I have been very busy at work the last few months and while I have kept up with baseball and the Cards, I have not had time to watch every game and or to even think about blogging. We were trying to get a product out the door on a deadline and now that it has been completed, I hope to spend a little more time watching Cardinal baseball and with my blog.
I realize that there is no way that I can recap everything I’ve missed talking about the last few months, so I’ll just go ahead and pick up where things are right now.
It’s really a great time to come back to the blog, I think, because there is so much happening in baseball right now. First, the Cardinals are starting to look like a team that maybe has a shot of contending. After being in 3rd place for quite sometime and well behind the Brew Crew and even the 2nd place Cubbies (gag), the Cardinals have recently come on strong. After taking 3 of 4 from the Brewers over the weekend, the Cardinals are now in pouncing distance of them at just 6 games back. What makes this even more interesting is the fact that the Redbirds still have 6 games left against the Crew and 8 games against the Cubs this year. So if the Cards can stay close, they definitely have a chance to help themselves the next couple of months. Not to mention the games between the Brewers and the Cubs, where someone has to lose.
This upcoming series is a big one. We will be playing the Pirates and we have to win a couple of games right here, especially with the Brewers playing the Mets. You figure with Glavine on the mound and the kind of ball the Mets have the ability to play, the Brewers are in for a tough series. So it’s an excellent time to gain some ground.
Right now, there is excitement seemingly everywhere in baseball, not just in St. Louis. 3 huge milestones will be chased tonight throughout the baseball world. A-Rod attempts to hit number 500 in New York and not only that, but when he accomplishes the feat, he will be the youngest player to ever reach that mark. I just hope they get a win and shave off a few more games in the AL East Race. I don’t want to see Boston win it.
Over in LA, the Giants/Dodgers rivalry will be heating up and even more so, with Barry one homer shy away from maybe the most hallowed record in baseball; the all-time home run record set by Hammerin’ Hank Aaron. It’s only a matter of time before it happens, but of course, knowing it’s that imminent can sometimes make a player press too hard at the plate, so we’ll see how he handles the pressure of pursuing the great Aaron and his record.
Last, but not least, Mets pitcher Tom Glavine sets his sights on 300 career wins. I’m rooting especially hard for this one because not only do I respect Glavine as a pitcher, a win for him means a loss for the Brewers. And that is something I am very much in favor of.
What a day this could be if all of these feats happened on the same night. Even if they don’t, they will all happen this season, barring injury, in a year where there has already been so many stories with Sosa and Thomas already hitting milestone home runs and Griffey not too far behind. Craig Biggio earned hit number 3000 and if Randy Johnson could have ever stayed healthy he would have had a chance at 300 wins as well. Definitely a historic year to say the least.
The last thing that makes this an interesting day is that the non-waiver trade deadline has now passed with a lot of the wheeling and dealing for the year done. Though there are a few GMs that seem to prefer trading after the deadline, waivers and all.
The Cardinals made very little noise, acquiring righty Joel Pineiro from Boston for cash and a minor league player to be named. Honestly, I don’t know much about this guy. I know that Boston had designated him for assignment, but by this point, I trust that if the Cardinals are interested in a pitcher, there is usually a good reason. Dave Duncan has worked a lot of miracles in that pitching staff, even with guys that were supposedly done, such as Jeff Weaver last year. And Pineiro doesn’t appear to be that far gone looking at his numbers. The best part about this is that the Cardinals didn’t get rid of a ton of players as I feared might be the case. That tells me that they haven’t given up fighting in the Central yet and that they plan on being a contender instead of just a seller at the deadline.
Other notable trades include Matt Morris coming to the Pirates. Once the ace of the Cardinal staff, Morris will be seeing the Cardinals a lot more in the NL Central than he did as a Giant. Morris was always a favorite of mine, a Cardinal that was hard to see go. I hope he does well in Pittsburgh.
Also, of note, Eric Gagne went to Boston. This deal surprised me a ton, considering he had a no-trade clause to the Sox. I really didn’t think he would waive this to setup for Papelbon. That makes the Sox downright frightening in the late innings.
Well, I supppose that is more than enough for my return blog. I will be back tomorrow where hopefully I will be saying that the Cardinals are just a mere five games away from first place.