Robinson gets start in leadoff spot Saturday

Robinson gets start in leadoff spot Saturday

PHILADELPHIA -- Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has repeatedly said he will look for opportunities to use his bench players. So with Matt Carpenter -- who led off the last two games -- and usual top-of-the-order hitter Jon Jay both enduring 0-for-12 skids, the time seemed right for a different leadoff look Saturday night.

Shane Robinson, whose only start of the season was wiped out with the two-inning aborted game Tuesday night in Pittsburgh, led off and got the start in center field.

Carpenter joined Jay on the bench, with Daniel Descalso playing second and batting seventh.

"Shane had such a strong spring, we'll try to take advantage of him at the top of the lineup to start something," Matheny said. "You try to get him into some pinch-hitting situations, but you can only get so much out of them.

"He has to work at it. It's part of the job, finding a routine where they get comfortable when they do have those opportunities."

Robinson, who had 11 pinch-hits in 2012, hit .438 in Spring Training with a .719 slugging percentage.

Jay Greenberg is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.