Friday, June 20, 2008

Apparently I'm technically challenged

I can't figure out how to get my post over at C70 at the bat to post. So here it is. I've emailed tech support there, hopefully he'll answer soon and I can do what I told Dan I'd do.

You Can't Win If You Don't Score - Cardinal70 Version

Well hello everyone. Perhaps some of you have perused my blog at one time or another; if not, I'm Mike, and I'll be minding the store while Dan takes some much deserved vacation time over the next week.

Continuing a running thought from over at the Stance, the Cardinals again managed one measly run and got swept out of Busch by the Royals, 4-1. KC scored as many runs in this game as they allowed St Louis in the series, and that's just not going to get the job done. Heroes and Goats for this game are pretty simple. For driving in the lone Cardinal Run, Rick Ankiel gets the nod as Hero; and the Anemic Offense is the Goat. I suppose I could saddle Brad Thompson or Chris Perez with the goat label, but since Brad came up on short notice and worked 5 solid innings, and since the Cardinals would still have lost 2-1 if Perez hadn't served up that gopher ball to Mark Teahen, it just didn't seem fair.

We all knew the offense would struggle without AP in the #3 slot. There's no way you can adequately fill the shoes of a future HOF. But to hit .154 against KC with RISP? To not get anyone to second today? Albert would have raised those figures a little bit, but it still points to some major problems surfacing offensively. The same Post-Dispatch article I linked to above points out the Cardinals aren't taking walks like they were at the beginning of the season. Viva El Birdos took it a step further, showing the Cardinals are a lot less disciplined at the plate since the calendar flipped over into May, a trend that has become worse recently (see lboros post from Thursday; that site is down as I write this at 11:18 PDT, so I don't have a link to it). You would think that plate discipline and patience would be things they really need to focus on now that the NL's second leading hitter is out of the lineup, as opposed to trying to do too much, which appears to be what they're doing.

One other thing: Bernie Miklasz suggests the Cardinals should utilize the speed they have on the roster while they struggle to score runs, as a way to generate some offense. It's a good suggestion. Brendan Ryan and Brian Barton are two guys worth plugging into the lineup to see what they can create; it's not as if second base has been a font of offensive prowess this season, and the OF has really cooled off recently (witness Ankiel's 2 RBI on the homestand as an example).

Because I'm obligated to disagree with at least one thing in every article/post Bernie writes, sitting Chris Duncan really isn't an option, as he's the first baseman. The two guys he suggests bringing up to help the offense wouldn't displace Chris at first.

We limp into Boston next. They have the best home record in the majors (28-7), and will send Wakefield, Dice-K, and Lester to the hill to face our boys. Might be a loooong weekend; keep your fingers crossed.

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