Archive for Wednesday, October 9, 2002

La Russa: Williams will start Game 2

October 9, 2002


— It will be 20 days between starts for Woody Williams when he pitches for the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 2 of the NL championship series against San Francisco.

Cardinals manager Tony La Russa made it official Tuesday when he announced the rest of his rotation. St. Louis right-hander Matt Morris will go against Kirk Rueter in tonight's opener, and after that it will be Williams, Chuck Finley and Andy Benes for the Cardinals.

Williams had to leave his last start, the NL Central-clinching victory against the Astros on Sept. 20, because of a troublesome pulled side muscle that has bothered him all season. He was scratched from the roster for the division series when he aborted a throwing session Oct. 1, a day before the series began.

"I just did my treatment and all my exercises and hoped I would be somehow, some way ready to go, and it's working out," Williams said. "I'm ready and I'm excited."

Rolen decision: The Cardinals are waiting until today's deadline before announcing whether third baseman Scott Rolen, who sprained his left shoulder in Game 2 of the division series last Thursday, will be on the roster.

But it's all but certain he won't be available.

"It's not impossible that we should decide to take a chance," manager Tony La Russa said.

Tino time: Cardinals first baseman Tino Martinez isn't torn up about the early playoff exit of his former team, the New York Yankees.

He said he felt bad only for shortstop Derek Jeter. Martinez said Jeter called him last night to wish him good luck.

"He hopes we win the World Series," Martinez said.

Dusty's fan club: Dusty Baker's early connection to Tony La Russa sure wasn't a fun one. When the San Francisco manager was still trying to establish himself as a young talent in the big leagues, La Russa got the last roster spot with the Atlanta Braves in 1971 and Baker got sent back to Triple-A.

During the years, they've become huge fans of each other.

"It means a lot to manage against Tony. He's one of the best in our era and one of the best in a long time," Baker said.

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