Rasmus takes over Cards' leadoff spot

Rasmus takes over Cards' leadoff spot

ST. LOUIS -- Neither Skip Schumaker nor Colby Rasmus feels all that much enthusiasm for their respective new spots in the batting order, but neither is complaining.

With the Cardinals' offense somewhat stagnant, and Schumaker in a monthlong slump, manager Tony La Russa moved Schumaker out of the leadoff spot in his lineup and Rasmus into the No. 1 position. Schumaker, the club's primary leadoff man for the past two-plus seasons, hit seventh on Tuesday.

"When you don't do the job that you're supposed to do, this is what happens," Schumaker said. "I'm just fortunate enough to still be in the lineup and getting an opportunity. But that's the nature of the game. If you don't get the job done in the leadoff spot, someone else is going to have to do it."

Schumaker entered Tuesday's game batting .217 with a .302 on-base percentage. Rasmus, meanwhile, has emerged as more of a power threat this year than he was as a rookie, but he also sports a .430 on-base mark through the weekend.

"Colby's got a good on-base percentage," La Russa said. "He runs well. It still separates our left-handers. So I don't see that big a difference. I'm hoping he's not [trying to be] a power hitter. He's definitely one that hits less when he tries to be powerful."

Rasmus said he won't change a thing, but admitted that hitting at the top of the order is not his preference.

"I ain't going to change nothing," he said. "Just go up there, see the ball, hit the ball. Try to do damage.

"I can say I'd rather hit one than eight. Pretty much all throughout the Minor Leagues, they'd start me off at one. Start me off hitting leadoff, and then I'd usually end up hitting two or three. It's not really my favorite spot, but it [doesn't] really matter. Just going to try to hit the ball. Just try to get on base."