Great turnout: When Russ Springer broached the subject of “Strikeouts for Troops” program, founded by Barry Zito, to his fellow Cardinals, he expected a positive response, but he was taken aback by what he actually heard. A total of 12 St. Louis teammates agreed to participate in the program, which benefits wounded soldiers being treated at military hospitals.
“With the bullpen in Houston last year, we did it,” Springer said. “I saw Barry Zito when [the Giants] played us in St. Louis, and I told him I’d just mention it around our club. Maybe three or four guys would do it with me this year. And we ended up with 12 guys. That just shows the type of guys we have in this clubhouse.
“It’s a great cause. The military is one of the most honorable jobs you can have. It’s nice to be able to give something back to them.”
Pitchers pledge money to the organization based on every strikeout they record, while hitters donate based on their hits, home runs and/or RBIs. The Cardinals who pledged to participate are Springer, Adam Wainwright, Braden Looper, Ryan Franklin, Randy Flores, Chris Carpenter, Jason Isringhausen, Albert Pujols, Gary Bennett, Scott Rolen, Skip Schumaker and David Eckstein.