The Cardinals Continue To Struggle


The Cardinals have had their share of ups and downs this season.

The offense has been a major boost the entire season. Starting pitching has been key in most cases for success. The bullpen had a few bright spots but mostly a downer. Aside from Theriot’s 13 errors and the very rare 6 Albert Pujols has compiled has already compiled, the defense has looked better than I thought it would.

We had a slow start to the season originally going 2-6 in the first 8 games played. After that they enjoyed a nice stint of 36-20 baseball until June 10th when they went to Milwaukee. We lost the next seven being swept by the Brewers and Nationals in the process before taking 2 of 3 from the Royals.

Sunday of course was the day we lost Pujols to an untimely wrist fracture after Wilson Betemit collided with his outstretched arm running down the first baseline. They have always said Albert was a bit of a maverick playing the first baseline without regard for himself personally and Father’s Day he paid the price that goes along with it.

Since Albert left last Sundays game the Cardinals have gone 1-5 to the Phillies and were swept by the Toronto Blue Jays.

So what is the problem we are currently facing here? We have blamed pitching all season, and rightfully so, but now our bats just aren’t getting as hot either.

As of now, the Cardinals rank offensively:
* 5th in runs – 369
* 2nd in batting average – .269
* 3rd in on base percentage – .341
* 7th in slugging percentage – .411

Pitching….ya….we’re in the bottom half in most categories so for the sake of everyone’s blood pressure we will leave that out of the discussion.

For a minute I thought the road trip was doing this to them. Houston 6/7-6/9 to Milwaukee 6/10-6/12 and Washington from 6/14-6/16. I thought maybe fatigue happens and this will all turn itself over. We dropped the first to Kansas City, understandable. We came back to win the next two, ok it’s coming back.

Now the Albert injury occurs and it’s almost like they are forgetting how to play the game they were so greatly excelling at just a month prior.

When Albert was batting in the low .200s the team still found a way around it to win games. Berkman and Holliday were killing it and now the teams season long motto of just score more than the opposing team isn’t working too well in their favor. Our greatest hope now is we can just get the starter through a strong complete game without having to call to the pen.

Is the motivation gone? Is there no longer incentive to winning baseball in St. Louis? Was Albert really that big of a piece that everyone falls apart when he is gone?

Last I checked this game was played with 9 offensive and defensive individuals at a given time from both sides.