Cardinals' Miles Mikolas is ready to "stick it" to the "checkbook" Dodgers

Miles Mikolas isn't backing down from the challenge the super team in Los Angeles poses.
Feb 15, 2024; Jupiter, FL, USA;  St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Miles Mikolas (39) warms-up
Feb 15, 2024; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Miles Mikolas (39) warms-up / Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Much has been made about the St. Louis Cardinals kicking off their 2024 campaign in Los Angeles as they face the World Series favorite Dodgers. For Miles Mikolas, it's an opportunity to "stick it" to them.

John Denton of tweeted out a quote from Mikolas on facing the Dodgers to begin the season, and Mikolas was not shy about his expectations for how that series should go.

I know some are going to laugh at a statement like that, but honestly, that's the exact mentality I want from every player on this Cardinal roster. They cannot control that ownership does not want to go out and make another splash to compete with teams like the Dodgers, but they can do everything within their power as a club to beat them when they face off.

The Cardinals need to get off to a strong start to the 2024 season but face a really tough schedule to begin the year. To make matters worse, they'll be without center fielder Tommy Edman and newly acquired reliever Keynan Middleton, and there's still a chance they'll be missing ace Sonny Gray and left fielder Lars Nootbaar as well.

Should Gray not be ready for Opening Day, Mikolas will likely get the start against the Dodgers, or if Gray does start, Mikolas will surely throw in the second or third game of that series.

Mikolas has looked strong in camp so far, posting a 2.25 ERA in camp thus far, including a six-inning outing against the Nationals on Saturday where he gave up two runs on seven hits. I was very low on Mikolas' chances to be an impact starter coming into this year, but he's looking more like his 2022 All-Star self than the guy who led baseball in hits allowed in 2023.

No one should expect an All-Star nod for Mikolas this year, but having him rebound as he has so far when games begin to matter would be huge for this rotation that carries so many question marks. Mikolas sounds ready to prove the doubters wrong, and that mentality seems to be shared amongst his teammates as well.