Of course, that was the real Padres team that had the low swing percentage. Not the El Paso team that was playing. Many of the walks were issued by second- and third-tier Cardinals pitchers who are not here anymore or will not be by the end of the week. Still, no excuses. This is the big leagues and the Cardinals are last in the majors at 4.63 walks per nine innings.
The bench will have to be addressed at some point. The Cardinals have too many sub .200 hitters on it, meaning all but Knizner, who is barely above .200. The club certainly doesn't offer much firepower off the bench in the late innings, but it hasn't been noticed much yet because, until San Diego, the Cardinals have been ahead a lot in the late innings. They haven't needed that key pinch hit much until last night. There isn't much at Memphis except Rondon and Nogowski.
I think you've answered your question but the solution should be offered in positive terms by the staff in pointing out the benefits of throwing strike one rather than trying to avoid walking hitters.
I would certainly agree in Edman's case, although the club is off today and Thursday before starting another 17 games in 17 days stretch. Edman will need some rest then and perhaps Carlson, too, but as you've seen, the Cardinals aren't exactly brimming with top-of-the-line bench players.
The Dodgers were a better option for Albert because they already had Pollock and Bellinger on IL, soon to be joined by Seager. Also, Dodgers are one of few teams whose first baseman (Muncy) also plays second. Goldschmidt does not do that here. Albert wouldn't have received that many chances to play here. He did not see himself as just a pinch hitter yet. That doesn't get him much closer to 700 home runs. Carpenter and Williams aren't tearing it up off the bench although each has three homers, The Cardinals ultimately will have to bring in somebody from outside to help the bench.
I go by the old saying, "You are who you record says you are." And does your "questionable core" include Arenado, Flaherty and Reyes? That's a pretty good foundation of hitter, starting pitcher and closer, I would say.
We can analyze this all we want but the fact of the matter is that this will look different when control artist Mikolas, among others, returns this week. I will say that umpiring has been more inconsistent behind the plate than I've seen it be for a few years.
I am in favor or robo umps when they have robo players. They're part of the human element of the game.
On one hand, they're playing with fire. Nineteen walks in 21 innings are a lot. But Reyes has given up only eight hits and none of those walks has turned into three-run homers. He's still getting used to this job. Imagine when he becomes more comfortable.
Mostly won't. A lot of times he is hitting with men on base where the possibility of a three-run homer means more than a bunt single. Leading off an inning, though, I would recommend it highly, and that might keep the defense a little more honest.
I think they have to count on Mikolas to some extent. He's been throwing the ball well for some time now. Kim's major issue has been an inability to get past five innings. But he still hasn't lost in the majors and both his ERA and Gant's are outstanding. Martinez was pitching very well until he turned his ankle, so he might be able to regain that form, too. And Wainwright has been both bad and good. But I understand your point. The club needs one more consistent, durable starter besides Flaherty.
How do you think Mike Maddux feels? But, as pointed out, the cast of characters will change by four by the end of the week.
The medical staffs do not/are not allowed to/ comment on pitchers' conditions. I think Hicks always has been more of a short-armer. I do not think that many smooth, effortless pitchers can throw 102 miles an hour, so there is always going to be stress and torque for Hicks. Tune in in July to see what happens next.
The Brewers' staff has some imposing weapons. But who is saying Yelich is going to recapture MVP form? He didn't last year and his back hasn't allowed him to do that this year either. Hitters with back histories are tricky propositions. But if Yelich and Hiura come back and hit, then the Brewers' lineup will take on a different look than the powder puff crew they put out there against the Cardinals.
Yes, but ball four was just a "bit outside." Those El Paso guys should have been harder to walk.
Knizner will catch once a week and has done well with Martinez and Flaherty, so I would have him catch either but be careful not to assign a "personal" catcher to anybody.
I'm sure it probably has happened but the Cardinals needn't go too far with anybody this week because they have a rested bullpen with an off day today and one coming on Thursday. You can mark Gant down for three or four, though.
I would put Helsley, the club's hardest thrower now that Hicks is out, in that "stuff" category. And Gant's stuff is good, except the opposition doesn't chase it very often.