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Carlos Beltran in center field tonight for first time since 2010

Jun 1, 2012, 3:15 PM EDT

beltran getty Getty Images

Jon Jay and Skip Schumaker are on the disabled list, along with a half-dozen of the Cardinals’ other key players, so manager Mike Matheny is getting creative with tonight’s lineup: Carlos Beltran is playing center field for the first time since 2010.

That last center field start in 2010 came for the Mets, but tonight the 35-year-old Beltran will be playing against the Mets in New York.

He’ll be flanked by Matt Holliday in left field and Allen Craig in right field. Craig actually started in center field five times for the Cardinals last season, but since then he’s had knee surgery and just returned from a disabled list stint for a hamstring injury.

Shane Robinson and Adron Chambers are the other options in center field, which is why Matheny is willing to take the hit defensively–or at least put Beltran’s knees at increased risk–to get more offensive punch into the lineup.

  1. ajcardsfan - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    Is anybody else as nervous as me at having Beltran in CF? I think I’d rather see Robinson playing out there because I just don’t want to risk Beltran getting injured.

    • El Bravo - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:36 PM

      I am! (on my fantasy team)…all they keep discussing is his sore knee and then they throw him in CF????

  2. bigleagues - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:29 PM

    I remember a few weeks ago, a certain someone stating that the Holliday/Beltran/Craig alignment in the OF was unavoidable, although it was stated when Jay was still active.

  3. okwhitefalcon - Jun 1, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    The trust level in Shane Robinson and Adron Chambers has obviously expired short term.

    Bad knee in CF and balky hammy in RF from productive middle of the order bats, high risk indeed.

  4. okwhitefalcon - Jun 1, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    This weekend in Citi could prove very interesting for sure, Maikel Cleto and Sam Freeman have been called up to take the places of Brandon Dixon and Chuckie Fick in the Cards bullpen.

    On deck hitters and Mr Met should be issued riot gear, these two along with Eduardo Sanchez could very well leave a mark or six to anyone within 30 feet of home plate.

  5. okwhitefalcon - Jun 1, 2012 at 5:25 PM

    A big “I told you so” is probably in order here but I’ll refrain cuz it just sucks.

    From Mike Matheny per STL Post Dispatch’s Derrick Goold:

    “Garcia has returned to St. Louis. Not with team now and Matheny says June 5 start is not a guarantee. A Plan B might be necessary”

    And to compound depth, flexibility and overexposure issues to inexperienced fringe players, it looks as though Schumacher will be out longer than first diagnosed yesterday.

    From MLB.Coms Cards beat writer Jenifer Longosch:

    “Manager Mike Matheny said he has been told that Skip Schumaker will likely be out 4 weeks with the right hamstring strain.”

  6. dickclydesdale - Jun 2, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    Beltran is going to the hall of fame

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