The Redbird Report 08/13

St. Louis Cardinals' starter Anthony Reyes knocked off six innings of two-run ball Sunday in improving his record to 2-11. In his last four starts, he has allowed 10 earned runs in 29 innings for a 3.10 ERA.

Right-hander Anthony Reyes won't make it to .500 this year unless the season goes deep into November, but, for the first time in his two years in the St. Louis rotation, he is pitching with some consistency.

Asked to identify the improvement in his game, Reyes, twice sent to the minors this year, said, "I think there was too much thinking, worrying about what pitch I was going to throw guys. Now I'm not worried if this (pitch) is the right pitch."

Sunday's game marked the eighth consecutive time a Cardinals starter had gone at least six innings, a far cry from the first 100-plus games.

"The rotation has settled in where guys are comfortable they're going to be starting every five days," pitching coach Dave Duncan said. "Each guy in that rotation has gone through some sort of a transition.

"We'll see. We've still got a lot of games to play. It would be nice if the rotation could be more consistent from now till the end."

CARDINALS 10, DODGERS 2: Two players who started the season at Class AAA Memphis and another who has spent a month there this year combined to give the Cardinals their second consecutive series triumph. Left fielder Ryan Ludwick bashed his 10th homer and drove in four runs. Sunday call-up Brendan Ryan, playing third base, homered, doubled and drove in three runs, and right-hander Anthony Reyes walked just one and gave up two runs in six innings.

NOTES AND QUOTES

--2B Adam Kennedy was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a torn medial meniscus in his right knee, and he will require surgery that will keep him out four to six weeks. Kennedy is hitting just .219.

--INF Brendan Ryan was recalled from Class AAA Memphis. Ryan, hitting .343 in the majors, homered and doubled and drove in three runs Sunday.

--1B Albert Pujols and SS David Eckstein were the only players from the Cardinals' opening-day lineup who started Sunday.

--Manager Tony La Russa is just nine wins shy of Red Schoendienst's Cardinal-best total of 1,041 victories.

--RF Juan Encarnacion, who hasn't got off the bench in the last four games as Rick Ankiel has played, was scratched from a lineup he was in Sunday. Manager Tony La Russa said that Encarnacion was having some trouble with his knees. Encarnacion, saying he really hadn't had any explanation for his continued absence, said that his feelings hurt more than his knees.

--2B Aaron Miles had four hits and is batting .410 (41-for-100) at Busch Stadium since May 22.

--OF Rick Ankiel homered twice Saturday, giving him three homers in his first three games as a major league outfielder.

BY THE NUMBERS: 7 -- Number of years between big-league homers for OF Rick Ankiel.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I'm happy to be home." -- OF Rick Ankiel, back in the big leagues for the first time in three years, but this time not as a pitcher.


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