At the All-Star break, the Cardinals were 44-44 with a direction uncertain. So what do you think happened since then? And who's the MVP? And what chances do they have for taking this farther? Fire away with your questions and comments.
He still has a year left on his contract in Boston and is waiting to seehow the front office is restructured. I do not see him going to the Giants, who aren't going to be very good for a while. La Russa likes to win too much to stomach that at age 75 (next month).
I wouldn't think he would play until at least Friday. No rush. The divisional round of playoffs won't start until a week from Thursday.
You are correct. Neither Goldy, who has struck out too much, nor Ozuna has been dynamite with men in scoring position and, in fact, their averages in such spots mirror their overall season averages. In the next round, they will have to be better, notably Ozuna, despite his lofting that homer into the gale the other day, is in an awful slump.
Fowler has had many more good at-bats than his sub-.250 average would show. His being moved to the leadoff spot has been a big reason why what has happened has happened.
Probably the two home runs on the first two pitches offered up by Kimbrel to Molina and DeJong in the ninth inning on Saturday. Even though Kimbrel has been hurt and ineffective, back-to-back home runs on consecutive pitches rarely, if ever, has happened to him.
Maddon in Chicago, Kapler in Philadelphia, Hurdle in Pittsburgh, perhaps Callaway in New York, perhaps Gardenhire in Detroit, perhaps Servais in Seattle and, of course, Bochy. ,
Posey has fallen off to the level that he might need a couple of more prime seasons although he does have a handful of World Series rings. Molina would seem to have a better chance because he will rank high in many categories as a catcher, including hits, when he is done. Whenever that may be.
When the teams play 19 games against divisional foes, as they do now, 10 of them are in one place and nine in another, which means there is a four-game series in one or the other city every year. So, there are more than you might have thought.
I don't recall seeing any four-game sweep on the road where all the games were decided by one run _ whether it was good teams playing or bad teams playing.
That certainly is the question that should be asked. I have my doubts unless Ozuna and DeJong are going to be more consistent and unless Wong can play, which I'm sure he will try to do.
Martinez was already on. Despite his lackluster second half, he still is one of the top pinch hitters of all time and it sends a very bad message to the team to be leaving off players who have been with them all year. So, Wacha makes it, too, in my opinion.
Edman will have to start somewhere, but it doesn't have to be the same position every day. He doesn't mind moving around and his production doesn't seem to be affected. With a reconfigured outfield, presumably, he may not be needed as much there, so then, he can play some shortstop to give DeJong an occasional rest.. Edman is a better defender there than Munoz.
I recall it was very dark there late in the afternoon.
The answer, until I see Dylan Carlson more, is Lane Thomas, who projects to be a better hitter than Bader and would have been on the postseason roster had he not suffered a fractured wrist.
Not many teams match up with the Braves, who can throw Freeman, Acuna Jr., and Donaldson at you from a power standpoint. Atlanta is a better than average defensive team but the Cardinals have a clear edge in the bullpen. If they are close or ahead late, the Cardinals can win the series. But can they keep the Braves off the board enough to make that happen? The Atlanta offense gets more than does the Cardinals'.
Tyler Webb is a certainty on the post-season roster. Genesis Cabrera is an outside choice depending on the makeup of the other's club offense.
Carlos still says he wants to start and the Cardinals' management has been consistent in saying he will get that chance. That is why they signed to the five-year deal. If his arm is strong enough to pitch four days in a row, it should be strong enough for him to start next year. But you can see he likes the action of being the last man standing at the end of the game.
I hope Waino is coming back. It does appear as he will be pitching next Sunday, especially if the Cardinals have clinched, and he probably will have to answer that question more directly after the game. He surely has proven he still can pitch effectively.
Flaherty will pitch the first game unless he is needed to pitch a clincher this Sunday. I see Hudson as No. 2 and I haven't decided between Waino and Mikolas for No. 3 yet, with Mikolas' resurgence. I will say Mikolas at No. 3 because that is the order in which those four have been pitching lately, excluding Wacha, who will not be in the rotation.