MILLER OKAYED FOR MOUND DUTY

> Shelby Miller skipped yesterday’s side session because of a tight back.  Impressions of this news range from the team’s laxed reaction to Straussian sensationalism, and while I certainly will never take a “because the team said so” approach to anything (especially injuries), I can’t come up with a motive for a cover-up.

Miller threw today, and will take to the mound tomorrow if he checks out today.

UPDATE: He checked out.

UPDATE: Langosch says the shoulder is “no cause for alarm“.

>> Rafael Furcal says it still hurts to throw and he’s only hitting from the right side.

> A couple nights ago, five more guys were tied to Biogenesis PEDs by ESPN.  (Side thought: ESPN is better at getting those records than Major League Baseball.)  The most notable player implicated is San Diego’s Everth Cabrera, who claims innocence and vowed to cooperate in an MLB investigation.

The other four players were Jordan NorbertoFernando MartinezFautino De Los Santos and Cesar Puello.  All four are clients of the ACES agency, which has an all-too-extensive history of clients tied to PED use and services Cardinals Allen CraigJason MotteRandy Choate and Ty Wigginton.

The ACES plight is so prevalent that David Wright, the agency’s biggest client and teammate of Puello, said yesterday, “I don’t care if they’re ACES clients, I don’t care if they’re whatever clients.  If you cheat, I hope you get caught and I hope you get punished.”

As the names keep coming out of Miami, I have to appreciate the Cardinals’ evasiveness or at least luck when it comes to known PED use.  Last year, only four minor leaguers were suspended; the lowest number of any organization.  There are certainly users from the Major League team on down, but they’ve done an impeccable job keeping their public noses clean since their strong representation in the Mitchell Report.

> Players’ Union leader Michael Weiner will talk with MLB about tweaking the new CBA to figure out this draft compensation thing.  The reason, of course, was because Adam LaRoche, Michael Bourn and Kyle Lohse had/are having way too hard a time finding jobs.

When Lohse turned down the Cardinals’ one-year, $13 million qualifying offer at the end of the season, it was presumed the obvious thing to do.  But if you gave Lohse that same option again today, I guarantee you he’d take it with Spring Training games starting tomorrow.

> Alex Gonzalez talked with Mike Matheny about converting to second base.

Given this news and the fact that they were willing to go overboard to pay 37 year-old Marco Scutaro, there’s no reason to believe anything the team says in regards to the confidence they have in Daniel Descalso and Matt Carpenter.

> Shocker: Adam Wainwright will start on Opening Day.

> That bridge ended up getting named after Stan Musial after all.  The guy who died building said bridge gets a section of I-70 downtown.

Nice job, Missouri senate.  I’m sure Stan would be proud.

> Nationals owner Mike Rizzo thanked the local baseball media for garnering support for the Stephen Strasburg shutdown.

> Surely after Miami’s disaster, taxpayers will ease up on the stadium contributions?

> Eh… I wouldn’t have done it.

> …But his photo day went better than Colby Rasmus‘.

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