He took over after the St. Louis Cardinals dismissed their manager and now wears an interim tag but the time has come from this to be removed.
Mike Shildt is the acting or “interim” manager of the St. Louis Cardinals in the spot vacated by Mike Matheny. One could argue that a monkey throwing feces could have managed better than Matheny. That person would not be wrong but Shildt has done this and much more.
Mike Shildt has raised the caliber of the St. Louis Cardinals by using different players, adjusting the pitching, and working with his coaches in ways that Matheny never did. At this time, however, the club has made it clear that they intend to spend the season “looking” for a new manager but “not rushing it.”
This is prudent but, based on recent trends with the St. Louis Cardinals, the time has come to pull the trigger.
While rumors have spiraled that Joe Girardi would love to become the next manager of the St. Louis Cardinals, and while he would make a nice manager, the Cardinals do not need him. While the Cardinals should have hired Tito Francona when they had the chance, they don’t need him now.
Now, the St. Louis Cardinals need the man who has been in the organization for a while. Now, the St. Louis Cardinals need Mike Shildt.
This fact was made even more evident to me during Sunday’s game. The St. Louis Cardinals were one out away from a sweep of the Kansas City Royals. The sweep was a foregone conclusion with the score securely in the Cardinals’ favor at 8-2. The score board showed two outs; this meant one out remained.
A special note here: the Cards had already suffered three batsmen hit while at the plate at the hands of the Royals. None of the three seemed intentional but were nevertheless hit batsmen.
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Tyler Webb was in charge of the bottom of the ninth. With two outs (see how this has bothered me?), Webb hit what would have been the third out. No big deal, right? The Cardinals were leading by six runs. There was no reason for Webb to have it hit a batter.
In one of those moments that so often happens (too often happens), the home plate umpire made the game about him instead of the action on the field: he ejected Tyler Webb. Yadier Molina did his job and stood between the ump and Webb and was pleading the case when Shildt appeared at home plate.
Let’s stop right here. Matheny was known to be less-than-thrilled to come out of the dugout and even when he did he wasn’t one who would fight with passion. This was NOT the picture portrayed by Shildt on Sunday.
Shildt defended his players and with gusto. Two F-bombs and one bullsh*t later, and I’m ready for the club to drop the interim tag. This is the man I want leading our St. Louis Cardinals.
This protection of his players matched with the winning series under his belt have shown me that Shildt is the man the Cardinals have needed.
Do it, Mozeliak, do it. Make Shildt the manager for 2019 and beyond. Hell, give the man 5-7 years. We all would support this!