Left fielder Alex Presley was scratched from tonight’s lineup to a left thumb contustion, so Chase d’Arnaud will bat leadoff against the Cards. Originally, d’Arnaud — who’s batting .215 , despite hitting safely in four of his past six games — was given the night off so he could sharpen his batting skills. Now, d’Arnaud is atop the batting order for the first time since he was called up from Triple-A Indy.
“I got jammed last night,” Presley said. “It felt OK last night, but today I’m not able to handle the bat the way I’m used to.” Presley had a short, curt response when asked if his thumb stiffened up overnight: “I don’t want to get into what it feels like. It doesn’t feel right.” Presley added that X-rays have not been taken.
»»» I often give the PNC Park scoreboard/in-game entertainment folks a hard time on this blog, mostly for having the lousiest pregame music in the major leagues. The tunes are still awful. But two videos on the scoreboard — the pregame “electricity” bit and the “hoist the colors” rallying cry in the ninth inning — were superb.
Lineups for today’s game:
Cardinals (52-47) – 1. Skip Schumaker 2b, 2. Jon Jay cf, 3. Albert Pujols 1b, 4. Matt Holliday lf, 5. Lance Berkman rf, 6. David Freese 3b, 7. Yadier Molina c, 8. Daniel Descalso ss, 9. Jamie Garcia lhp (9-3, 3.11)
Pirates (51-46) – 1. Chase d’Arnaud 3b, 2.Ronny Cedeno ss, 3. Neil Walker 2b, 4. Andrew McCutchen cf, 5. Steve Pearce rf, 6. Matt Diaz lf, 7. Brandon Wood 1b, 8. Mike McKenry c, 9. Kevin Correia rhp (11-7, 4.04)