Cardinals Major League Notebook: 06/11/11

Tony La Russa's 5,000th game as a manager was one to forget as Milwaukee dominated the Cardinals Friday night at Miller Park.



Tony La Russa's 5,000th game as a big-league manager was memorable, but only for the number. His team's performance was forgettable.

A team that arrived at its hotel at nearly 4 a.m. after a long, early morning flight from Houston to Milwaukee mustered just one extra-base hit and no runs through eight innings off two-time Cardinal Chris Narveson. The Cardinals' starting pitcher, Kyle Lohse, had been sent ahead of the team to gain a good night's rest, but he wasn't much more effective than his offense as the Cardinals lost 8-0 Friday.

"The most perceptive thing I can say is the first game I was part of a winning club and that felt great," La Russa said afterward. "And, 5,000, you're part of a losing club and you feel like crap. The other 4,990 or whatever in between, you feel exactly the same.

"The old coaching adage is probably the best one of all. You never enjoy the wins like you suffer the losses. So, 2,000 (actually 2,320) losses is much worse than whatever the wins are. That's just the nature of coaching."

Lohse, who gave up four runs in five innings, allowed a two-run homer in the fifth to Milwaukee left fielder Ryan Braun and a triple to shortstop Craig Counsell that led to a two-run third. Counsell raised his career average against Lohse to .483.

"At this point," said Lohse, "I'm just happy to let him get the at-bat over earlier in the count. In the past, it's been six, seven eight pitches and it runs the pitch count up.

"I don't know what it is. Certain guys have more success against you than others. Now that I've been made more aware of it because people keep asking me about it. ... I usually don't pay too much attention to that stuff, but I do take notice when it seems every time gets up, he's on base."


RHP Ryan Franklin gave up a homer to Milwaukee RF Corey Hart in the sixth. It was the fifth home run the former closer has surrendered in 23 2/3 innings. But he fanned three in his second inning, and manager Tony La Russa said, "He's on his way back."

1B Albert Pujols, finding his rhythm, hit safely in his eighth straight game. He is 12-for-31 in that time with five homers and three doubles.

RHP Lance Lynn was on his way back to Class AAA Memphis one day after he had scored his first major league victory, and RHP Mitchell Boggs was recalled. Lynn was expendable because RHP Kyle McClellan (strained left hip) is set to come off the disabled list on Wednesday.

RHP Mitchell Boggs, who had three saves as the club's closer before being supplanted and then sent to Memphis to start, might not be here long. Manager Tony La Russa wants Boggs to get another start or two in Memphis so that he can be ready for that role in the majors, if needed. "He's really got exciting talent," said La Russa.

LF Matt Holliday, who has had a moderate quadriceps tear, has been running in St. Louis and will rejoin the team on Saturday. La Russa is hopeful Holliday will be able to come off the DL and play on Thursday in Washington.


BY THE NUMBERS: 2,676-2,320-4 - Tony La Russa's major league managing record.


QUOTE TO NOTE: "I want to underscore 'great.' He's been through a lot of things. … Wherever he is, he'll have his team competitive. That's the best thing you have to say about anybody."

- Baseball commissioner Bud Selig, praising La Russa for reaching 5,000 games managed.





OF Allen Craig (bruised right knee) was hurt June 7, and he didn't play June 8-10. He is day-to-day.

LF Matt Holliday (strained left quadriceps) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 1.

RHP Kyle McClellan (left hip flexor strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to May 31. He will throw a bullpen session during the weekend of June 10-12, and he is expected to be activated for a June 15 start against Washington.

C Gerald Laird (broken right index finger) went on the 15-day disabled list May 23. He will be out until July.

INF Nick Punto (right forearm flexor strain) went on the 15-day disabled list May 18.

3B David Freese (broken left hand) went on the 15-day disabled list May 2. He had surgery May 3, and he is expected to be out until mid- to late July.

RHP Bryan Augenstein (strained right groin) went on the 15-day disabled list April 13. He was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 16. He is on a rehab stint in the Florida State League

RHP Adam Wainwright (Tommy John surgery in February 2011) went on the 60-day disabled list March 25. He will miss the entire 2011 season.




Sat., June 11 at BREWERS: Chris Carpenter (1-5, 4.25) vs. Zack Greinke (5-1, 4.83) 6:10 p.m. CDT (FOX Sports Midwest, KMOX Radio and Cardinals Radio Network).

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