May 5: Cubs @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (19-6, +5.5 in NL Central), Cubs (13-11, -5.5 in NL Central)

First pitch: 7:15 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Jon Jay (CF), Matt Carpenter (3B), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Jason Heyward (RF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Tyler Lyons (LHP)

Cubs lineup: Dexter Fowler (CF), Anthony Rizzo (1B), Kris Bryan (3B), Jorge Soler (RF), Starlin Castro (SS), Junior Lake (LF), Welington Castillo (C), Kyle Hendricks (RHP), Addison Russell (2B)

Transactions: The Cardinals recall LHP Tyler Lyons from Triple-A Memphis and option RHP Sam Tuivailala.

Reading material:

  • At 19-6, the Cardinals are off to their best start in modern franchise history (link)
  • Tyler Lyons will make his audition for the Cardinals’ open rotation spot tonight (link)
  • Carlos Martinez had a “relapse” on Monday that manager Mike Matheny hopes he learns from (link)
  • How Matheny pieced together a four-man bullpen to cover five-plus innings on Monday (link)
  • Cardinals announce their 2015 Hall of Fame class (link)
  • Columnist Mike Bauman looks at how the Cardinals have rallied around Adam Wainwright’s injury (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ wild 10-9 over the Cubs on Monday (link)
  • Preview for Tuesday’s game against the Cubs (link)

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May 4: Cubs @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (18-6, +4.5 in NL Central), Cubs (13-10, -4.5 in NL Central)

First pitch: 7:10 pm CT

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

Cardinals lineup: Jon Jay (CF), Matt Carpenter (3B), Matt Holliday (LF), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Mark Reynolds (1B), Jason Heyward (RF), Kolten Wong (2B), Tony Cruz (C), Carlos Martinez (RHP)

Cubs lineup: Dexter Fowler (CF), Chris Coghlan (LF), Anthony Rizzo (1B), Kris Bryant (3B), Miguel Montero (C), Starlin Castro (SS), Chris Denorfia (RF), Travis Wood (LHP), Addison Russell (2B)

Transactions: None

Reading material:

  • Three games, three extra-inning walk-off wins by the Cardinals (link)
  • A look at the dominance of the Cardinals’ pitching staff during a sweep of the Pirates (link)
  • Reliever Jordan Walden lands on DL, Sam Tuivailala recalled from Triple-A (link)
  • Tyler Lyons announced as Tuesday’s starter (link)
  • Game recap from Sunday’s 3-2 win over the Pirates (link)
  • Preview for Monday’s series opener against Chicago (link)

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April 30: Phillies @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (14-6, +2.0 in NL Central), Phillies (8-14, -7.0 in NL East)

First pitch: 12:45 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, MLB Network, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Jon Jay (CF), Matt Carpenter (3B), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Jason Heyward (RF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Pete Kozma (SS), Tim Cooney (LHP)

Phillies lineup: Odubel Herrera (CF), Freddy Galvis (SS), Darin Ruf (LF), Ryan Howard (1B), Jeff Francoeur (RF), Cesar Hernandez (2B), Cody Asche (3B), Cameron Rupp (C), David Buchanan (RHP)

Transactions: The Cardinals have optioned catcher Cody Stanley to Triple-A and purchased the contract of left-handed pitcher Tim Cooney

Reading material:

  • Given a rare start, Peter Bourjos has his footprints all over the Cardinals’ win (link)
  • Kolten Wong sets a career-high with 10 assists, three coming with the aid of the shift (link)
  • Tim Cooney grew up a huge Phillies fan, now he’ll face them in his Major League debut (link)
  • Major League Baseball releases its All-Star Game ballot, opens fan voting (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ 5-2 win over the Phillies (link)
  • Preview for Thursday’s series finale against Philadelphia (link)

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April 29: Phillies @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (13-6, +1.0 in NL Central), Phillies (8-13, -7.0 in NL East)

First pitch: 7:15 pm CT

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

Cardinals lineup: Peter Bourjos (CF), Matt Carpenter (3B), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Jason Heyward (RF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Carlos Martinez (RHP)

Phillies lineup: Ben Revere (LF), Odubel Herrera (CF), Chase Utley (2B), Jeff Francouer (RF), Ryan Howard (1B), Cody Asche (3B), Carlos Ruiz (C), Freddy Galvis (SS), Aaron Harang (RHP)

Transactions: None

Reading material:

  • Adam Wainwright discusses how he’ll keep busy in 2015 and try to make an impact (link)
  • Cardinals’ offense sets season-high in runs scored and hits after lineup switcheroo (link)
  • Tim Cooney announced as Thursday’s new starter (link)
  • Wainwright not an advocate for introducing the DH into the NL (link)
  • Randal Grichuk provides an update on his ailing back (link)
  • Game story from the Cardinals’ 11-5 win over the Phillies (link)
  • Preview for Wednesday’s game against the Phillies (link)

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April 28: Phillies @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (12-6, +1.0 in NL Central), Phillies (8-12, -7.0 in NL East)

First pitch: 7:15 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Jon Jay (CF), Matt Carpenter (3B), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Jason Heyward (RF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Michael Wacha (RHP)

Phillies lineup: Ben Revere (CF), Odubel Herrera (CF), Chase Utley (2B), Jeff Francoeur (RF), Ryan Howard (1B), Cody Asche (3B), Carlos Ruiz (C), Freddy Galvis (SS), Severino Gonzalez (RHP)

Transactions: None

Afternoon news: Manager Mike Matheny announced that LHP Tim Cooney will start against the Phillies on Thursday

Reading material:

  • MRI confirms a season-ending diagnosis for Adam Wainwright. (link)
  • With Wainwright done for the year, how will the Cardinals plug the rotation in the short- and long-term? (link)
  • Yadier Molina returns to the lineup after missing time with tight right knee (link)
  • Teammates poke fun at Mark Reynolds’s face-plant into the wall with a little crime scene tape (link)
  • How the bunt — one executed, one botched — loomed large in Monday’s outcome (link)
  • Matt Adams is still looking for his first hit off a left-handed pitcher this year (link)
  • Game story from the Cardinals’ 4-1 loss to the Phillies (link)
  • Preview for Tuesday’s game against the Phillies (link)

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April 27: Phillies @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (12-5), Philadelphia (7-12)

First pitch: 7:15 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Mark Reynolds (RF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Jon Jay (CF), John Lackey (RHP)

Phillies lineup: Ben Revere (LF), Odubel Herrera (CF), Chase Utley (2B), Jeff Francoeur (RF), Ryan Howard (1B), Cody Asche (3B), Carlos Ruiz (C), Freddy Galvis (SS), Cole Hamels (LHP)

Transactions: None

Reading Material:

  • Adam Wainwright is out for the year with a torn left Achilles (link)
  • Jason Heyward becomes the latest player to exit with a midgame injury, but a minor one (link)
  • Cardinals’ loss on Sunday marred by so many missed chances (link)
  • Cody Stanley collects a hit in his first Major League at-bat (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ 6-3 loss to the Brewers (link)
  • Preview for Monday’s game against the Phillies (link)

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Wainwright injury: Reaction from around the NL Central

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

A day after Adam Wainwright suffered a left Achilles injury, the baseball world began to react to the growing expectation that an MRI scheduled for Monday will confirm that Wainwright is going to miss the rest of the 2015 season.

There were tweets from those who have had Achillies injuries before…

… and also from some of the other elite pitchers in the game.

Without question, the complexion of the National League Central race changes with Wainwright not a part of it. The Cardinals currently hold a three-game lead in the division as they’ve raced out to a 12-4 start.

Here was some of the reaction from the division teams trying to chase the Cardinals down.

  • Pirates manager Clint HurdIe: “It’s sad. I feel bad for Adam Wainwright. He’s as good a man as there is in the game. It was a little sickening when I got a text that informed me of what had happened. You love competition and this guy is fierce. I wish him a speedy recovery. You appreciate what he’s done in the game.”
  • Brewers manager Ron Roenicke: “The way he was moving around, it didn’t look good. Those things are a big blow to your team. You have to move beyond it. A couple of years ago we lost our 3-4-5 hitters for the year. That’s hard to recover from these type of things. They lose their No.1 pitcher, and it is tough to recover.”
  • Cubs reliever Jason Motte: “I know Waino, and he’ll be the biggest cheerleader they have out there. The good thing over there is if you get hurt, you don’t sit in the corner and cry about it. Guys are there and they’re cheering on the other guys. They’re the biggest cheerleaders. They’re there to get guys going. That’s what a lot of the guys do, whether they’re hurt or not. You’re out there cheering each other on — that’s how you keep guys going.”
  • Pirates starter Jeff Locke: “It’s too bad what happened to Adam. I’ve spent a little bit of time chatting with him. He came from Atlanta, like I did. A real stand-up guy, a class act.”
  • Cubs manager Joe Maddon: “That’s a tough break for St. Louis and I don’t wish poorly on anybody — I always want to beat everybody at their best. I’m certain they will figure it out. They have great resources and some nice spare parts that I’m not aware of. Sometimes that’s a rallying cry for a group. You have to be careful with that. It definitely hurts them but it has nothing to do with us,” Maddon said. “It’s just about us playing our game, winning our game, and respecting 90 feet on a daily basis and coming out ready to play and good things will happen.”
  • Pirates third baseman Josh Harrison: “You never want to see anyone get hurt. It stinks. It’s something they’ll have to deal with. Every team knows there will be injuries. One player is not going to affect a division. He is a marquee pitcher, but still is a factor only once every five days.”
  • Cubs starter Jake Arrieta: “That’s an unfortunate event to take place for those guys, especially the way it happened. An arm injury or something like that when he’s on the mound is one thing. The Achilles is such a freak kind of accident. … I know they’ve got some guys in Triple-A who can come in and fill that void. Not many guys can do what Wainwright does every five days but I think they’ll be all right. … Everyone makes that same movement and it’s one of those things that can happen at any moment, which is scary. It makes me cringe to think about that.”
  • Reds manager Bryan Price: “That’s losing a lot of innings, a lot of really good performance and leadership. I’m sure he will have a strong voice there. They lost him in 2011 and they won the World Series. It’s a big loss for them, certainly, from a performance standpoint and it stinks to see a player of his caliber and character potentially miss a season with an injury.”

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April 25: Cardinals @ Brewers

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (11-4, +2.5 in NL Central), Brewers (3-14, -9.0 in NL Central)

First pitch: 6:05 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Jason Heyward (RF), Matt Holliday (LF), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Mark Reynolds (1B), Kolten Wong (2B), Jon Jay (CF), Tony Cruz (C), Adam Wainwright (RHP)

Brewers lineup: Jean Segura (SS), Gerardo Parra (CF), Ryan Braun (RF), Adam Lind (1B), Khris Davis (LF), Aramis Ramirez (3B), Hector Gomez (2B), Martin Maldonado (C), Wily Peralta (RHP)

Transactions: None

Reading Material:

  • Yadier Molina day-to-day after taking a foul tip off his right knee (link)
  • Carlos Martinez maturing, dominating as a member of Cards rotation (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ 3-0 win over the Brewers on Friday (link)
  • For Kevin Siegrist, reduced fastball velocity is working just fine (link)
  • Cards option Dean Anna, stick with eight-man bullpen… for now (link)
  • Preview for Saturday’s game against the Brewers (link)

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April 24: Cardinals @ Brewers

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (10-4), Brewers (3-13)

First pitch: 7:10 pm CT

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

Cardinals lineup: Matt Carpenter (3B), Jason Heyward (RF), Matt Holliday (LF), Matt Adams (1B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Jon Jay (CF), Yadier Molina (C), Kolten Wong (2B), Carlos Martinez (RHP)

Brewers lineup: Jean Segura (SS), Gerardo Parra (CF), Ryan Bran (RF), Adam Lind (1B), Khris Davis (LF), Aramis Ramirez (3B), Elian Herrera (2B), Martin Maldonado (C), Matt Garza (RHP)

Transactions: The Cardinals optioned infielder Dean Anna to Triple-A and removed from outfielder Peter Bourjos from the paternity list

Reading material:

  • Michael Wacha has taken down a Cy Young runner-up (twice) and a Cy Young winner already this year. Here’s how (link)
  • Matt Adams tones for his poor defensive series with some big hits, including a game-winner (link)
  • Why Pete Kozma is still a household (and hated) name in DC (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ 4-1 win over the Nationals on Thursday (link)
  • Game preview for Friday’s series opener against the Brewers (link)

Follow me on Twitter (@LangoschMLB), Instagram (LangoschMLB) and Facebook (Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com)

Bourjos returns; Anna optioned to Triple-A

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Choosing to stick with an eight-man bullpen for at least a while longer, the Cardinals optioned infielder Dean Anna to Triple-A on Friday to create roster room for outfielder Peter Bourjos, who is returning from paternity leave.

Anna, who joined the team last weekend when Randal Grichuk went on the disabled list, made one pinch-hit appearance during his stay. His departure leaves the Cardinals with a four-man bench until further notice.

In sending down Anna, the Cardinals retain Mitch Harris as an extra arm in the bullpen. The club is just three days into a 20-day stretch in which it will play 20 games, and keeping an eighth reliever should alleviate some of the demands on the other relievers.

Bourjos was away from the team for three days while his wife, Ashley, gave birth to their first son, Maxton Christopher.

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