4.34, 4-2 5.44, 10-9
The Cardinals are facing a radically different Reds organization. Gone are Adam Dunn (traded to Arizona) and Ken Griffey Jr. (traded to Chicago) from the outfield. While the loss of Dunn's bat is certainly a blow to the offense, the defensive improvements that are almost sure to replace Dunn and Griffey will help the pitchers a great deal. Over the course of the season, those two were probably 30 runs worse than average as corner outfielders defensively.
Bronso Arroyo has said that Dunn made it well known that he'll be looking for a $100M dollar contract this coming offseason. Baseball Prospectus makes it look like he's about a 4 win offensive player (per VORP) but given his egregious defense, I'm not sure he's worth what he's asking for. That's not to say he isn't a great impact hitter but just glancing at the numbers, I don't think I'd pay him more than 12M a year and I wouldn't put him anywhere other 1B or DH. Feel free to persuade me he's worth more or less. . .
Arroyo's had an off year as his FIP deteriorates further from it's high water mark in 2004 as a starter. It's now at 4.68 and makes the 25M/2 year extension for 2009-2010 look pretty ugly. They will basically be paying twice what we paid Pineiro for slightly worse performance. Brad Thompson gets the start for the Cards with Carpenter's health still in question. I've come around on Brad Thompson a bit over the last few months as a long reliever. He's a far better option than Kelvin Jimenez when you need to absorb some innings as the Cardinals have had to far too often this season. Hopefully, the sinker is on tonight since he's going to be throwing that around 2/3 of the time (a higher fastball percentage than even Todd Wellemeyer).
Preprogrammed overflow @ 7:30pm.