Boggs thriving in eighth-inning role this season

Boggs thriving in eighth-inning role this season

Boggs thriving in eighth-inning role this season
ST. LOUIS -- Mitchell Boggs doesn't necessarily pay attention to the numbers he posts, but the rest of the Cardinals' clubhouse certainly has.

Boggs has assumed the role as St. Louis' setup man this season, and he has proved to be one of the most reliable arms out of the bullpen. The 28-year-old right-hander hasn't allowed a run in his last 16 appearances, holding opposing batters to a .234 batting average in 12 2/3 innings over that time.

Cardinals starters have thrown 20 straight starts of at least six innings, which sets up nicely for Boggs to handle eighth-inning duties. It's a job he's gladly taken on this year.

"I'm not hitting third for the Yankees," Boggs joked, "but this year's been big for me. I think I have a role on this team that helps us win games, something I've always wanted to do. I certainly expect to continue pitching the way I've been pitching."

Boggs said the consistency of knowing he has a job to do has helped him fall into a bit of a routine. He added that he's been focusing on not trying to do too much while being aggressive and maintaining his mechanics has been the key once he's on the mound.

That combination has helped him get to where he is this season, leading Cardinals relievers with a 1.71 ERA and putting him at the top of the National League in the same category.

"In the past I've bounced around a lot and it certainly doesn't make it easy," Boggs said. "But this year I've kind of been able to settle into a role, and you just show up every single day and prepare yourself and get ready.

"It's nice to be able to show up and know what's expected of you and know that these guys have faith in me and have confidence in me."