Maybe Flaherty's start against the Milwaukee Brewers was the turning point for him, but for now, he remains one of the most frustrating Cardinals to watch right now.
It truly is shocking how far from grace Flaherty has fallen; not only on the mound but in the dugout and in the media as well.
The 27-year-old righty has shown time and time again that when he's healthy, he is capable of being one of the best-starting pitchers in the league. Unfortunately, he hasn't turned in a full season of starts since 2018 and 2019 when he made 28 and 33 starts, respectively. Since then, it's been a battle for him to stay on the mound.
Before Monday's start, Flaherty had made eight starts and they weren't been pretty. Across 39.1 innings of work, he has a 6.18 ERA, 5.66 FIP, and 67 ERA+. Along the way, he had his fair share of run-ins with the media, including a recent one when reporters asked him about his fastball velocity.
"The next time someone asks me about that", he said, "I'm just not going to answer it. I base my velocity off of what the game calls for. Y'all keep making a big deal out of it and I'm tired of it, it's so ridiculous. If you need to ask about this, you don't understand the art of pitching."
The irony of this statement is that Flaherty has an obvious confidence in his fastball velocity, but he must not share that sentiment when it comes to his command, because these comments were made right after a five-walk, three-strikeout performance.
When it comes to this once-promising hurler, Cardinals Nation seems to be ready to move on. He can't stay healthy and he is obviously not prepared to be a team player and would rather complain to the media than contribute to turnings this around. He is a free agent at season's end and is likely making the last appearances of his Cardinals career.