News from around the Central:
- Today's Cards injury update: Ryan Theriot left Friday night's game against Milwaukee after being hit in the shin by a Randy Wolf pitch. Theriot managed to play three more innings after being hit in the bottom of the first, but his leg grew increasingly sore as the game went on and he was removed in the fourth inning.
- Homer Bailey's return to Cincinnati's rotation -- and the imminent return of injured starter Johnny Cueto --meant a trip to the bullpen for former starter Mike Leake. For now, Dusty Baker says that Leake will serve as the Reds' long reliever.
- Pirates pitcher Ross Ohlendorf continues to rehab a right shoulder injury, but he's not happy with the results of his recent live batting practice session: he says his arm isn't in nearly good enough shape for a rehab start.
- Chicago's Aramis Ramirez hasn't hit for power in the first month of the season: he's hit just one home run through 29 games and he's slugging just .377 for the year. Still, Cryin' Mike Quade says he doesn't plan to move Ramirez from his customary cleanup spot in the Cubs' lineup.
- Former Brewer Jason Bourgeois is on a tear, hitting .533 with seven steals in his last ten games. But there's a logjam in the Houston outfield: Michael Bourn is also playing well, Hunter Pence is locked in at right field, and Carlos Lee has recovered from a rib injury suffered last week. Joshua Powling of SBNation Houston wonders: could Bourgeois play second base?
Last night's action:
- The hole got a little bit deeper for Milwaukee, as St. Louis used an excellent pitching performance from Jaime Garcia to rout the Crew, 6-0. Our recap is here.
- It wasn't always pretty, but Cincinnati managed to hold off Chicago for a 5-4 win in the Windy City. Edinson Volquez wasn't at his best, surrendering four runs (three earned) on four walks, six hits, and a couple of wild pitches, to boot, but neither was Matt Garza, who allowed five runs (all earned) in six innings. Jay Bruce powered the Reds' offense with a three-run homer in the fourth.
- Pittsburgh held a 2-1 lead going into the top of the eighth inning, but Houston scored two runs thanks to a walk and a steal from Michael Bourn, a double by Hunter Pence, and a single by Carlos Lee. The blown late lead overshadowed a fine outing for Paul Maholm, who limited the Astros to one run in seven innings, scattering five hits and three walks. Wandy Rodriguez was almost as good for Houston, going seven strong while giving up five hits, two walks and two runs.
CENTRALPALOOZA rolls on today:
- St. Louis and Milwaukee play game two of their three-game series at 3:10 p.m. CDT this afternoon. The Cardinals start Kyle Lohse (4-1, 2.44), while Yovani Gallardo (2-2, 6.10) tries to shake his demons once again for the Crew.
- The Reds and Cubs also play an afternoon game, with a 12:10 p.m. CDT start at Wrigley Field. The Reds send Bronson Arroyo (3-3, 4.17) to the mound to face the Cubs' Casey Coleman (1-2, 7.36)
- Later tonight, Pittsburgh hosts Houston at PNC Park. First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. CDT, with Houston's Bud Norris (2-1, 3.03) facing Charlie Morton (3-1, 3.52) for the Bucs.