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Cardinals Start Fast
Posted By Gabriel Rodriguez On Apr 23 2010 @ 3:37 pm In St. Louis Cardinals | No Comments
Every game matters…sort of.
I guess that is mostly true in baseball. Let’s be honest, though, baseball has a long season and even the best teams typically win a little less than two thirds of their games.
The Cardinals have played five series so far this season.
They have won the opening game of each of them.
They have gone 2-1 in each of them as well. That’s a pretty fast start.
So what has the team in this position?
First off, offense. We all knew going into this season that the Cards were going to hit the ball. They have only legit threat to win the triple crown in the majors in Albert Pujols. Matt Holliday was brought in to protect Pujols in the line-up and is doing just that. But that was expected. Colby Rasmus and Ryan Ludwick are also mashing the ball, (Rasmus leads them team in slugging, Ludwick leads in batting average and on-base-percentage), which makes this line-up as dangerous as everyone thought it could be.
The real surprise has been in the pitching staff.
Again, it was expected that Adam Wainwright, with his Cy Young caliber stuff and Gold Glove fielding, would be great, and he has been. Chris Carpenter has also returned to his Cy Young finalist form. The pleasant surprise has been with no. 3 starter Brad Penny. He is 2-0 in his three starts (the Cards top three are 7-0 in 10 starts collectively) and is leading the team in ERA. He’s learned that he doesn’t have to reach back and throw flames, Rick Vaughn-style, with every pitch. He actually throwing with some movement now and the results are evident. Add 4th starter Jaime Garcia (1-0 in two starts with a .69 ERA) to this mix and you have quite a potent starting rotation.
I know it’s early, they haven’t even played 10% of the season yet, but things are looking good for the Cards for the season. So far they have won exactly two-thirds of their games. That puts them on pace to win 108 games. Now, I’m not suggesting they will win that many, but I am suggesting that they have the tools to stay at close to this pace and flirt with the century mark.
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