Westbrook In, Ludwick Out in 3-Team Deal

The Cardinals have acquired righthanded starting pitcher Jake Westbrook and cash considerations from the Cleveland Indians in a three-team trade that sends right fielder Ryan Ludwick to the San Diego Padres. The Cardinals receive minor-league lefthander Nick Greenwood from the Padres.

I’m good with this. Jon Jay is looking like a great investment in the future of the Cardinals, which gives Ludwick less of a place with the team, and another pitcher isn’t a bad move.

Sounds like a good money deal, too.

(via St. Louis Post-Dispatch.)

First Family Ballgame

Abby’s Girl Scout troop was invited to group seats at a Cards game this past weekend, which included a walk around the warning track at the park. (The group seats were, as you would expect, very high up.) This is the first time any of the children were able to go to a game, and the first time Amanda and my parents had been to the new Busch Stadium.

MLB 10: The Show: First Impressions

I haven’t bought a baseball game in a few years—not since the 2K Sports series was still on top. But this year, after reading some fantastic reviews and seeing that last year’s game was well-loved by a lot of people, I decided to take a shot and grab MLB 10. I played a couple of innings tonight and here’s what I think so far:

  • The computer is a jerk of a pitcher, which is a good thing. It pitches around you, it mixes up pitch types, and it generally does what it can to keep you behind in the count. I like this. Even though I can’t currently hit very well, it’s a good challenge.
  • The animations and the environments are pretty good-looking. Busch looks pretty much like Busch. Fredbird looks pretty much like Fredbird. The players are as always hit or miss, but I think they look good more often than not.
  • The sound is incredible.
  • Umpires call different strike zones, and the game keeps a rotation of umpires, so you can “get used” to one umpire’s zone over another’s.
  • There are so many options here that I’m sure I’ll never even touch half of them. Custom crowd chants and heckles you can record yourself, custom walk-out music editing, league and player career options… a lot of stuff.
  • The built-in movie editor, while crappy in resolution, is a pretty neat way of showing people things you’ve done in-game. It even includes sound, which is better than the EA series. You can either export a specific play, or cut together a compilation of plays for a mini-highlight reel, which you can influence by setting camera change points and everything.

I didn’t play with the movie editor for very long, but here’s a couple of Carpenter strikeouts and a Holliday base hit:

Bonus tip: don’t keep the default camera angle. The “Offset” camera is much better for viewing the zone than the “Catcher” angle.

I’ve Made My Peace with St. Louis Baseball

You know, except for the 2006 World Series, when I was pretty sure I was going to explode from conflicting loyalties, I’ve pretty much settled with the fact that I’m now a fan of the St. Louis Cardinals. My two oldest children wear Cards hats. I have a stuffed Fredbird. It’s happened, and I have to deal with it.

I can reconcile this because my Detroit Tigers are in the opposite league.

Because of this fandom, which has grown from the fact that I’m raising my children in this fine metropolitan area, I have to say that I’m pretty excited with how the beginning of the baseball season is progressing. There is—of course—still room for the Cards to disappoint, but they’re looking good.

It is also the reason that this picture is one of my favorite baseball photos of all time:

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It literally never gets old. I thought of it completely spontaneously yesterday and felt I just had to share it with you all.