8:10, FSNP, WPGB
Matt Morris (8-8, 4.41) vs. Joel Pineiro (4-3, 4.37). Pineiro has been surprisingly good, with a 3.71 ERA along with 21 strikeouts and just five walks, since the Cards acquired him from Boston for a PTBNL. He pitched badly out of the 'pen for the Sox, looking like pretty much the same guy who stunk up the joint in Seattle in 2006, and even landed in the Sox's minor league system in July. It turns out he was tipping his pitches, and Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan was able to pick up on that pretty much immediately. Nice job, Cards coaching staff. (Apparently, Kip Wells' problems aren't so easy to fix.)
Here's the box; Nyjer Morgan is in the lineup for the third straight day. Not that Morgan hasn't played well so far, or that Nate McLouth is any great shakes, but seriously, what does McLouth have to do to win a starting job over guys whose main professional accomplishments are looking like leadoff hitters? Morgan is an even more limited player than Duffy is. Wishing that one of your super-fast guys will turn into a leadoff hitter will not make the team better. McLouth is better than either of them, and the sooner the Bucs figure that out, the better.
-P- Xavier Nady is fine after being beaned by Andy Cavazos yesterday, but he probably won't be in the lineup tonight.
-P- Pedro Martinez, pitching in the bigs for the first time this season, recorded his 3,000th career strikeout yesterday.
-P- The Padres have acquired Brett Tomko. Basically, the Padres dumped David Wells and the Dodgers dumped Tomko to make room for him; now the Padres have acquired Tomko. The grass is always greener, I guess. Personally, I don't see much immediate hope for either of them.