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quoting from VEB back on february 8:

today on bernie's show [la russa] apparently hinted that juancion may bat second. tlr's like the rest of us during the off-season, bored and liable to say just about anything to pass the time; but i don't think he's just muttering idly on this one. don't forget, this is a manager who used to routinely fill the #2 slot with guys like craig paquette (.274 career obp) and shawon dunston (.296); so encarnacion's comparatively robust .316 obp may well prove irresistible to tony.
and so it has, apparently. read and weep at the official site:
Encarnacion has hit second on consecutive days, and there's a good chance that's where he'll be on Opening Day in Philadelphia. . . . .
"I like damage in the second spot if possible," La Russa said. "And he has a lot of things. He's got good legs, he's got extra-base pop, and he's got enough experience to understand the value of 3-4-5 behind him."
that gibes with derrick goold's chat post yesterday to the effect that encarnacion will be getting "a test drive" in the #2 hole, as that's where TLR would prefer him.

i am reminded of wise words from danup's mom last summer: just go with it. i mean really, why get outraged? why bother? it's an ill-advised lineup decision, and it'll cost the team runs -- so who cares? JGWI, baby.

and who on the roster is better suited, anyway? well, there's edmonds -- matt leach's latest blog post gently makes the case for batting edmonds 2d, an idea i support; but leach acknowledges that it'll never happen that way. and if tony's not going to hit edmonds 2d, the remaining candidates on the roster are all equally bad. it might as well be juan'cion as somebody else.

a guy with a career .316 obp is our best option to hit 2d; that, in a nutshell, is why so many cardinal fans were so dissatisfied with this winter's roster rebuild.

whatever. just go with it.

bullpen shakeout: jeff nelson's gone, and brian falkenborg allowed three runs in his one-inning stint yesterday; in this duel of scoreless appearances, that could cost him an opening-day roster spot. if it does, that would leave hancock, wainwright, and benes fighting for the last two slots. i think hancock and wainwright deserve them, but la russa's such a softie he may not be able to resist giving al benes one last chance to make good. should that happen, it'll probably be at wainwright's expense; he'll get sent down to memphis to get some work in as a reliever.

so there's a chance that both wainwright and reyes will open the season at triple a to patch the holes in their game, while the pitching coach's son opens it as the starting left fielder -- a position he never played before this spring.

sigh. it's still a probable playoff team. with some depth to trade from.

just go with it.