Congratulations to Tony La Russa on his 5,000 game managed in the major leagues. It's a shame his offense couldn't be there to share the occasion.
The Cardinals, fighting to hold onto first place in the National League Central, turned in a clunker at the plate. They were shut out 8-0 by former St. Louis farmhand Chris Narveson who has had trouble keeping his ERA below five runs a game.
Meanwhile, St. Louis starter Kyle Lohse didn't have his best stuff. He struggled out of jams through five innings, allowing four runs before departing for a relatively early shower.
But I felt worst for La Russa when I watched Colby Rasmus get away with garbage in the field that would have got a high school player benched.
On a ball hit to right centerfield, rightfielder Jon Jay hustled back to the fence in hot pursuit. He fell just short of getting to the ball which hit the wall and bounded back toward the infield. I shouted "Where is Ramus?!?" at the television just in time to see the reverse angle. The Cardinals talented but unconcerned centerfielder was standing in place, casually watching the developlments until he saw that Jay couldn't catch the ball. Then he jogged in the general direction of right field while the baserunner headed to third with a triple.
If I was La Russa -- or if La Russa was 1988 La Russa -- time would have been called and Rasmus would have been removed from the game to rest his weary 24-year-old bones for a week or two on the bench. If Whitey Herzog was still in charge, Rasmus would be unpacking his suitcase right now in Memphis.
There is absolutely no excuse for Rasmus' recent bout of extreme laziness. A major league centerfielder should back up the corner outfielders on every single ball hit into the corners. Really, what else does he have to be doing at that particular minute. And there is no excuse not to run full speed on the bases, either. And don't get me started about catching the ball with two hands.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Ryan Theriot had two hits in four at bats to start a new hitting streak after his previous run was snapped at 19. He accounted for a third of the Redbirds' safety.
Cardinals Play of the Game: In the fourth inning the Brewers had runners at the corners and no one out. On an infield ground ball, the Birds nailed Fielder at the plate. I have to give St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina credit for standing his ground against the sizable Milwaukee first sacker.