St. Louis Cardinals: Opening Day Game Grades

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Apr 3, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina (4) is greeted by first baseman Matt Holliday (7) after Molina scored a run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the ninth inning at PNC Park. The Pirates won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 3, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina (4) is greeted by first baseman Matt Holliday (7) after Molina scored a run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the ninth inning at PNC Park. The Pirates won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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Apr 3, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright (50) pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the second inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 3, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright (50) pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the second inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Pitching and Defense

This is where the Cardinals have, and are going to have to continue to make their money. It’s becoming brutally clear that the club is all-in on run prevention, with less concern for the offensive woes that may come along.

That formula is fine, you know, so long as you are good at preventing runs.

Adam Wainwright and company gave the club a chance today, it just wasn’t enough. They didn’t pitch a shutout to bail out the offense, shocker.

Waino was good (not great) over his six innings yesterday.  He spent some time in the middle of the plate, but worked around a fair amount of walks and hits to keep his club in the game.

Seung-Hwan Oh was shaky in his debut, but got his zero in the seventh.

Maness got knocked around.

The defense was good, the highlight coming from Grichuk on that throw to double off Polanco at second base in the bottom of the 6th.

The simple fact is that Wainwright and Co. were outdone by Liriano and Co.

That’s going to happen over the course of a 162-game schedule. It’s understandable.

I’ll take Wainwright’s effort just about every time out, and I have to believe that the offense is going to show enough of a pulse to back up his performance most of the time.

Run Prevention Grades

Pitchers gameplan/execution: B (higher had Maness not struggled)

Defense: A-

Overall Performance: B+

Next: While it doesn’t really go with the theme of this piece, we have to talk about the training staff.

Next: All aboard the DL train

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