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Game 55 Open Thread: June 3, 2006

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mulder rusch
5-3, 4.52 1-5, 7.05

Update [2006-6-3 16:52:8 by lboros]: if you're just tuning in: albert struck out swinging in the bottom of the 1st, then pulled up short chasing a foul ball in the top of 2d, clutching his right side . . . . . left the game at inning's end. luna's playing 1st.

about last night's game, only this: who would have pitched if the cards had tied the game up in the bottom of the 14th? gary bennett came out to pinch-hit for la russa's last pitcher, josh hancock, with two out and a man on 1st; he obligingly struck out to end the game, but suppose he'd gotten on base somehow and miles eventually came around to score? i guess bennett himself would have taken the mound; he'd have had to stay in the game one way or the other, because he was tony's last position player on the bench; there was nobody else to sub in, save edmonds (who obviously wasn't going to play).

i did a quick check at baseball reference.com; bennett has never pitched. neither have any of the cardinals' other position players. la russa hates using position players on the mound anyway; you don't suppose he sent bennett up there with instructions to get himself out, do you?

last year mark mulder had that weird day/night split; so far this year the rift is home/road. he's 4-0 at busch 3 with a 2.72 era; batters are hitting just .243 off him there, and he's fanning 5.4 per 9. in away games mark is 1-3 with a 7.22 era; he's getting tagged for a .308 opp avg and fanning only 3.77 per 9. it's probably just one of those things, a meaningless split that won't hold up over the course of the year; if it were to persist, i might theorize that something about the hitter's background at new busch plays into mark's hands, makes it hard for batters to pick up the ball. the awful road numbers, by the way, aren't solely the result of mark's meltdown in san diego last weekend; he came into that game with a road era of 5.54.

1/3 of the way through the season, the cardinals are on pace to post a 102-60 record.