September 16th, 2007

Teams

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9   R H E
Chicago 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 0 0   4 13 1
St. Louis 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0   2 9 0
W – J. Marquis (12-8)  L  - M. Mulder (0-3) S – R. Dempster (28)
Homeruns: M. Murton (7)

Box Score

In the final game of the series against the Cardinals, Lou went with an interesting plan. That plan was to play not one, not two, not three, but four subs in the starting lineup and home for a series win. With Mark Mulder on the mound, given his struggles, it was probably as good of a time as any to give some of the regulars a day off. Anyone can hit Mulder, right? Well, Lou pulled the right strings and had production spring forth from all four of the subs. My question to you then is this.

Which of the four subs in the lineup today would you like to see more of down the stretch?

Geovany Soto was probably the biggest story of the day with his four hits behind the plate, two of which were doubles. He’s now hitting .423 this season with a slugging percentage of .692. He’s not had too many starts behind the plate since he recall, but has played well when the call has come. With Jason Kendall in a 5 for 42 funk in September, we’ll probably see more from Soto down the stretch.

Matt Murton has been one of those players that is either loved or hated. Some think this guy is the next great batting champion and others think he’s the second coming of a guy like Brant Brown, an outfielder we valued too high for too long. Regardless of where your allegiance lies, Matty came up big today with a three run bomb that was all the run support Jason Marquis needed today. With Cliff Floyd somewhat ailing due to old age, despite him only being 34 years old, Murton could be a viable option in right field down the stretch.

Ronny Cedeno played short today for the struggling Ryan Theriot and picked up an RBI in the process. His biggest issue has been the fielding, which was supposed to be one of his strengths. Theriot is hitting .172 in the month of September and could be worn out. Ronny Cedeno could get more time in the lineup if Theriot’s poor play continues and Cedeno can show he can handle the position.

Craig Monroe is the only one of the four that I can’t really see getting any serious time down the stretch. He’s not good in CF and would probably take a back seat to Murton in right. Nonetheless, he picked up a hit and scored a run in the win today.

So who’s your sub down the stretch? Which of these three? Or maybe it’s someone not in the lineup today. Who’s going to be most valuable off the bench and in a role of sub / semi-starter down the stretch?

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail