Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Jordan Likely to Start Tonight, but Torre Not Sure Where

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Jordan Likely to Start Tonight, but Torre Not Sure Where

Article excerpt

Gregg Jefferies brought a friend into the office of Cardinals manager Joe Torre on Monday afternoon.

"Hi, my name's Brian Jordan," said the other man. "I play outfield for the St. Louis Cardinals."

Or, at least he used to. Jordan, plagued by a sore left shoulder that was operated on last year, hasn't started a game this month. But Jordan has assured Torre he is ready to play again, and Torre will comply, probably tonight against the Chicago Cubs. He just doesn't know where.

"I really don't know who to take out," Torre said. "Bernie (Bernard Gilkey) hit the ball hard the last couple of days. (Mark) Whiten just got back and (Ray) Lankford is the best one going so far."

Jordan has shown power despite his ailment - eight of his 13 hits have been for extra bases - but he is batting just .213 and has played just 19 of the 29 games.

Anxious to return, Jordan said: "We need some excitement over here. I didn't mean to get on him or anything but I wanted to let him know that I am ready. We need some enthusiasm. Hit a home run, jump up and down, get the crowd into it."

For those who would want to trade one of the Cardinals' four outfielders, consider this: Torre has had them on hand for just 15 of 29 games this season, and last year he had them available for just 65 of 172 days.

Torre said he was thinking about starting Jose Oquendo at second base. Luis Alicea and Geronimo Pena had been hitless in their last six starts before Monday night, and both were batting under .200.

Oquendo hasn't played more than three games in succession in the last three seasons, but part of the reason for that was injury problems.

The Chicago Cubs entered the series with the major leagues' worst record at 8-20, but Torre said he wasn't necessarily leery of them. "I'd be more leery if we were knocking people out," Torre explained.

"Then, you always have a tendency to take someone lightly. …

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