Starting spot in jeopardy for Wellemeyer

Wellemeyer's starting spot in jeopardy

ST. LOUIS -- Todd Wellemeyer hasn't officially been bumped from the Cardinals' rotation yet, but his days may well be numbered.

Manager Tony La Russa confirmed on Monday that St. Louis is looking at a number of options for a starting pitcher on Friday night against Houston, which would be the next time Wellemeyer's turn comes up. Wellemeyer has endured a rough season, but it's gotten especially bad lately. Over his past 10 appearances (nine starts), he has a 6.75 ERA with 13 home runs allowed in 48 innings.

"The next time the spot comes open is [Friday]," La Russa said. "So that's four months he's been in the rotation. And the assessment right now is that the inconsistency doesn't match up with the opportunities. So we're evaluating that. He's one of the guys we're evaluating, but there's no commitment yet to who pitches Friday."

Wellemeyer felt there was a great deal to like in his two most recent starts, losses in Houston and Philadelphia. However, the results did not match that assessment. Over the two games, he pitched a total of 10 innings, allowing 12 runs (nine earned) on 18 hits including four home runs.

"I felt really good with all my pitches [on Sunday]," he said. "The line didn't really show it. It was kind of like the Houston game, where two pitches is what did it. That's all there is to it. ... I felt better the past two starts than I have all year. I just wish the results were better."

The Cardinals have a number of options if they choose not to start Wellemeyer, but no single most obvious alternative. Reliever Brad Thompson has started at times this year, and long reliever Blake Hawksworth served as a starter at Triple-A Memphis. Mitchell Boggs and P.J. Walters could conceivably be recalled from Memphis for a start.

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