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07 April 2009

First Place Bucs, NO JOKE!

The old grizzly vet, if you can call 31 old, stepped up to the plate with 2 outs and the bases loaded in the top of the 9th inning, down 2 runs. Jack Wilson, the longest tenured player on the Bucs roster, on the heels of an 0-4 day with 2 strikeouts, knew the odds weren't in his favor. When he looked out at the mound, he saw a rookie flame thrower making his first save appearance in the Majors in Jason Motte, this was the time to give the "kid" his MLB initiation.

Jack Wilson vaulted the Pittsburgh Pirates into first place yesterday smashing a 96 mph fastball into the left center field gap clearing the bases for a 3 run double in the top of the 9th. His hit capped a 4 run 9th inning, allowing the Bucs to take a 2 run lead into the bottom of the 9th. Matt Capps successfully navigated his way though the bottom half of the 9th inning, securing a 6-4 win over the St. Louis Cardinals for the first "W" of 2009.

Paul Maholm on the hill for opening day, was a model of consistency. Paulie went 6 2/3 innings, keeping his pitch count down and cruising through the Cardinals lineup with almost relative ease. The 3rd inning was his only trouble spot loading the bases and giving up 2 runs, but a double play turned by the LaRoche brothers bailed him out of the jam. Paulie never looked back.


I'm in the process of developing exactly how I want to do in season "reporting." I figure, if you want a game recap, you can buy any newspaper, or "google" your way around the Internet and find what you need to know via a box score. There are going to be times when I can't write for a couple days. So what I'm going to try to do, during games that I get to watch, and others I get to hear on the radio, I will keep notes of things that jump out to me. Then as I get a chance to write, I'll scour my notes of things that I liked or disliked. This is going to be a trial by fire, so bear with me, if anyone has any suggestions, or if boss man Toad wants something else, I'll change it up.

Did anyone noticed the Bucs new uniforms yesterday? The uniform scheme was no different than in the past in the way of color and looks, except they had sleeves. I like the newer old look, however one player looked out of place to me. Nate McClouth is just built for sleeveless uniforms, no idea why, but the new uniform on him didn't look right to me.

Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright continually threw hard breaking balls in the dirt, some struggling to even make it to home plate. What was our obsession with swinging at every one of these pitches? The Bucs did run his pitch count up near 100 in 5 1/3 innings, but lay off the junk and we chase him a lot sooner.

Has Cardinals Manager Tony LaRussa gone mad? He has inked Khalil Greene, a SS who batted .213 with 10 home runs last year, in the cleanup spot of his batting order protecting Mr. Baseball himself Albert Pujols. Who in their right mind is going to pitch to Pujols when they can walk him and face the weak hitting Greene instead?

Nyjer Morgan, you amaze me! As stated in an earlier post, this is the one guy who will likely make me run head first into a steel wall, but yesterday, he looked like a Major League ball player, kind of! At the plate, he held his own, and impressed going 3-5 with 3 singles, 2 RBI's, and a stolen base. But this guy in the field, is a train wreck. He misplayed a fly ball in the mid innings that should have been caught, then booted it to Nate McClouth in center field. Where is the steel wall?

Watching Tony LaRussa in game one of the season near tears as his team collapsed in the 9th inning was priceless. The Cardinals blew 31 saves last year, they're on pace for 162 this year!


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