The Cardinals Spring Training Notebook 03/26

The Cardinals lost for the first time in six games Wednesday, as the Houston Astros beat the high flying Redbirds 4-3 in yesterday's Grapefruit League action. The Cardinals start the day with Adam Wainwright on the mound to face the Mets, tied with the Atlanta Braves in the National League standings with an impressive spring training record of 16-7-2.


Minor league outfielder Shane Robinson in the game as an extra player made a good impression as he drove in a couple of runs for the Cardinals. Khalil Greene had an RBI double as he continues to prove the Cardinals made the right decision acquiring him during the offseason.

Cardinals' starter Joel Pineiro pitched five complete innings, allowing two runs on six hits with five strikeouts and one walk. Kyle McClellan, who has struggled this spring, allowed a run on three hits in his first inning but settled in for a perfect second frame. Dennys Reyes allowed a hit but no runs in his Cardinals debut, while closer candidate Chris Perez gave up the winning run in the top of the ninth to take the loss in his first game back after missing time due to shoulder discomfort.


The Cardinals top prospect is currently hitting .290, after going 1-for-2 in Wednesday's game against division rivals, the Houston Astros. INSIDE THE NUMBERS

Rick Ankiel continues to be one of the hottest hitters in Grapefruit League action. The outfielder is hitting .364 with a team-high 24 hits and 35 total bases going into today's game.


The St. Louis Post Dispatch reported Wednesday that the Cardinals have placed lefthanded reliever Royce Ring on waivers for the purpose of removing him from their 40-man roster. If no other major league team claims Ring, he will have the option of accepting an outright assignment to Triple-A Memphis or becoming a free agent.

Following the game on Monday, the Cards re-assigned non-roster invitee pitcher P.J. Walters to minor league camp. Walters had pitched 3.0 shutout innings for St. Louis Monday and in his previous outing 3/13 vs. Baltimore. St. Louis re-assigned five players on Sunday and added non-roster invitee INF David Freese to Major League camp before Sunday's game. The club sits at 32 players remaining.


The Cardinals will be going for their 17th Grapefruit League victory today as they take on the New York Mets at Roger Dean Stadium. Game time set for 12:05 p.m. CDT. Adam Wainwright will take the mound for the Cardinals; he'll be facing the Mets' John Maine.

Cardinal's manager Tony La Russa will miss today's home game against the Mets because of a death in the family. He left camp at approximately game time on Wednesday to attend services for his mother-in-law. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.


With a win today, the Cardinals could tie their win total from last spring at 17. St. Louis has never won more than 17 spring games while playing in Jupiter (five times). The spring record in wins is 21 set in both 1956 and 1997.


Broadcasts coming up; March 29 game at Fort Myers (MIN) and April 3 tilt, exhibition game at Memphis.


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