I didn’t watch the game last night. I read the box score, and perused the post mortems on the internet, so I have a good idea of what went down. Not much to be happy about other than another typically terrific Wainwright performance, that was then spit on by his teammates. Those always irritate me more than anything else in baseball.
The Dodgers got an even better performance from their starter. They didn’t spit on it, they just behaved like the prima donnas that the rest of the baseball universe has come to expect. I know that stuff plays well in LA, the city that practices self-indulgence as an art form. The Cardinals don’t play that way, thankfully, though the way they do play, with the utmost professionalism, has been the subject of mockery and derision of late. It’s a crazy world we live in. I don’t like it much, but I am stuck with it.
I could spend time and words repeating myself about the disdain I feel for a society that views disrespecting others as a form of entertainment. I don’t happen to subscribe to the notion that players who frolic around the basepaths and gloat over the misfortune of their opponent is just “showing passion and fire ” and is “good for baseball “. Baseball doesn’t need that kind of help. But the Anti Unwritten Rules crowd would whine more stridently in their designer beer over any attempts to police that kind of behavior in the traditional manner.
So, rather than Lance Lynn putting a well placed pitch into Yasiel Puig’s back, how should the Cardinals handle it? I suggest they do it by winning the game tonight, and winning it handily. Give the Dodgers a taste of one of the beatdowns they have bestowed on other teams this season. They have the offensive capability to do it. They just need to find where they misplaced it. And while they are at it, they need to locate their defense as well. Losing a playoff game is bad enough. Losing a playoff game while playing like the Bad News Bears before Tatum O’Neill and Jackie Haley show up, is not remotely acceptable.
I want to see a much better performance out of the Redbirds tonight. The fans deserve it after what they witnessed last night. Re-focus and find what has served this team well all season and let the Dodgers do as they will. I’ve always said you can’t control what others do, you can only control how you respond to it. So respond in a manner that shows the world the Cardinals are in charge of their destiny and the rest will take care of itself.