As this is his first Spring Training with the St. Louis Cardinals, John Lackey helped put together his pitching plan with the team. The results from his first start appear to confirm the veteran knows what he needs as he threw a perfect three innings in the Cardinals 1-0 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Monday.

Lackey needed only 37 pitches to retire all nine batters he faced–four by strikeout.

Marcus Hatley, Carlos Villanueva, Tim Cooney, Jordan Walden, and Trevor Rosenthal finished up on the combined shutout.

KOZMA CONTINUES TO SHINE

Even without his RBI single in the bottom of the 6th inning providing all of the offense for the Cardinals in their 1-0 win over Detroit, Pete Kozma is continuing to solidify his bid for a roster spot in 2015.

Kozma, who took over at third base in the 4th inning, made a nice defensive play to start a 5-4-3 double play in the 7th. He moved to short in the 8th, but the innings at the hot corner were the first of the spring for Kozma, who has spent the majority of time at shortstop (30 innings) but has also appeared at second and in both left and right field.

And of course there’s the emergency catcher drills as well.

“I’ve got the thumb-guard, just ready for whatever,” stated Pete on getting behind the plate.

The single raised his average to .400 (8-20) in the Grapefruit League and Kozma also showed no hesitancy to advance to the extra base on the play at home–another example of why his base-running has drawn the praise of Mike Matheny.

Kozma batting stance

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