Friday, August 18, 2006

Cards in Chicago

The St. Louis Cardinals make a return to Chicago this weekend to extend their 2.5 NL Central lead.

Preston Wilson takes the start in right field as the Cardinals just signed him today.
Outfielder Preston Wilson, released by the Houston Astros earlier this week, signed with the Cardinals today.

To make room for Wilson on the 25-man roster, the Cards optioned starting pitcher Anthony Reyes to Triple-A Memphis.

Wilson batted .269 with nine home runs and 55 RBIs with the Astros, but disappointed them with a lack of power. The Cardinals hope to improve their lineup against lefthanded pitching.

"This was a pretty nice opportunity for us," assistant general manager John Mozeliak said. "He gives us some stability, too, because he can play all three outfield positions."

St. Louis was 17-28 against lefthanders entering Friday's game at Chicago. Wilson, who joined the team in time for the game, was batting .312 against lefthanders.

The team also has concerns about center fielder Jim Edmonds, who missed the last two games because of post-concussion syndrome. Edmonds had been optimistic about playing Friday, but there was no word about the day's lineup.[...]

The Cardinals have been weak in the outfield most of the year before the emergence of rookie Chris Duncan in the last month. The team plans on Wilson platooning in left field with the lefthanded hitting Duncan, who's batting .338 overall but .222 against lefties in 27 at-bats.

Wilson was batting .301 with runners in scoring position and got his 1,000th career hit earlier this season against the Cardinals in Houston. An NL All-Star in 2003, he led the league with 141 RBIs that season for the Rockies.
I'm not a fan of platooning Chris Duncan with anyone unless it's for a day that he gets off to relax. Duncan is my sleeper pick for the National League Rookie of the Year. In fact, he just hit another home run today. As to Anthony Reyes, I'm hoping he can get his control back with Memphis and join the rotation again. Speaking of Memphis, Mark Mulder's recent rehab start was less than impressive.

Also, keep praying for Jim Edmonds.

Right now, the Cards and Cubs are tied 1-1 in the first inning. Jason Marquis started against Carlos Marmol.

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