I’m back and feeling quite refreshed after a weekend away and also quite excited that the game tonight is early enough that I can watch it live. It will be my first live Cardinal game this season and I couldn’t be happier about that.
I’ve looked at the scores for the games I missed over the weekend and read the recaps and watched the video highlights of the Cardinals games. And from all that here is my summary of various things from the games, in no particular order:
1) The Cardinal bats FINALLY got going. Obviously, we’re going to win games and obviously Pujols isn’t going to have a .072 average all season. But it’s excruiating waiting out the first slump of the season. Now that it’s over, hopefully the big swings and big at-bats will continue into the next series.
2) The Wainwright-Molina-Pujols DP off the bat of Brad Ausmus during the attempted suicide squeeze was of the best plays I’ve ever seen. Great heads up baseball all the way around.
3) Johan Santana is a machine. I want him to be a Cardinal.
4) Though I’m excited about the 10-1 over Houston, nobody’s talking about the baserunning mistakes. If the Cardinals had lost 2-1, everybody would be yelling about missed opportunities on the basepaths. That is not heads up baseball.
5) Every team now has at least one win and one loss.
6) Roy Oswalt continues to be one of the most dominating pitchers in the NL. At least for the Redbirds because they can certainly never figure him out. I hope we don’t see him again for awhile.
7) Lidge continues to be less and less of a closer and more and more of a setup man in Triple A somewhere. He can deny the Pujols homer = destruction all he wants, but the fact remains….baseball is a very mental sport. And now with everybody talking and focusing on the homer, he continues to allow runs to score until his ERA is currently an astonishing 16.20. Granted, the man hasn’t even pitched two complete innings yet and his shortstop booted an easy groundout that would have lessened the damage, but nevertheless….he better get his act together quick if the Astros ever want to have enough confidence to hand him the ball again. It also makes you think…..will Billy Wagner be affected? The runs off of him for some reason didn’t make the splashy headlines that the Pujols shot did, but the Cardinals touched Wager for quite a few runs in the NLCS. Wagner, "the sandman," whose ERA hasn’t been over 3.00 since 2000, saw it spike at 16.87 in the NLCS when he gave up 5 runs, including a homer to the Cards.
8) My 7th point was way too long.
9) I really hope that Kip Wells pitches like this all season. If he does, the 2007 season is looking up.
10) I hope that if Carp goes on the DL (which seems inevitable at this point), it’s a short stay. We’ve done without Carpenter for a little bit before, but a season ending injury would be devastating. Anybody else having nightmares of the 2004 World Series? Guarantee you that the Sox don’t sweep us, if Carp had been healthy.
11) I’m really tired of seeing Anthony Reyes face the hardest pitchers in the league. Last year, he constantly drew guys like Chris Capuano, Freddy Garcia, Andy Pettite, Roger Clemens, Greg Maddux, etc. And this last series against Roy Oswalt. I feel bad for the guy.
12) That’s all I can talk about for now because the game just started.
Looking for a sweep in Pittsburgh,