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Tag:Kyle Lohse
Posted on: June 11, 2011 1:26 am
 

3 Up, 3 Down: Sizemore helps stop A's skid

Scott Sizemore

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Scott Sizemore, Athletics -- Sizemore's two-out, three-run double in the ninth gave the A's a 7-5 victory over the White Sox on Friday. With the hit, the A's snapped their 10-game losing streak and gave Bob Melvin his first victory at the helm in Oakland. Sizemore was 3 for 4 on the night and is 5 for 9 since joining the A's.

Dillon Gee, Mets -- Gee became the first rookie to start a season 7-0 since Jered Weaver won nine in a row in 2006. It's the fourth-best streak to start a season in Mets history. Gee gave up a run in the first, but nothing else as he went eight innings in the 8-1 Mets victory. Gee allowed eight hits, all singles, while striking out five and walking none.

Ichiro's replacements --  Carlos Peguero started in right field for the slumping Ichiro Suzuki, while Chone Figgins was leading off instead of Suzuki. Both notched a pair of hits, with Peguero hitting a homer and a triple, scoring twice. Figgins, who entered the game hitting .187, recorded a single and a double in the Mariners' 3-2 victory over the Tigers.


Charlie Morton, Pirates -- Morton looked more like the 2010 Charlie Morton than the 2011 version on Friday, allowing seven runs -- six earned -- and nine hits in just four-plus innings. His ERA rose more than a half-run, from 2.52 to 3.08, dropping the Pirates to two games under .500 on the season. 

Carlos Zambrano, Cubs -- Carlos Marmol didn't have a chance to blow a lead as Zambrano put the Cubs in a seven-run hole in Philadelphia, exiting following Placido Polanco's seventh-inning grand slam. Zambrano, of course, criticized his teammates and closer following a blown save in St. Louis on Sunday.

Kyle Lohse, Cardinals -- Lohse gave up four runs on five hits in five innings in the Cardinals' 8-0 loss to the Brewers. He hasn't won at Miller Park since June 26, 2005, when he was a member of the Minnesota Twins and hasn't beaten the Brewers since July 25, 2007, as a member of the Reds.

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Posted on: May 13, 2011 6:24 pm
Edited on: May 13, 2011 7:14 pm
 

On Deck: Red Sox-Yankees battle


OD

By Evan Brunell

BEST MATCHUP: The first Red Sox-Yankees game in quite a while gets top billing, and it's a pretty decent matchup, too. Clay Buchholz, who has struggled against the Yankees in the past, will take the mound with a 4.19 ERA. Buchholz has struggled to retain the dominance that saw him post a sub-3.00 ERA last season, but he was pitching over his head anyways. He's fallen back to earth and needs to back off his reliance of pitching to contact to take a step forward. Meanwhile, ex-Red Sox pitcher Bartolo Colon, who left the team on a sour note when he refused to go to the bullpen in 2008, takes the mound with a rejuvenated right arm that had stem cells injected into it. Colon has an impressive 3.86 ERA after moving from the bullpen to replace Phil Hughes and will look to keep the good times rolling. Oh, and as the video above shows, David Ortiz is hoping the Yankees fans he hugged won't boo him during the weekend series. Red Sox at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. ET

VERLANDER-MEER? Justin Verlander will attempt to become the first pitcher since Johnny Vander Meer to throw consecutive no-hitters and will do so against a hot Kansas City team with Eric Hosmer fresh off two home runs in Yankee Stadium. Both team have 20 wins, with the Tigers adding an extra loss, so second place is at stake. Verlander will be opposed by Luke Hochevar, who still isn't delivering on his pedigree as a former No. 1 pick but is at the very least showing signs of progress and doesn't look like he'll flame out of baseball in a couple years anymore with a 4.91 mark. Royals at Tigers, 7:05 p.m. ET

FIRST AT STAKE:
 There's no love lost between the Cardinals and Reds, who meet for a pivotal three-game series this weekend. The Reds are 1 1/2 games behind St. Louis for first in the NL Central. Cincinnati has its work cut out for itself as the Cardinals have generally handled the Reds well over the last couple of years and are on a hot streak, winning five of the last seven games. Kyle Lohse, who has bounced back after a couple forgettable seasons after a strong contract year with St. Louis in 2008, will dance with Bronson Arroyo, who is continuing his impressive streak as a solid, durable pitcher. Cardinals at Reds, 7:10 p.m. ET

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Posted on: April 22, 2011 1:54 am
 

3 up, 3 down: Lohse, Hernandez twirl gems

Lohse

By Evan Brunell

3 UP

Kyle Lohse, Cardinals -- Yes, you read that right. Kyle Lohse is in the '3 Up' category. He does this because he two-hit the Nationals in a complete game, punching out six while walking just two. That lowers Lohse's ERA to a sterling 2.01, although it'd be nice to see Lohse pitch against a team with actual offense. The Nats, Dodgers and Giants don't quite cut it. Still, it's possible Lohse has rediscovered the Dave Duncan magic.

Felix Hernandez, Mariners -- A game Hernandez squeaked out by pitching at the top of his game? What is this, 2010? Felix went nine, allowing just four hits to the Athletics while striking out eight and walking three. He needed that zero in the runs category to win as Seattle could only muster one run in a brilliant performance himself by Brandon McCarthy, who went the distance in the loss. (Which technically only required eight innings.) Hernandez will need to buy a gold watch for Adam Kennedy, he of 72 homers in 1,503 games, who batted third and swatted a home run. Get ready for a season's worth of wisecracks against the Mariners' O.

Pedro Alvarez, Pirates -- And Pittsburgh breathes a big sigh. Alvarez went 3-for-4, swatting a home run and adding two RBI and runs apiece. Now the much-hyped prospect is only hitting .212/.278/.303! Alvarez is expected to be an important power hitter in the middle of the order for Pittsburgh, which desperately needs things to start going right in its never-ending quest for .500. A game like this qualifies as news to note for the Bucs.

3 DOWN

Felipe Lopez, Rays -- Go ahead and snicker. Someone who got signed to a minor-league contract, is on his eighth team (ninth if you don't count two separate tours with the Cardinals) and has thoroughly underwhelming career numbers is batting third for the Rays. Except, it's kinda worked out so far as Lopez has a .261/.292/.457 line. Like I said, kinda. But that line took a hit Thursday as Lopez whiffed three times, even if he scratched together a hit. There's going to start being a few more games like this and while Lopez is still deserving of a starting spot, at least for now, he'll end up dropped in the order quickly.

Chris Perez, Indians -- Ouch. The AL's best team (check the standings) took a rough loss Thursday as closer Chris Perez coughed up a two-run single to Melky Cabrera in the bottom ninth to cap off loading the bases en route to a 3-2 loss. Perez has been rather good so far this year, grabbing six saves and even after giving up two runs to the Royals, still has a 2.25 ERA. But he's not this good, and this is the start of a more human Perez. With the win, K.C. moves to within one game of Cleveland for the division lead. Wait, is this 2014?

James McDonald, Pirates -- McDonald really impressed last year after he came over from the Dodgers in an ill-advised deal for L.A. that got them Octavio Dotel. This year, though, he's busy living up to what it means to be a Pirate, giving up eight runs in three innings to the Marlins balloon his ERA to 10.13. McDonald still has the potential to emerge as a solid No. 3, but has also had to deal with Florida, Cincinatti and Colorado. A much tougher go of it than Lohse.

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Posted on: March 29, 2011 5:56 pm
Edited on: March 29, 2011 9:35 pm
 

Five teams to improve, five to decline in 2011

By Matt Snyder

Finally, spring training is concluding. Now we have a day or two before your favorite team begins play. In the meantime, I'm here to bring you the top five teams to decline and the top five to improve upon their 2010 performances. In return, you accuse me of bias and call me names. It's fun for everyone, really. One thing to keep in mind is that improving or declining by more than 10 games is pretty drastic. On some of these, I'm looking at something like a seven-game swing.

TOP FIVE TEAMS TO IMPROVE

1. Boston Red Sox. Well, let's see ... Last season Kevin Youkilis only played 102 games, Dustin Pedroia saw action in 75 and Jacoby Ellsbury just 18. Josh Beckett was either injured or ineffective all season. Meanwhile the Red Sox added Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez to a team that won 89 games, despite all those injury woes -- and some underachieving from people like John Lackey. Easiest call on the board here, and even Yankees fans would have to concede this team is loaded.

2. Oakland A's. The pitching staff is stellar, even including the bullpen. The starting rotation is already really good and only getting better. The A's won 81 with one of the worst offenses in baseball last season. A full season of Coco Crisp, Kurt Suzuki bouncing back and the additions of Hideki Matsui and Josh Willingham don't exactly sound like adding Gonzalez and Crawford, but small improvements will do wonders for the pitching staff. Slugger Chris Carter is waiting in the wings, too, and don't be surprised if Billy Beane adds a bat at the deadline.

3. Colorado Rockies. Troy Tulowitzki needs to stay healthy and Dexter Fowler needs to get closer to his ceiling. I'm going out on a limb that both happen, along with steps forward from Chris Iannetta and Ian Stewart. Watch Jhoulys Chacin's development in the starting rotation, too. He's got big potential.

4. Milwaukee Brewers. This is contingent upon the big names staying healthy and Zack Greinke getting healthy as soon as possible, because this team is paper-thin. But the top line is very impressive. Plus, the division is not very good at all. The Brewers are going to score runs, get good starting pitching (again, assuming the health thing) and have a good back-end of the bullpen. If they can overcome defense and depth deficiencies, they'll win the Central.

5. Florida Marlins. Call it a bit of a gut call, but I really like the Marlins. The rotation really has great potential with Javier Vazquez returning to a pitcher's park in the NL East (he's apparently too intimidated by being a Yankee) and Ricky Nolasco having the ability to be a true No. 2 if he can ever stay consistent. Anibal Sanchez and Chris Volstad have -- again, this word -- potential to be solid at the end, with stud Josh Johnson leading the five-some. I love the outfield potential of Logan Morrison, Chris Coghlan and Mike Stanton, so long as all three can stay healthy. Hanley Ramirez is primed to have a big season, too.

TOP FIVE TEAMS TO DECLINE

1. San Diego Padres. Removing Gonzalez from the middle of the batting order changes the complexion of everything. And Mat Latos is already hurt, which does nothing to alleviate the concern of the huge workload increase he's experienced over the past two seasons. Most of all, the Padres just seem outmanned by the Giants and Rockies. Winning close to 90 games seems outlandish. Of course, many people said that last year, too.

2. Houston Astros. They overachieved in a big way last season according to run differential (the 'Stros allowed 118 more runs than they scored) and aren't any better. Other than Hunter Pence, the position players are either getting old (Carlos Lee), still unproven (Brett Wallace) or just not that good (Jason Michaels, Bill Hall, Michael Bourn). I'm not a huge fan of the rotation, but it's going to have to carry the team. Good luck with that.

3. Tampa Bay Rays. This is difficult. It's hard to not love the Rays for being so good at sticking with the Yankees and Red Sox in the mighty AL East on that paltry payroll. The loss of Crawford hurts. Carlos Pena wasn't overly productive -- though he was much better than his batting average said -- last season, but his presence helps everyone else see better pitches. That goes away with Dan Johnson at first. The loss of Matt Garza isn't a big deal, so long as Jeremy Hellickson does his thing and James Shields returns to form. The bullpen is worse, though. Look, I'd pick the Rays to win the NL Central if they were in it, but the Yankees aren't any worse and the Red Sox are way better. The Orioles should be better as well. I think the Rays win in the ballpark of 86 games, but that's 10 worse than last year and good for third place.

4. Toronto Blue Jays. They're still building and are moving in the right direction, but winning 85 games again in that division is a very tall order. Any offensive bounce-back from the likes of Aaron Hill and Adam Lind is negated by Jose Bautista's return to this planet.

5. St. Louis Cardinals. If anyone can pull this off, it's Dave Duncan, but losing Adam Wainwright was a death blow. Chris Carpenter is old and injury-prone. Jaime Garcia is due a massive regression. Kyle Lohse was awful last year and Jake Westbrook doesn't have good stuff. Kyle McClellan could very well prove a solid No. 5 starter, but he hasn't exceeded 75 2/3 innings the past three seasons in the bullpen. Can he really double that and remain effective? The outfield defense won't do the staff any favors, either. The Pujols/Holliday/Rasmus combo -- and even Lance Berkman in a best-case scenario -- is very solid, but there's only going to be so much they can do on some nights. I feel like mid-to-high 70s in wins, but Duncan and Tony La Russa find ways to make people wrong often.

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Posted on: March 14, 2011 10:55 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 11:54 am
 

3 up, 3 down for 3/14: Pie's day

By C. Trent Rosecrans

3 UP

1. Kyle Lohse, Cardinals -- Lohse has been a weak, expensive link in the Cardinals' rotation the last two years, but is impressing this spring. On Monday, Lohse allowed just one hit over six innings against the Braves. This spring, he's allowed just two runs in 13 innings.

2. Matt Cain, Giants -- In his first start since the spring opener, Cain pitched three hitless innings against the Brewers on Monday. Cain hadn't pitched since Feb. 27 because of inflammation in his right elbow.

3. Felix Pie, Orioles -- The outfielder had a hit in four at-bats Wednesday, but he's here because it was his day, Pi Day (3.14). Sure, it's a stretch, but it's just spring training.

3 DOWN

Andrew McCutchen

1. Andrew McCutchen, Pirates -- Not only did McCutchen lose his glove trying to catch a home run by Baltimore's Randy Winn, in the same inning he was thrown out at the plate and complained that Orioles catcher Matt Wieters didn't avoid contact as much as he should in spring training (pictured).

2. Bruce Chen, Blake Wood, Jason Kendall, Royals -- One of the best days of spring is the one scheduled off day. For players (and reporters) the one day without a game in March is the prize of six weeks in Arizona and Florida, who go without a day to themselves from the middle of February until April. The Royals trio all had to show up to work on Monday, Chen and Wood worked in a minor-league intrasquad game, while Kendall continued his rehab from shoulder surgery.

3. Chris Sale, White Sox -- The 21-year-old lefty was good last season after being called up at the end of the year, but has struggled this spring. Chicago's first-round pick in the 2010 draft allowed three runs in the fifth inning of Monday's game against the Padres. He has a 7.36 ERA in five appearances this spring.

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More MLB coverage
Posted on: February 23, 2011 4:30 pm
Edited on: February 24, 2011 12:47 pm
 

Who replaces Wainwright?

Dave Duncan

While there's not exactly a great time to lose a pitcher that's been in the top three of the Cy Young voting each of the last two years, February may be one of the better times to get that kind of bad news.

Tony La Russa, Dave Duncan (above) and John Mozeliak at least have time to assess their options.

First off, it puts more pressure on Kyle Lohse, who goes from the highest-paid No. 5 in the league to the highest-paid No. 4 ($11.875 million both this season and next).

For now, La Russa said (from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch), "We're not going to look outside the organization. The answer is here."

So what's the answer? Here's a multiple choice.

Kyle McClellan1. Kyle McClellan -- One of the Cardinals best options out of the bullpen the last couple of years, McClellan came up as a starter and was even in the race to make the rotation last season before being beat out by Jaime Garcia. He has the arsenal to start -- including a slider he's shelved the last two years in the bullpen -- and is likely the favorite.

2. Lance Lynn -- A big right-hander (6-foot-6, 250), Lynn was 13-10 with a  4.77 ERA at Triple-A Memphis last season. He struck out 141 batters in 164 innings last season. He pitches in the mid-90s and also has a decent curveball and changeup. Having spent more than a year at Triple-A, he's likely to debut sometime this season, regardless of what happens out of the gate.

Ian Snell3. Ian Snell -- The Cardinals signed the former Pirate to a minor-league contract this offseason, hoping he'd be Duncan's next reclamation project. Snell was a 14-game winner for the Pirates in 2006 (with a 4.74 ERA), but has gone 23-39 with a 4.74 ERA since. Last season he started eight games for the Pirates and appeared in four more, going 0-5 with a 6.41 ERA.

4. P.J. Walters -- Walters started three games for the Cardinals last season, going 2-0 with a 3.94 ERA. Walters gave up nearly a hit an inning, but also managed to miss bats, striking out 11 in 16 innings as a starter. He was less successful as a reliever, but showed promise as a starter. He went seven innings on Sept. 29 against the Pirates, allowing just three hits and no runs.

5. Adam Ottavino -- Like Walters, Ottavino started three games for the Cardinals in 2010. He went 0-2 with a 7.53 ERA in his two starts, allowing 12 runs in 14 1/3 innings, while walking eight. He was taken off the team's 40-man roster this offseason. He was 5-3 with a 3.97 ERA in nine starts at Memphis last season.

Shelby Miller6. Shelby Miller -- Miller breaking camp probably isn't going to happen -- and shouldn't. Miller is the team's top -- and some say only -- prospect. Miller has a bright future, but his only experience so far is 26 games in the low-A Midwest League. Last season he went 7-5 with a 3.62 ERA for Quad Cities. He has a good fastball and curveball, but has yet to show command of his changeup. Miller will be in St. Louis soon, just not this soon.

Sure, they say they're looking in-house first, but they may not like what they see and decide to go outside. It wouldn't be the first time La Russa said something and then did the opposite. There are a few available options:

Kevin Millwood1. Kevin Millwood -- The veteran has been holding out for a big-league contract, perhaps anticipating such an opportunity as this. Still, Millwood may not get that big-league contract from the Cardinals. He was 4-16 with a 5.10 ERA for the Orioles last season.

2.  Joe Blanton -- The Phillies have said they're holding on to their fifth starter, but the Cardinals could be tempted. The problem is St. Louis' system isn't very deep and may lack the prospects to land Blanton, unless Philadelphia is looking to give him away.

3. Yankees castoffs -- The Yankees have certainly searched the scrap heap to replace Andy Pettitte, signing Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia. If either -- or both -- of those veterans are jettisoned before the end of spring training, the Cardinals could bring either in to work with Duncan.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: October 5, 2010 10:49 am
 

Cardinals offer La Russa a chance to return

Tony La Russa says he hasn't made a decision about 2011, but speaking to the media on Monday, he sounded like someone who was ready to move on.

"Fifteen years is a long time for one guy in one place," La Russa told reporters, including Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch . "As great as this place is, at some point, it's going to be good when the new guy comes in. I think it's going to refresh the whole situation."

Tony La Russa As two managers were let go on Monday, the Cardinals did extend an offer to La Russa to manage the team in 2011.

La Russa met with GM John Mozeliak and team chairman Bill DeWitt for about 90 minutes.

"We certainly talked about next year and our interest to have him return," Mozeliak told Matthew Leach of MLB.com . "It was a very productive meeting [about a matter] that we hope to have resolved within 7-10 days."

La Russa noted pitching coach Dave Duncan, who has been with La Russa since 1982 with the White Sox, wants to return and the organization has expressed their interest in him returning as well.

Still, with La Russa not saying much of substance, reporters were forced to look at his actions and analyze his words. La Russa is driving to his Bay Area-home for the first time since his first season in St. Louis and loaded up his vehicle with books, plaques, magazines, baseball cards and two seatbacks from the second Busch Stadium. A "clubhouse regular" said he'd never seen La Russa take so much home with him.

However, his parting words offered some hope that he'd return.

"We want to get better," he said. And as Goold notes, he did say, "we" when referring to the future of the Cardinals.

As for the future of the Cardinals, make sure to read Joe Strauss' look at the team's payroll for 2011 in the Post-Dispatch . The team is already tied up to the tune of $80 million in nine players -- already a higher payroll than the Reds had this year for their entire squad. The team owes nearly $50 million to four players alone, Albert Pujols, Matt Holliday, Chris Carpenter and Kyle Lohse (which one of these is not like the other?). It's hard to see how the Cardinals won't break the $100-million mark in payroll next season and still have the same depth problem they had this year.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: September 16, 2010 10:57 pm
Edited on: September 16, 2010 10:57 pm
 

Cards GM says Rasmus won't be traded

Colby Rasmus Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak told fans at the team's Social Media Night that the team has "no interest" in trading disgruntled center fielder Colby Rasmus and that the position is "locked" for the Cardinals in 2011.

He also said he expects payroll to rise in the next three years and that he hopes Tony La Russa's status will be resolved early in the winter.

Rasmus requested a trade in July, a request the Cardinals didn't honor then and apparently won't this offseason, either.

"A lot of times players, out of frustration or for whatever reason, may go into a meeting and come out saying some things they may regret," Mozeliak said (via MLB.com's Matthew Leach ). "But a lot of times, you have to understand, these things never get out there. In this particular case, it's been festering for a while. But I can assure you, Colby's not  going to be treaded. I can assure you that some of the things he's dealing with are typical growing pains that young players go through. When I look at the talent he brings to the table, and when I think about how I could replace that, I realize that would be a very difficult task ahead."

As for the payroll, the Cardinals don't have much flexibility to go anywhere but up when it comes to the team's nearly $100-million payroll, especially if the team agrees to an extension with Albert Pujols.

The only big salary coming off the books is Brad Penny, who made $7.5 million this season. Kyle Lohse and Adam Wainwright are also scheduled for bumps in salary.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .


 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com