Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Cards Notes: Cishek on Roster, Garcia Ready to Go

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Cards Notes: Cishek on Roster, Garcia Ready to Go

Article excerpt

The Cardinals found room for both Steve Cishek and Jaime Garcia on Saturday. Both moves involved Tim Cooney.

Cishek, the reliever acquired from Miami on Friday, joined the team before the game with the Atlanta Braves and lefthanded rookie Cooney, who scored his first big-league victory on Friday, was optioned to Class AAA Memphis to make room on the roster for Cishek.

That means that Garcia, who has been on the disabled list with a left groin strain, is in line to replace Cooney in the rotation and probably will start here Tuesday against Cincinnati.

If so, then veteran John Lackey, who took a smash off his left leg a couple of starts ago, would get an extra day of rest and pitch against Cincinnati on Wednesday next week and also would have an extra day of rest before his subsequent start, which likewise would be against the Reds. Lackey, one of the Cardinals' best starters lately, has reeled off eight straight starts of at least 6 2/3 innings and two or fewer runs allowed.

Garcia, who has a 3-3 record and 1.69 earned-run average, threw five no-hit innings on an injury rehabilitation assignment at Peoria on Thursday and had a good bullpen session here on Saturday.

Cooney, after he had held Atlanta to two runs and five hits in seven innings, said he knew he was here only because Garcia was not. But manager Mike Matheny admitted it was difficult telling Cooney he was going down after such a start.

"Every start he's had he's done a great job and everything we've asked of him," said Matheny. "But the reality of it is that with the guys we have when Jaime's right, the only opportunity we have (for Cooney) is in the bullpen.

"He's proven he can start. We've got to have somebody ready in case something else happens.

"So it was a compliment and a 'not so much' all at the same time. Going down is never fun for these guys, especially after they've done what we've needed them to do.

"It's part of being a young player. It doesn't always make sense, but he gets it. He sees the numbers. He gets the fact that when Jaime is right, (Garcia) is going to be in there.

"We've been very clear that when he's right and he's healthy, we want him on the mound. He felt very good after his start. The results were there. The velocity was there. Everything was right. So, let's go.

"But," said Matheny, "we were very honest with (Cooney). He did nothing but impress us and certainly moved up on the way we evaluate and the rest of the league evaluates, as well. Yesterday would be a tough one to top, the way he commanded every pitch."

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Cooney said he understood the demotion, his third this season. "This time, I feel a lot better about it," the 24-year-old said. "I feel like I helped the team when I was up here.

"I know what I've got to work on to get even better. …

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