The Week That Could Be

After the initial disappointment on Friday of losing to the Cubs, the Cardinals regrouped and took the last two games of the series.  Sunday’s game was a nail biter to the end.  Despite a bounceback showing from Cardinal ace Adam Wainwright (following his worst start of the season against Tampa Bay), the Redbird offense didn’t give him much help.  A solo home run by Matt Holliday was the only scoring the team accomplished.  Once again the offense looked flat, as they have over and over again throughout this season.

The Cardinals are off today and start a three games series tomorrow in San Diego against the 46-58 Padres.  The vast spaces of Petco Park are always a challenge; it’s a whole lot of ground to cover for a less than stellar outfield defense (the Cardinals 2013 outfield of Holliday, Jay and Beltran/Craig was the third worst outfield defense in baseball).   For an offense, Petco is not a home run friendly venue.

With the Cardinals a measly 2 games back in the division, feasting upon the Padres is a must.  The Brewers start a series with the Tampa Bay Rays today; though the Rays lost yesterday against the Red Sox, they have been red hot in the month of July.  A good showing in San Diego (and the Brewers obliging us by losing to the Rays), will put the Cardinals in excellent position to take over first place when they come back to St. Louis this weekend to take on the Brewers.  One could venture to say that this week is a pivotal one for the outlook on the remainder of the season.

The Cardinals send Lance Lynn, Joe Kelly, and Shelby Miller to the mound against the Padres in this series.  Tyson Ross (9-10 2.65 ERA) , Jesse Hahn (6-2 2.12 ERA), and Odrisamer Despaigne (2-2 1.66 ERA) go for the Padres.  The pitching will be a challenge for the Cardinals, as no one on the team has seen either Hahn or Despaigne, and only a handful have a tiny amount of ABs against Ross (Peter Bourjos and Matt Carpenter each have one hit against Ross, Mark Ellis has two).

The Cardinals have been operating with a four man rotation for the last few series (multiple off days have permitted this).  That will have to come to an end this weekend, as a fifth starter will have to be employed for the Brewers series.  It could be Carlos Martinez, or Tyler Lyons or Marco Gonzales could be brought up from Memphis.  The trade deadline is on Thursday, and it is possible John Mozeliak could make a deal for a starting pitcher before this weekend.  However, based on some of his recent comments concerning the difficulties of making trades in this market, I really doubt that will be the case.  I believe A.J. Pierzynski may be the totality of the acquisitions made by the Cardinals in July.

However it all shakes out, the Cardinals have the opportunity this week to really turn things around for this season.  I hope they make the most of this opportunity.  After the lackluster season the Cardinals have had thus far, the fans deserve it.

 

Thank you for reading.

 

 

 

 

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1 Comment

  1. laura michaels

     /  July 28, 2014

    I will be at all three San Diego games cheering on our boys!

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    Reply

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