Hi there! Sorry I haven’t written in a while. Life’s been a wonderful mix of busy and hectic recently. Thankfully for you who appreciate my inane posts about baseball statistics, I should have some more free time to post on a regular basis.
I’m gonna switch the format of this entry up a bit. Rather than go with a straightforward “who’s hot, who’s not” style, I’m gonna mix in news with a few tidbits from the last few weeks.
- The loss today drops the Cardinals a half game behind the Rangers for the best record in baseball, but the Cardinals still have the best record in the NL thanks to a strong last couple weeks. The Cardinals have gone 9-2 the last two weeks and sit at 23-13 overall, thanks to the best starting rotation in the majors (by a pretty decent longshot – more on this later).
- Those of you who were fortunate enough to attend Friday and/or Saturday’s games saw two of the best pitching performances in recent history. In fact, Friday night’s start by Shelby Miller, going from gamescore, actually ranks as THE best nine-inning performance in Cardinals history.
For those of you unfamiliar with gamescore, it’s a measurement to determine how effective a pitcher was. The score starts at 50 and then adds points for strikeouts, batters retired, etc. and subtracts points for hits, runs, walks, and such. Miller’s gamescore Friday night was a 98, outscoring every other Cardinals’ pitcher in history (for a 9-inning game, that is; other had higher gamescores, but pitched at least 10 innings). Yes, even Bob Gibson and Chris Carpenter.
- Not to be outdone, Adam Wainwright carried a perfect game into the fifth inning yesterday, and a no-hitter into the eighth. The 40 consecutive batters retired between the two of them tied a major league record, and the 50 consecutive batters to go without a hit fell one batter short of tying a major league record. Not too shabby.
Many people hate Mondays. I’m certainly not their biggest fan. I gotta admit, though, I’m looking forward to this coming Monday. Why, you ask?
Well, if you have to ask,
you can’t afford it you must not be a huge Cardinals fan. On Monday, April 1, the Cardinals kick off the 2013 season when they visit Arizona. In a flurry of activity, the Cardinals set their Opening Day roster today and announced several moves and signings this past week. I’ll do my best to provide a brief overture, but this may turn into a novel.
Starting Pitchers (2012 statistics shown)
RH Adam Wainwright – 14-13, 3.94 ERA, 3 CG, 2 SHO, 198.2 IP, 184 K, 52 BB, 1.248 WHIPLH Jaime Garcia – 7-7, 3.92 ERA, 0 CG, 0 SHO, 121.2 IP, 98 K, 30 BB, 1.364 WHIP
RH Lance Lynn – 18-7, 3.78 ERA, 0 CG, 0 SHO, 176 IP, 180 K, 64 BB, 1.318 WHIP
RH Jake Westbrook – 13-11, 3.97 ERA, 1 CG, 0 SHO, 106 K, 52 BB, 1.391 WHIP
RH Shelby Miller – 1-0, 1.32 ERA, 0 CG, 0 SHO, 16 K, 4 BB, 0.951 WHIP
Relatively speaking, the Cardinals have had it made at first base for most of the last past 15 years or so. Beginning with some Hulk named Mark McGwire, the team has been somewhat stacked at first. Even in the two years between McGwire’s retirement and Albert Pujols switching to first permanently, the team at least had some stability in the form of Tino Martinez.
When Pujols bolted last year for the greener pastures of higher property taxes and increased smog, the Cardinals turned to Allen Craig, who at the time had a grand total of seven major league games at the position (to be fair, Craig did have some experience at first in the minors). And all he did was slash .307/.354/.522 with 22 HR and 92 RBI. Had Craig not missed the first month, it’s likely he would have had closer to 25-27 HR and easily cleared the century mark in RBI. Craig has also played extensively in the corner spots in the outfield (remember, he caught the final out in Game 7 of the 2011 World Series).
Finally! It’s almost here!
No, not my resignation as a writer.
Tuesday, the Cardinals pitchers and catchers will officially report to Spring Training in Jupiter. Hard to believe it’s been almost four months since our beloved Redbirds were last playing.
While this has been a relatively quiet off-season for the team, there have been a few changes. I’ll start with the (relatively) smaller changes before I hit the bigger ones.
Hey! Hey, you!
My, it’s been while, hasn’t it? My apologies to both of you who read my writing.
Life’s been undergoing a bit of a paradigm shift for me recently, and as a result, I haven’t been able to write nearly as much as I used to. I started a new job at Savvis, and though I love it, the time slot I work means I don’t really do as many movie reviews as I’d like to, and the Cardinals not playing means, well, not nearly as much baseball to write about.
Fortunately, though, I got a little bit of free time, so I thought I’d post a quick update on the Cardinals and the off-season. I know some of you might actually have lives and don’t scour every baseball page hoping for an iota of news that might affect your favorite team.
I, however, have no such prohibitions, and am happy to report on any on-going items.
Justin Christian, OF
Ok, this move won’t really shake any underpants other than in the Christian household. Justin’s played bits of three seasons in the majors, spending last year with San Francisco, so I guess he technically won a World Series ring. His career stat line (.203/.255/.266, 0 HR, 12 RBI in 155 plate appearances) aren’t going to wow anyone. Likely this was a depth move for AAA, as he did have a solid season at Fresno (.343/.409/.508). Christian does have some local ties, as well; he played at SEMO and was signed by the Yankees off the River City roster back in 2004.