What a relief! The St. Louis Cardinals bullpen had a good game Friday night!
Okay, sorry for that first-sentence cheesiness.
But after the drama of Thursday night resulted in (more) necessary changes for the second time this week, new kids Carlos Martinez and Seth Maness had their chances to make an impact against the Milwaukee Brewers — and both shone in their debuts.
Combined with rookie Shelby Miller providing another great start and Fernando Salas finishing it off with a perfect ninth, the game was a nice look at the Cardinals pitching future.
And it’s a bright one. How can you not be excited?
Yet of course it takes more than just good pitching to win a game — and that’s where the Cardinals veterans made their mark Friday night in the 6-1 win.
In the case of Matt Holliday, it was literal. His third-inning two-run homer hit the Miller Park scoreboard — which you can see (and hear) for yourself. Jon Jay drove in two runs with a double in fifth, while Carlos Beltran hit a solo homer in the seventh and Holliday added the final run on a passed ball that inning too.
But, really, the night was all about the Cardinals pitching. And since I was gone and had to DVR the game, I asked for one tweet summaries of it — which not coincidentally also all focused on the pitching.
Yes, “young guns” is definitely a more-than-accurate way to describe them. Yet word this morning from Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tells us that there just might be a veteran joining them later this summer — Chris Carpenter.
The 2005 NL Cy Young Award winner recently resumed a throwing program at Busch Stadium less than three months after weakness, pain and discoloration in his right side forced him to wave off spring training.
This is no stunt or pat on the head to a veteran unwilling to concede the obvious. Both parties believe Carpenter can potentially address the gash to the bullpen’s starboard side.
“I’m candidly optimistic and excited about him contributing,” Mozeliak says.
“I want to do what I can to help,” Carpenter said Thursday at Scottrade Center, where the former high school defenseman watched the Blues’ playoff win against the Los Angeles Kings.
“We really haven’t focused on a timetable or anything,” Mozeliak says. “We’re merely letting him go out and see what he can do. If he clears one hurdle, he proceeds to the next.”
Interesting, to say the least, and far too early to get overly excited given all of the obvious past medical setbacks. But even the idea of Chris Carpenter returning is a day brightener. The man deserves to go out on his own terms.
The Cardinals are back in action this afternoon on the FOX Game of the Week, with Adam Wainwright and Yovani Gallardo as the starters. Today also is the annual United Cardinal Bloggers progressive game blog and we’ll be leading off the game coverage in discussing the first inning. here’s hoping there’s a lot of Cards offense to describe, and a three-up and three-down bottom of the inning …
Check back later for more!
Christine Coleman is the lead St. Louis Cardinals reporter for Aaron Miles’ Fastball. Follow her on Twitter, @CColeman802, or email email@example.com. Also follow @AMilesFastball for the latest updates.