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LaRussa Made Washington Look Like a Future HOFer

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Ron Washington took plenty of heat around these parts of Wednesday's Game 1 loss for his managing of the batting lineup late in the game.

    And he wasn't immune to some of the same questions in Thursday's Game 2 victory, but he did nothing to sniff the questions that St. Louis Cardinals future Hall of Fame manager Tony LaRussa will be getting from the national media following his handling of his bullpen in the ninth inning on Thursday.

    Jason Motte, who is, but isn't the Cardinals closer (whatever that is supposed to mean), started the inning with the Cardinals up 1-0 after the Rangers bats had been silenced for the second straight game.

    Motte started the inning by sawing off Ian Kinsler, who reached on a bloop single then stole second base.

    Then Elvis Andrus lined a single to right field and advanced to second on the throw to put runners on second and third base with no outs and the gimpy Josh Hamilton and the slumping Michael Young up to bat.

    That's when LaRussa messed up.

    LaRussa pulled the hard-throwing Motte off the mound in favor of soft-tossing, ancient lefty Arthur Rhodes, who started the season with the Rangers but was deemed expendable when the Rangers acquired Koji Uehara and Mike Adams.

    What LaRussa should have done was put Hamilton on base, despite his horrible struggles with his groin injury, and then pitch to a struggling Young with the bags full and hope for a double play or a strikeout.

    The over-manager overmanaged on Thursday, and it might have cost his team the game. Who knows? Maybe the series.