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Holliday's day off his first of season

WASHINGTON -- In an effort to continue to rest his starting position players while the Cardinals trudge through a stretch of 20 games in 20 days, Manager Mike Matheny sat outfielder Matt Holliday on Sunday. Holliday had been the Cards' only position player to start each of the team's first 18 games.

On this road trip, Matheny had created days off for Yadier Molina, Matt Adams and Matt Carpenter.

"We talked about this a while back when the road trip started, knowing how long of a run this was going to be with everybody," Matheny said. "We kind of had today earmarked [for Holliday], and I think today should be a good one."

By choosing to sit Holliday on Sunday, the left fielder did not get to face Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg, against whom he was 4-for-6.

The move to unplug Holliday also necessitated some defensive realignment. Matheny shifted Allen Craig from right field to left, explaining that move by noting that Craig is actually more comfortable in left. That left right field for Jon Jay to handle, while Peter Bourjos started in center.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB.
Read More: St. Louis Cardinals, Matt Holliday