Cardinals bringing Boyer along slowly

Cards bringing Boyer along slowly

ST. LOUIS -- The newest Cardinal isn't available for one more night.

Right-hander Blaine Boyer, acquired in a trade from the Braves on Monday, threw a bullpen session for Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan on Tuesday. That took him out of consideration for a relief appearance in Tuesday night's series opener against the Mets. Instead, Boyer is expected to be ready to pitch on Wednesday against New York.

The Cardinals shouldn't miss Boyer. They're carrying eight relief pitchers, and they didn't play Sunday or Monday. So they should be covered.

"We had plenty of pitching," manager Tony La Russa said. "We'll just play it by ear as we go along, day to day."

The Cards expect to carry 13 pitchers for at least a few days. It's not an emergency alignment. Instead, it's a chance for the club to do some evaluating, and figure out which seven of those eight relievers should stick around.

Additionally, it's nearly three weeks until St. Louis' next off-day, so La Russa feels the Redbirds would be wise to play it safe.

"You don't necessarily need it for today or tomorrow," the manager said. "But now we're in a period where we play 20 in a row, so I think it's probably smart. And it makes sense to get Blaine here and break him in. And at the same time, make sure we're covered. You can't have everything, so we'll just play a position player short."

Matthew Leach is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.