Why Things are Looking Bleak for the Cardinals
One of the big eyesores that have been a problem for the Cardinals is simply the starting pitching. The lack of starting pitching depth and the inability to throw more than 6 innings put a huge burden on our bullpen. The Cardinals rank as the 3rd worst team in the league in opponent batting average, with opponents posting a .270 average against the Cardinals. Many analysts and fans had questioned the Cardinals' rotation, and we can see why based on their performance so far this season.
If the Cardinals refuse to make any trade deadline moves and stick with the current rotation, I don't think they can afford to do so. The high averages that teams are putting up against the Cardinals indicate that the rotation is not sufficient enough. In order for the Cardinals to have a chance at contending, they should target pitchers such as Dylan Cease, Shane Bieber, and many others at the deadline. The bottom line is that the Cardinals simply don't have an ace in their pitching staff, and in order to win, they need that ace.
Dug Our Own Grave
The Cardinals may have simply dug their own grave at the beginning of the season with the absolutely putrid start. In order to come back from such a start, we would need an 11-game winning streak just to reach .500 again. Another problem that the Cardinals face is the new MLB schedule, which features fewer games against division teams. This makes it much harder to gain ground and makes these division games even more important.
I believe the sweep by the Pirates needs to serve as an absolute wake-up call to the Cardinals. Being 8.0 games back in the division and last in the NL is not something that many Cardinals fans and players could have expected this far into the season. I think changes need to be made in order for the Cardinals to escape the quicksand that is slowly consuming their season. Whether these changes involve management or players, I believe it's time for something to be done in order to turn this Cardinals season around for the better.