will insist on playing.

The call ups at least broke the shutout. Too little too late.

I have a problem watching Lyons. Good kid, but he doesn’t seem to have what it takes to be in the majors. Or at least…not yet. : (
I am however, a big fan of Mitch Harris. I think he should be a permanent fixture in the bullpen. Has the ability to be a long reliever, if needed.

Yeah sure. We tried to rally there at the end. At least we got 1 stinkin’ run. Ugh.

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