St. Louis Cardinals: Opening Day Game Grades
By Landon Clapp
One run, five hits, 14 strikeouts, 10 left on base, zero extra base hits
14 strikeouts, 10 left on…
Don’t get me wrong, Francisco Liriano was very good yesterday, but we made him look so much better than he really was.
I mean, Liriano walked five guys yesterday. We had baserunners for virtually the entire afternoon, and scored just one time in the ninth inning.
What was the issue? 14 strikeouts. Zero extra base hits.
You absolutely cannot strikeout that many times, while hitting for absolutely no power, and expect to be able to score runs.
Most of Liriano’s 10 K’s were on chased pitches, as they pretty much always are when he throws. When pitches weren’t in the dirt, Randal Grichuk was taking two-seam fastballs over the inside corner for a similar result.
I get it, he’s tough. But I thought that our offensive approach was absolutely brutal, particularly in run scoring situations.
I just can’t get over the 14 strikeouts. If you aren’t going to hit for any power (as we hardly ever do), at least give yourself a chance by putting the ball in play.
It’s not like the Pirates were torching the ball all over the diamond. The difference was they only struck out five times. They gave themselves a chance.
Anything can happen on a ball put in play. The only result of a strikeout is a slow walk to the bench and a stagnating offense.
14 K’s are unacceptable, plain and simple. Liriano and that Pittsburgh staff is good, but nowhere near that good. You cannot compete striking out at that high of a clip, unless you hit bombs.
We don’t hit bombs.
Situational Execution: D-
Overall Performance: D-
Defense/pitching/run prevention efforts are next.
Next: Ya can't win if ya can't score...