Two outta three ain't bad/Lohse vs. Eaton

. . .Is it? That's what the Phillies are going for today in St. Louis. It's actually a pretty nice morning right now. Took a quick glance at the weather forecast and I don't think the temperature is going to be too insufferable today. Brett Myers is pitching against Mitchell Boggs this afternoon.

Boggs could end up being like Kyle Kendrick for these Cardinals. He was called up on June 7 to replace righthander Todd Wellemeyer in the rotation, but didn't give St. Louis an excuse to send him back to the minors in his first start, allowing two runs on four hits in five innings of a 7-2 win over Cincinnati on June 10.

Myers, meanwhile, will look to rebound from his outing against Florida, when he allowed five runs, all on home runs, in 5 1/3 innings of a 5-4 loss.

My gut says he is going to pitch pretty well today. All season, home runs have been his problem. He's given up 18 this season, tied with two other players for the most in the National League. Earlier in the week, the Marlins hit three off of him. He recently went four straight starts without allowing one. Not surprisingly, that was his best stretch of starts this season. The Cardinals have some power with Duncan and Ankiel, but not nearly as much as some of the other teams Myers has faced this season.


Kris Benson was throwing between 86 and 89 miles an hour yesterday in three innings of a simulated game. But the real question is how he bounces back. He's had encouraging performances like this before. I'd reserve any optimism until he gets back on the mound for another appearance.


At the hotel bar last night a few other writers and myself were discussing the Kyle Lohse situation. Obviously, yesterday, he pitched great, and has done so for most of the season.

But it's hard to say the Phillies should have signed him, even in hindsight.

The question: if the Phils bring in Lohse, even at 1 year and $4.25 million, how would they juggle their personnel to fit him in.

One writer argued that if the Phillies had signed Lohse early in the offseason as they had tried, they never would have made the Brad Lidge deal, and may not have brought in Pedro Feliz to play third. Regardless of how well Lohse has played, I think the team is better with Lidge at closer, Feliz at third and Myers in the rotation then it would have been with Myers at closer, Dobbs or Helms at third, and Lohse in the rotation.

Now, let's say they get him late in spring training. . .

Who do you kick out of the rotation? Obviously not Hamels, Myers or Moyer. So it's either Kendrick or Eaton. Lohse has out-pitched Eaton this season. But not to the point where it would have been worth making Eaton the most expensive middle reliever in baseball. And though Lohse's results have been better than Kendrick's, you can't send Kendrick down to the minors and risk ruining all the progress he's made.

It's interesting to think about. . .