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Hello, offense

Colby Rasmus busted out of his spring slumber Saturday with five hits against the Nationals at Space Coast Stadium

It was an impressive feat by any measure, raising his batting average to .293 and erasing the ugly numbers he had put up so far. But I am more interested to see how Rasmus reacts to the performance more than I am interested in the performance itself. Will the prospective centerfielder get hot and win a job with the big club, or will he slip back toward mediocrity?

While Rasmus tries to make a name for himself, Cardinals outfielder Ryan Ludwick took steps Saturday to get his groove back. He was 2-for-4 against Washington with five RBIs. Four of them came on one swing of the bat when Ludwick whacked a grand slam. The outburst raised Ludwick's batting average to .188 for the spring.

David Freese, back in the third base derby by default, had a two-hit day to raise his batting average to .273 on the spring. 

The downside was the pitching. After a pretty decent start by Kyle Lohse, Kyle McClellan was absolutely terrible. The Cardinals led 12-1 before Lohse entered the contest and surrendered six earned rusn on six hits and a pair of walks. Royce Ring came in and pitched a third of an inning, allowing three earned runs on three hits. The next thing you know, the 12-1 game is 12-11...

McClellan's ERA ballooned to 10.64 while Ring one upped him by moving his mark for the spring to 11.12. Yikes.

Jason Motte, however, was able to regain control and hammered down his fourth save in an uneventful inning. He struck out one, walked none and gave up no hits while lowering his ERA to 1.08.