After the first couple months were disappointing, the St. Louis Cardinals are starting to pile up the wins and round into form.
We all have our opinions about this St. Louis Cardinals team and despite the rough start, my opinion has always been that this team was going to be a contender despite the numerous amounts of doubt facing this team. There is simply too much talent on this team to not be one of the top teams in the league and we are now starting to see this manifest on a daily basis.
One of the main concerns is that the Cardinals haven’t been able to have the same kind of success against the good teams that they have had against the bad teams. That is now something that can be put to rest, as the Cardinals have not only swept the Pirates but also won two out of three against the San Francisco Giants last weekend. This gives them a record of 5-1 in their last six games against the so-called “good teams”.
However, the most important part of this series with the Pirates is that the Cardinals starting rotation turned in three consecutive fantastic outings. Most importantly, among those three outings, we saw Carlos Martinez turn in another solid outing as he pitched a career-high 8 1/3 innings allowing just one run.
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This was on the heels of Adam Wainwright putting together yet another great game against the Ciniciinnatti Reds in the finale of that series. Wainwright, by the way, sports an ERA of 3.03 ERA and 29 strikeouts in his last five starts with good starts against Cubs, Nationals, and Giants.
So, not only is the offense continuing to score runs knock teams out of games, but the starting rotation is starting to be where we expected it to be. It is becoming the rotation that can win you games and be the difference maker in a series against tough opponents like the Pirates and Giants.
While there are a few players that could see an improvement in their play (looking at you Randal Grichuk), things are finally looking good for this team. With a couple tough AL teams coming to town this week it is important that this club is playing at all cylinders and they certainly seem to be doing just that.
We will undoubtedly know much more about this team after this tough stretch that they are about to endure. I for one think that this team is about to become a true contender and will potentially provide at least some pressure on the NL Central leading Chicago Cubs.
What are your thoughts on the Cardinals’ recent stretch of play? Is this simply a matter of a small sample size or is this team finally about to show us who they really are? Feel free to let us know your opinion in the comments!