CARDS FALL TO MARLINS IN GRAPEFRUIT LEAGUE OPENER: We will usually be reporting game scores and information right after the game finishes during Spring Training, but today we had to push it to the news and notes section. The Cards lost to the Marlins yesterday by a score of 8-3. Trevor Rosenthal struggled, allowing five hits, two walks and four earned runs over two innings. Said Matheny after the game: “He was trying to hump up a little bit when we didn’t need to…He was anxious. He threw a lot of pitches in the bullpen.” On the bright side, the Cardinals’ top pick in the 2012 draft, Michael Wacha, the Cardinals’ first-round draft pick last June, threw two scoreless innings, in which 19 of his 21 pitches were strikes. The Cardinals play the Red Sox today at 12:05 CST. Below is the lineup, courtesy of B.J. Rains. For more on yesterday’s game, check out Rob Rains’ postcard from yesterday.
INJURY REPORT: Matt Adams will be unavailable today after playing nine innings on Saturday and reporting some leg discomfort afterwards. Ty Wigginton will get the start at first base today….Rafael Furcal will also start at DH today which is somewhat encouraging. It is not known when he will take the field for the first time though….Allen Craig also sat out for Saturday’s opener as he has a little bit of shoulder soreness that the team seems to be just reacting cautiously.
SCHEDULE STRENGTH: Buster Olney writes this morning about the teams with the hardest schedules to begin the season. The Pirates are listed at number one, given that in their first 42 games, 33 of them are against teams with a 2012 record of .500 or better. Here’s what Olney had to say about the Cardinals, who are ranked at number seven:
Games against teams with records of .500 or better in 2012: 26 of their first 41 games.
Home/road: 19 of their first 41 games are at home.
Schedule notes: They’ll face a string of contenders at the outset of the season, with 12 straight against Diamondbacks, Giants, Reds and Brewers. It won’t be easy early on for them.
The hurdle ahead: The Cardinals will have a chance to feast right before the All-Star break, with nine straight games against the Astros, Marlins and Cubs.
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