Smile Politely

Cards Still Fighting Milwaukee; Time Running Out

It’s beginning to feel as if I’m saying the same damned thing every week, but once again, the Cardinals are still hanging in there. They’ve been either winning or splitting their series all week, just like they’re supposed to. The problem is, that really isn’t good enough anymore because time is running out, or at least beginning to run out.

What makes it even tougher is that even though they just took two out of three from the Braves, it wasn’t good enough. In almost any other year, it would be considered fine, but the Braves aren’t exactly stacked with talent this year and it’s really a situation where they needed to sweep. Splitting a two game series with the Pirates isn’t really anything to brag about either.

There’re still about thirty games left and that’s plenty to catch the Brewers, but you can’t give away games anymore. The thing is, we’ve already given up a ton of games this year and that sort of thing tends to bite a team in the ass. My favorite whipping boy, Jason Isringhausen, is gone for the year, maybe forever, so at least we’re holding leads again.

As far as catching the Brew Crew goes, this week will be a pretty good indicator as to whether or not such a thing is possible. We play them two more games this Tuesday and Wednesday. It’s Wellemeyer versus Sheets, then Wainwright versus Parra. There’s no way to sugarcoat it. The Cards need to win both of them. All hope probably still isn’t lost if they split, but once again, it’s just not quite good enough.

It’s a tall order, but it may just be doable. Wellemeyer has somehow reverted back to his early season form after an injury. It’s amazing what kind of year he’s had. He’s usually hitting the corners and his ball moves nicely. His biggest problem is making a few fat pitches two or three times a game. These generally leave the yard. Sadly, the Brewers are a pretty good team at getting balls to do just that.

Still, historically the Birds have hit Sheets pretty well. It would probably help matters if the bats came alive early in this game and put a little pressure on Milwaukee. I’m still waiting/hoping for their collapse and that might help precipitate it.

In the second game we would appear to have a better chance, but that may be deceiving. Wainwright looked very good coming back on Friday night from a freaky finger injury, but the Brewer’s batting order is a little tougher than the Braves and Adam will need to be a hell of a lot sharper to put them to bed. Once again, scoring a few runs early would also help.

I still don’t quite understand why scoring runs is so tough for us sometimes. Pujols appears to be on a tear. Even the balls he hits for outs are blazing off the bat the last week or so. Ludwick is also remaining steady. Throw in Glaus and Ankiel and that’s a fair amount of power. Schumacher is also quietly putting together a fine season. It’s more than enough offense to win. They just all need to make sure they show up ready to go every game.

Nothing would please me more than a sweep of the Brewers. It helps us in the wildcard and also, because I really dislike many of their players. It’s attainable, but for some reason, I just don’t see us taking both games. Once again, I hope the Cards prove me wrong.

More Articles