Now It looks as if the Cardinals have another pitcher problem. This time a more expensive commodity is at stake as Jake Westbrook has not quite lived up to the hype he built with the Cleveland Indians.
This season thus far, Jake Westbrook is 1-2 and with an ERA of 9.82. Thus far he has only pitched 18.1 innings, given up 30 hits and served up 20 earned runs. Now, this may just be me, but when you’re supposed to be one of a staffs better paid pitchers, you really can’t be a decent pitcher without your ERA being less than the salary you are given (Westbrook signed a 2 year, $16 million deal in the offseason. In reality, having an ERA under 8 is usually best anyways).
In an ideal world, Adam Wainwright would be back in the role of dual ace alongside Chris Carpenter, Kyle McClellan would be the permanent 5th starter, and the Cardinals could find a way to unload Westbrook for the much needed cap room to pursue Albert Pujols.
Westbrook was pulled in the 3rd inning today after just 68 pitches with 7 hits and 7 runs. It looks today as if Tony’s patience in the pitching game is becoming very thin and he knows for the most part we are quite stellar, there are just a few turds in the punch bowl.
Salas, Franklin, and Motte came in as relievers today. Combined they gave up 3 hits and just one run (HR allowed by Ryan Franklin in his new relief role, go figure).
Offensively, the day looked to be a wash early on as Albert hit his 5th HR in the 3rd to bring the score to 7-1. From there, the bullpen held their own and allowed our offense to slowly do its thing and do the very best to catch up. Colby hit a HR in the 5th, Ryan Theriot went 4 for 5 again, and we had many baserunners in the 6th but could only capitalize for 3 runs. The rest of the game, every inning we still seemed to threaten everytime with still no results and many people still left on base.
To say the Cardinals got as close as they did after Westbrook’s start was indeed surprising, I gave up right around the time Albert had his HR. At least we know now we have the pieces, they are really starting to get it together offensively. Now we just have two pitchers causing us trouble for the most part and if we can find ways to compensate around them the Cardinals can put themselves in a position to quite possibly be the best team in baseball.