A much improved May for the Cardinals could lead to a massive start to the summer months. Their last two series against the Guardians and Royals raise concerns about their readiness for the rest of summer.
The Cardinals turned things around dramatically in May, going 15-13. This was much better after a disastrous April in which they were 10-19.
But the Memorial Day weekend did not go well for the team. The Cardinals went 1-2 against the Guardians and 1-1 against the Royals. After a two-and-a-half-week stretch in which the Cardinals seemed to turn things around for the better, the team looked sluggish, as if they were playing on fumes.
After 19 straight games, it's understandable. Somehow, the Cardinals got two consecutive days off before heading to Pittsburgh for a weekend set starting Friday. The way this team has been struggling, it would seem the Cardinals need more than two days off.
Hopefully, the two days off will bring about some changes for the team. Nothing too drastic. The team should decide how they want to proceed with their rotation. Will they keep a six-man rotation or move to a five-man rotation? Will Steven Matz be transferred to the bullpen to make way for Matthew Liberatore to solidify his rotation spot?
Do the Cardinals need to have three catchers on the active roster? Willson Contreras has earned the everyday catching duties, with Andrew Knizer easily sliding into the backup role. Tres Barrera is taking a roster spot that could go to someone more deserving of the slot. Jordan Walker has earned a shot at returning to St. Louis.
Luken Baker has been doing so well at AAA Memphis that it's unfathomable that the team couldn't make a spot for him. It would have been interesting to see if the Cardinals would have tried to get Baker some experience in the outfield. Baker, unfortunately, is only experienced as a first baseman and designated hitter. Baker would be a different backup to Goldschmidt and could provide power as a designated hitter for the Cardinals. It would be exciting to have his bat in the Cardinals lineup, especially at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.