Sunday Summary: Bullpen Struggles as Ryan Ludwick, Troy Glaus Add Pop
Troy Glaus: He finally showed why the Cardinals made him their third baseman this winter. Glaus raised his average 40 points this week to .270 and also hit his second homer to go with seven RBIs.
Ryan Ludwick: He has talent. Once a highly-touted prospect, Ludwick mashed three more home runs this week, including a walk-off on Saturday.
Ludwick has better numbers than other players being mentioned for All-Star consideration like Carlos Quentin, Pat Burrell, and others, so why not him if he continues this production?
Chris Perez: Not even two weeks ago, I wrote an article asking for Chris Perez’s promotion, citing good talent and a better track record as my reasons. When Izzy went on the DL this week, the Redbirds brought Perez up and he pitched two scoreless innings this weekend on the way to his first win.
Just the seventh member of the 2006 draft class to hit the bigs, Perez’s fastball reached 98, and he showed poise in the ninth inning of a close game on Sunday. I’m trying to stay calm.
Adam Wainwright: In his last two starts, Wainwright has given up 12 runs, 10 earned, in 11.2 innings. On Saturday, he labored despite being staked to a lead and getting help defensively from Yadi Molina. He’s got to get it together for the Cards.
Ron Villone: As good as he had been prior to this week, Villone was God-awful this week. In two appearances, he was blasted for seven ER in 2.2 IP. Ron Flores is pitching very well at Triple-A Memphis, so Villone might be on a short leash as the Cards' lefty specialist.
Brian Barton: Everybody’s favorite dred-wearing speedster has only one hit since May 7, and his average has dipped to .262. Joe Mather is hitting well in Memphis, so even if Rick Ankiel stays off the DL, Mather might get a crack if Barton continues to struggle.
Rick Ankiel: He’s hit well and made a tremendous play in the middle of the week to take back a home run, but he also tweaked his shoulder on Friday against the Rays. Ankiel’s body isn't ready to play outfield every day yet, so it will be interesting to see how he returns.
WATCH OUT FOR...
The Cards play three in San Diego early this week before an off day and a three-game set on the road against the Dodgers. This week could be good for the Birds, as neither is a great hitting team. Also, the off day will help freshen the club.
Jason Isringhausen looks to be done for quite some time. How will Chris Perez do in his first stint in the MLB? Ryan Franklin has been good thus far. Can he continue that trend? The bullpen has been pretty terrible lately, so veteran role players like Franklin, McClellan and Flores must step up.
Lastly, Rick Ankiel might go on the DL with a shoulder strain. Word on Sunday was that he’ll remain active and might be ready to go by mid-week, but Joe Mather could soon get a call-up regardless. He hit a homer in four straight games during this week and could provide some protection in the St. Louis lineup if Schumaker and Barton continue their recent struggles.
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