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RHATER is Gone.
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I'll just get it off my back first, the Cardinals were blown out last night, 8-2.  Shawn Chacon pretty much shut down the offense, giving up only two solo shots by Pujols and Barton, but never let the Cardinals get anything going. Braden Looper had a horrible start, giving up 8 runs, 7 earned. Looper has been saying starting is what he likes to do all season long, and I don't think he wants to go back to the bullpen when Carpenter and (very unlikely) Mulder come back. But he hasn't been pitching so well in recent starts. If he wants to stay a starter, he better start shaping up.

WHAT THE HELL WAS TONY LA RUSSA THINKING LAST NIGHT? Why wasn't Ryan Ludwick on the starting lineup??? He is clearly an everyday starter. He leads the team in HRs and RBIs, and is a better LF than Duncan BY FAR! Not putting Ludwick in is pretty much admitting defeat. I thought Tony was a guy that loved playing matchups. Well, do you know what Duncan's history vs. Chacon was? 1 for 18!!!! Yes, that's a .055 BA! Ludwick? 0 for 1. I'd defintely take Ludwick if I wanted the best chance to win. I'd be a little OK with it if it was on a Sunday game, but on the first day of a 7 game home stretch? That's a great way to start the series, Tony!

There were a couple bright spots last night. Pujols and Barton both homered, but even if they both were grand slams, it would've only tied it. Pujols went 4 for 4, w/ a homer, a double, and two singles. Too bad no one behind him could get anything going. After the #6 spot in the batting lineup (Glaus), however, was 2 for 14. If the bottom of the lineup doesn't produce, what's the point of batting the pitcher 8th?

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