The quest for the St. Louis Cardinals to gain home field advantage resumes today at Busch Stadium. The start of the game was moved up to the afternoon since tonight’s forecast looks wet and wild.
Last night the Cards did what many (including this dude) doubted they would, they won the baseball’s premier division, the National League Central.
It does have a nice ring to it, and it sounds a tad odd. However, more than just the records excell in the NL Central, both the rosters and the managers also show superiority. Sure the AL East is strong, as usual, but the fact that they did not produce both wildcards says it all.
Atlanta has long been a fall rival of St. Louis. While back in September of 2006, Birds fans cheered for the Braves with a tomahawk chop that pushed the Redbirds back into the postseason.
Other than that insincere moment, STL has never supported ATL. From the Hawks moving to the Rams battling in the old NFC. We may love Dixie’s food, but we don’t love their sports.
The 1982 NLCS featured ex-Cardinals and lots of powder blue. The 1996 NLCS was an epic Redbirds collapse to the defending champion Braves. In the 2000 NLDS, St. Louis got revenge by sweeping Atlanta just like 82′.
Last year in 2012, during the first Wildcard play-in game , Braves fans were bitter and heaved bottles on the field after a bad call. That game was full of craziness including a monstrous Chipper Jones error and a huge Jason Motte save.
Today Atlanta and St. Louis are tied for the best record in the NL with 95 wins and 65 losses. Atlanta has Mike Minor(unpredictable) on the bump at home versus Ethan Martin (6.9 ERA). St. Louis has Adam Wainwright against the always familiar Edwin Jackson.
Most notably, Atlanta has been named the most sensitive and protective team in MLB. Twice in September some of ATL’s “good old boys” have taken serious offense to opposing players (young Hispanic All-Stars) watching their home runs. Tweets from Oakland’s pitching staff teased the Braves about their protection of the game which has led to benches clearing both times and revealed some differences in the America’s past-time.
The Dodgers are looming as a possible NLDS opponent as are the Bucs and Reds. After the next two games the future will be clear and the speculation can begin before Thursday/Friday night’s game 1.
Go Birdinals and Go Phillies!