Happy Easter, everyone … and here is today’s lineup

It’s expected to be a perfect 79 degrees in downtown Phoenix this afternoon, and the Chase Field roof is OPEN. It feels like a real ballpark for once instead of an airplane hangar. … Torre apparently has decided NOT to bat Juan Pierre ninth and is instead batting him eighth. Hitting him ninth would have made at least some sense — a fact Joe conceded when he was asked about it yesterday — because it would have meant the possibility of Pierre, Furcal and Hudson coming up in front of Manny in the later innings, allowing Manny to not only bat third and be assured of hitting in the first inning but also to become a sort of de facto cleanup hitter later in the game.

Furcal. SS
Hudson. 2B
Ramirez. LF
Loney. 1B
Martin. C
Ethier. RF
Blake. 3B
Pierre. CF
Wolf. LH

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  • Brooklyn Dodger

    I’m guessing that part of the decision to hit Pierre 8th is to provide Casey Blake with some protection. He’s less likely to be pitched around with Pierre behind him than the pitcher. Also, should Pierre get on base, he’s a lot easier for the pitcher to sacrifice over a base than most players. In fact, should he get on 1st and then steal 2nd, he can be sacrificed to 3rd. Finally, Wolf hitting 9th is not an automatic out.