St. Louis starter Kyle Lohse retired the side in order in the first inning before stumbling in the second frame, giving up two-run homers to Justin Christian and Nolan Reimold. Lohse making his first start for St. Louis since signing a four-year-deal for $41 million, hasn't been sharp in early bullpen sessions this spring and he wasn't very impressive Thursday in his two innings on the mound.
Rookie lefthander Brad Furnish walked four hitters, besides allowing a home run, in one inning of relief work. Veteran Joe Ostlund did fare much better, giving up three runs on three hits and two walks in his only inning on the mound. Ostlund is in camp competing for one of what are likely two spots in the Cardinals bullpen for lefthanders. I currently have Ostlund at #4 maybe even #5 on my lefty bullpen personnel depth chart.
The battle for the closer's role got a little more interesting Thursday with front runner Chris Perez who has been struggling with ankle bone spurs this spring, pitching a solid one shutout inning in relief. Perez mixed a slider and a curve with his fastball effectively as he seeks to stake his claim as the team's closer.
Offensively, not much to write home about, the team had only six hits, two of them for extra bases, a home run by Joe Thurston and a two-run double by Yadier Molina to lead the Redbirds feeble offense.
NOTES AND QUOTES
With injuries sidelining pitchers; Clayton Mortensen, Mitchell Boggs and Matt Scherer, the Cardinals called out the Calvary Thursday, adding two more pitchers to big league camp in the persons of Mark McCormick and Trey Hearne.
Third baseman Troy Glaus who will likely miss the first month of the season took some ground balls for the first time this spring as he begins what will seem like a long road back to the lineup. The concern about Glaus and the surgery to repair a muscle that runs from his chest to his right shoulder is, will Glaus' power stroke return?
Infielder Brendan Ryan expects to receive a cortisone shot for his wrist Sunday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. Ryan has tendinitis in the wrist that bothers him when he swings the bat. Hopefully the shot will keep the inflammation down. He did not play in either of the first two spring training games. He's still hopeful he can win the second base job or the utility infielder role, but he's probably falling behind Skip Schumaker and even Joe Thurston at this point.
The Cardinals will take on the Mets today. To put things in a little perspective, the Mets pounded out 15 hits to defeat the Orioles on Wednesday 9-3.
According to one release I have, Todd Wellemeyer, Adam Ottavino, Jason Motte, Josh Kinney and Trever Miller were supposed to take the mound Friday against the Mets. That may change before game time, because I heard Joel Pineiro may take the mound.
According to the St. Louis Cardinals official website and previously published reports the Cardinals game today will be broadcasted on MLB TV and the MLBN, game time at 12:05 PM.
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