Sunday Morning Coffee with Ray Mileur

The Cardinals are going for the four-game sweep over the San Diego Padres today with rookie Jaime Garcia making his major league debut as a starter. Plus, my non-politically correct take on the All-Star game from the Ray Mileur, Redneck Redbird Report.

From a radio interview earlier in the week - it's Ray Mileur's Redneck Redbird Report.

Q – What do you think of the All-Star game and the winner having home field advantage?

RM – Well it's just another dumb decision, by perhaps the worst commissioner in the history of the game.

Someone tell me, how is the game supposed to count when the manager is suppose to use ALL of his players. This isn't t-ball it's major league baseball.

If I'm the manager of one of the teams in the All-Star game, and I still have a chance to play in the World Series. I'm going with my best starting lineup and my one, maybe two best pitchers and a closer, and unless there is an injury or someone kicked out of the game, the rest of the team can kick back and watch the game, because other than an injury, I'm playing the game, like it's game seven of the World Series.

The bottom line is the team with the best regular season record should have home field advantage. I'm sorry, if you make it to the postseason as a wild-card team, you are just out of luck; you're NEVER going to have home field advantage.

If I hear one more time, "If we can just make it there, we'll see what's going to happen" , I'm going to scream. I'm sorry getting to the postseason as a wild card team, is like taking your cousin to the prom and giving them home field advantage, to me is like raking your finger nails across the chalkboard. (Kids your parents or grandparents can tell you what a chalkboard is)

The All-Star game always meant something long before men who don't have a clue, added the home field advantage to the outcome of the game. Ask Pete Rose or Ray Fosse if the game meant something. Ask Bob Gibson if the game meant something. A real ballplayer doesn't need any more incentive than his personal and professional pride.

Home field advantage for winning the All-Star, an exhibition game, please. It is and will always be an exhibition game, you simple-minded ...sorry, I almost said something politically correct, I'm assuming it would take a simple-minded person to make such a stupid decision as to give the World Series home field advantage to the league that wins an exhibition game. For emphasis, an EXHIBITION GAME.

Back to the Cardinals, yesterday, Albert Pujols went 3-for-4 with four runs driven in to lead the St. Louis Cardinals in a 6-5 win over the San Diego Padres in the third installment of a four-game set.

Rick Ankiel and Skip Schumaker were responsible for an RBI apiece for the Cardinals, which have won four straight games and will go for a four-game sweep over the Padres today.

Todd Wellemeyer (8-4) got the win as he went 6 1/3 innings and was touched for five runs on five hits. Ryan Franklin tossed two innings of scoreless relief to notch his 14th save.

The Cardinals will play their 100th game of the season today and are currently on a pace to finish the season with 89 wins. After 99 games last season, the Cards were 46-53. Their best recent record after 100 games was in 2004 when the Cards were 64-36 and on their way to the World Series.

Left-hander Jaime Garcia makes his first career start in his second MLB appearance today as the Cardinals try to complete a four-game sweep of the San Diego Padres. Garcia tossed 2.0 scoreless innings on 7/11 at PIT, allowing one hit.

Garcia was recalled from Triple-A Memphis on 7/10 (Mark Mulder DL) after he began the season at Double-A Springfield before a May promotion to Memphis. Garcia was 3-2 with a 2.06 ERA in six starts at Double-A and went 4-4 with a 4.59 ERA in 12 starts with Memphis before getting the call to St. Louis.

Jaime was selected to the Futures Game this year prior to recall. He represented the Cards at Futures Game last year as well, but did not appear.

The "Wizard of Oz" Ozzie Smith will be honored in pre-game ceremonies tomorrow on his election to the All-Time Rawlings Gold Glove Team. The team was announced last summer, in conjunction with the award's 50th anniversary. Smith will receive a special Rawlings Gold Glove Award. Smith, a thirteen time Gold Glove winner, won eleven as a Cardinal and two while with the Padres.

PRGRAMMING NOTES - Please note that this Monday's game against the Brewers will be a 6:05 start due to ESPN picking up the game telecast. Also, the August 3rd game versus Philadelphia has been selected as the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball telecast, which will move the start time from 1:15 to 7:05.

NOTES & QUOTES – Chris Carpenter makes his first rehab start at Double-A Springfield tonight. Carpenter is what is expected to be four or five rehab starts before returning being activated off the DL.

Mark Mulder after being examined by another Doctor in Delaware is expected to stop pitching or even throwing and take at least two weeks off to rest his sore shoulder. Bottom line, he's basically done, at least for this season, if not for his career.

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