The St. Louis Cardinals were victorious in their first visit to Wrigley Stadium defeating the Chicago Cubs behind dominant pitching and successful hitting.
The St. Louis Cardinals rode into Wrigley Stadium after an unplanned off-day thanks to weather on the coat tails of Adam Wainwright who find the confines in Chicago a welcome place for his pitching. Last night’s game was no different as Wainwright dominated in the cold weather where Tyler Chatwood struggled.
Wainwright’s success came in spite of the weather as his pitching is more off-speed-dominant than fastball-dominant. Where Waino could slip a slider or break off a curve in the frigged temperatures, Chatwood’s fastball command suffered. Both of these things are attributable to grip ability.
Adam picked up his first win on the young season facing off against the assumed leaders of the NL-Central. His record now sits at 1-2. He collected the win through five innings of 93-pitch baseball. Of his 93 pitches, 50 were thrown for strikes. In his five innings, Waino surrendered four hits, one run, four walks, and five strikeouts. His ERA now sits at 3.45.
On the other side of things, Chatwood pitched only 4.2 innings of 97 pitches (50 for strikes). He surrendered two runs on only one hit while awarding seven walks and seven strikeouts. His ERA now sits at 4.60.
On the offensive side of things, the St. Louis Cardinals recorded 34 at-bats in the winning contest against the Cubs. In these, the St. Louis Cardinals managed only seven hits to a frighteningly high 14 strikeouts. Paul DeJong takes the cake in regard to Ks as he recorded four himself (and one home run so there’s still that too).
The K-to-hit issue is one that the St. Louis Cardinals need to solve. While they managed to right the ship in last night’s contest, when the Cubs are on (which they didn’t seem to be last night), then allowing yourself to strikeout fourteen times will not itself guarantee a victory.
Another glaring issue with regard to the St. Louis Cardinals in spite of their win last night was the number of runners left on base. Remember that I noted that Chatwood gifted the Cardinals seven walks. These walks, however, were often left stranded. In fact, the St. Louis Cardinals left a staggering 24 runners on base.
Taking the blame for these high numbers are the aforementioned DeJong (5 LOB), Marcell Ozuna (4), Dexter Fowler (3), Tommy Pham (3), and Jose Martinez (3). These are too many of the big name guys on the squad to not see caution here.
On the positive side of things, Matt Carpenter finally showed up for the St. Louis Cardinals going 2-for-4 with a double and three RBI. The two times he didn’t record a hit, he struck out, so he was just keeping with 2018 tradition (I guess). Of all of these things, it was really good to see Carpenter look more relaxed at the plate. I’m sure the hits help take a load off of his shoulders.
Some other remarks:
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- Kolten Wong continues to concern me. He didn’t start in Tuesday’s contest and- in fact- took only one plate appearance drawing a walk (better than a strikeout).
- Harrison Bader continues to earn the right to remain with the big boys with his 1-for-1 pinch hitting appearance.
- Greg Holland is simply not ready. Holland desperately needs to be sent to Memphis to get things worked out (I talked about this last night on the podcast which you can hear here if you missed it).
- Dominic Leone looked good and showed that he has great stuff to appear out of the pen.
- Bud Norris was able to record his first 5-out save and honestly looks like a bonafide closer. I’m glad since I had urged that the St. Louis Cardinals pick him up back during the spring. I like being right about something (if it will only last).
- Last but not least by any measure, Jordan Hicks was nothing short of miraculous. His stuff has so much fire on it that he himself was steaming from the cold as he walked off after making several Cubs batters look foolish with his plus-100 MPH arm.
I had a great time watching last night’s game and WAS looking forward to day baseball today. The weather in Chicago has other plans and MLB has postponed today’s game. Stay tuned for any updates as we learn them regarding the makeup, etc.
Did you catch the St. Louis Cardinals’ victory on Tuesday night? Let me know your thoughts on the contest on Twitter. Thanks for reading!