Five Second Half Concerns Necessary for the St. Louis Cardinals to Address

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Jul 8, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals manager

Mike Matheny

(left) argues with home plate umpire Pat Hoberg after catcher

Yadier Molina

was ejected in the sixth inning against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Entering this week’s All Star Break with a Major League leading 56-33 record, the St. Louis Cardinals are starting to learn that nothing simply comes easy with being the best. Not only did St. Louis slide into the break winning only 5 of 13 games in July, but division rival Pittsburgh Pirates has gained enough ground in the NL Central to move within 2.5 games of the Cardinals’ lead.

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Although the Cardinals have appeared in the postseason seven times in the last decade, baseball provides evidence that quick starters could crack under second half pressure, as shown by the Oakland Athletics and Milwaukee Brewers last year. Currently on pace for their winningest season since 2004, the Cardinals should focus on addressing five concerns to avoid sudden setbacks as baseball resumes on Friday.