St. Louis Cardinals can learn from the Kansas City Royals


Who does this Royals team remind you of? If you’re thinking of the 2013 St. Louis Cardinals team, then you’re right. If you have watched this Royals team at all this postseason, you see that they don’t give up and that they know how to put hits together and really get to a pitcher by simply putting the ball in play.

If you watched the Cardinals play this postseason, they struggled to string hits together and get hits with runners in scoring position. In their short four game series with the Cubs, the Cardinals struggled with a .211/.255/.429 slash line.

Contrast that with the Royals postseason numbers of .268/.327/.440, and it is as good as it looks for the Royals. The difference here between the Royals and the Cardinals is that the Royals know their approach and utilize this approach at all times and never deviate. It’s almost as if they out Mabry the Cardinals. The Royals’ approach is to make the pitcher work and to attack with runners in scoring position, which is what the Cardinals’ approach has been recently.

This is evident by the Royals’ crazy numbers with runners in scoring position. In the 13 games the Royals have a slash of .340/.400/.437, very similar to their regular season numbers of .281/.347/.426. This shows that this is no fluke for this team. Watching MLB Network right now, you see them break down how this team does it.

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One of their best hitters is Eric Hosmer, he is a first-baseman with incredible contact ability and the ability to pop about 20 homers. With RISP, Hosmer changes his game a little bit and does whatever he can to make contact and drive in the runner. This shows in his .293/.383/.463 line in the regular season this past year. What about his postseason numbers you ask?  In 19 at-bats Hosmer has a line of .368/.348/.421, continuing his clutch hitting.

The Cardinals on the other hand, had really bad numbers with RISP this season. They were 27th in the league with a .242 average, 24th in the league with a .326 OBP, and next to last in the league with a horrible .356 slugging percentage. The Cardinals were also 27th with 343 strikeouts, not good. You can’t blame the ballpark for that awful line as the Royals play in just as spacious of a ballpark and finished in the top 10 on all three stats.

So, not only do the Cardinals need to have a better overall offense next season. They need to look to their in state rivals for help. In other words do what the Royals do and improve the contact and cut down on the strikeouts with RISP. Easier said than done, obviously. After the unbelievable numbers in 2013, everyone said “oh the numbers are random and unsustainable and we need more homers,” I will say I was one of them. However, what the Royals are showing is that maybe the Cardinals need to have more of an emphasis on contact, especially in clutch situations like these.

With an added emphasis on this, and a more talented team in 2016 look for this team to improve the offense dramatically, just as Chris Greene mentioned the other day.

What do you think, can the Cardinals learn from the Royals and improve next season? Let me know in the comments!

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