Hats Off, TLR. Brilliant Strategery.

Score one for Tony La Russa.

As so aptly put by 2xAught7 in his tweet, it was brilliant strategery by TLR to have Miguel Batista start the game last night, with bad weather imminent in downtown St. Louis. And reading this quote from Dusty Baker backs that up all the more: “The information we received was probably not the same information they received.”

Well, Dusty, there’s this thing called the Internet, and you can look up this thing called the radar, and it shows you what weather is approaching …

In contrast, look at this — praise for TLR’s move from Brandon Phillips?

“I’m going to give the Cardinals two thumbs up for what they did,” the Reds’ Brandon Phillips said. “They changed their pitcher on us at the last minute, that was a very smart thing to do.

“The next thing you know they brought in their starter who was going to start the game, and he was fresh.”

The Reds didn’t do that, of course. Edinson Volquez warmed up before the game began at 7:15 p.m. and was thus unavailable after the two-plus hour rain/storm delay. Even though he never set foot on the field, he’s listed in the box score as the Reds starter. Just like The Poet is listed as the Cardinals starter.

Yes, it was a highly memorable start — as Batista said himself, “How do you take me out? I still had a no-no.” (See, he’s funny too.) And, in honor of his appearance, another poem.

Poem for The Poet — April 22

Surprise start
Weather played a part
The sky was already scary.

Only six pitches
To the real whiny bitches
Before the rains came down.

The start went very fast
Too bad it didn’t last
You really were on a roll.

No attention for you
Like the last time you threw
From the starting pitcher’s mound.

But that was okay
You had a short day
Now you’re on a first-place team.

As Brandon Phillips mentioned above, Kyle McClellan did start for the Cardinals once the game resumed at 9:30 p.m., then proceeded to pitch six innings. And though he was in and out of jams, he pitched well enough and earned the victory. Eduardo Sanchez came into the game with two on and none out, and only gave up one run (charged to McClellan). Sanchez wasn’t as effective as he has been either, especially with two wild pitches, but he too pitched well enough. Plus it was good to see him come into a tight situation and work his way out of it.

Offensively, the Cards played small ball to score their four runs — the only extra-base hits were doubles by Ryan Theriot and Lance Berkman and they each scored two of the Cards runs. Albert drove in Theriot in the first and second innings, LB scored after Jay Bruce tried to throw a ball before he had it and then on a single by Yadi.

So the Cardinals take a 1-0 lead in the series. Today’s game is on Fox, tomorrow’s on ESPN. Hopefully Chris Carpenter can finally pick up his first win of the season today. (His birthday is in a few days — it would be a nice present.) Game time in just a few hours.

Christine Coleman is the senior St. Louis Cardinals reporter for Aaron Miles’ Fastball. Follow her on Twitter, @CColeman802, or email aaronmilesfastball@gmail.com. Also follow @AMilesFastball for the latest updates.

4 thoughts on “Hats Off, TLR. Brilliant Strategery.

  1. Congratulations from your fan friends at the bottom of the division. I’m a little scared for the Cards visit to H-town next week!

    • Nervous about that trip myself! You never know what will happen when the Stros and Cards play!
      Plus, I disliked this team for years because LB was on it and he was a Card killer. Now… Now, I don’t know what to think!

      • If Bud Norris is pitching, I am definitely nervous. Although maybe LB will be able to overcome Norris’ power over the Cards!

  2. Yup, TLR is good at that strategery! Dubya Bush would be proud!
    It was nice to see the Reds go from first to third. It’s quietened some folks. But then again, all the Cards do is complain… that’s the Reds thing… complain about the Cards complaining. It’s cute isn’t it!
    AND AND…. who knew B.J. Rains was such a Reds fan!! LOL Or about that man crush he has on BP.
    Speaking of BP… like I said last night or this morning… after all of Ricky and Al’s talk, I just don’t care about that anymore! I DON’T CARE!

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