Say It Ain’t So! So Long Freese

That collective gasp you heard Friday afternoon was reaction to the highly anticipated news that 2011 World Series MVP David Freese was traded.

Freese was traded to the LA Angels of Anaheim … or whatever they go by now … along with disappointing reliever Fernando Salas for OFer Peter Bourjos and minor league prospect, OF Randal Grichuk.

As much as I love Freese, I think the Cardinals got the best end of this deal. A top prospect  in Grichuk and a speedy, good hitting, young outfielder in Bourjos. Freese gets a fresh start. And he gets to be teammates with that one guy that used to play first base for the Cardinals. What’s his name! And Salas. Yeah. He gets a clean slate with a new team.

Now to say good bye to him, I will share a few of my favorite pictures of Freese!


Freese Continue reading

The Dreaded “One Bad Inning” Strikes Again

“One bad inning … one bad inning … one bad inning and a 3-6-1…”

Sorry. I keep having this nightmare about the Cardinals starters losing games because of one bad inning. Last night’s dream included a bases-loaded, inning-ending, Cardinal-rally-killing 3-6-1 double play, to make matters worse.

Oh … wait, that wasn’t just a dream? Well. That’s disappointing. I guess that means we should take a closer look at reality. As the first chapter in the Pujols vs. the Cardinals saga played out, the storyline quickly shifted to the struggles and the questions about how to get them right. It wasn’t all bad … but a 5-1 loss is going to be mostly bad. Let’s play a round of “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.”

good, bad, uglyThe Good

Yes, there was still good to be found in last night’s loss.

If you’re keeping track (be honest, who isn’t?), That One Guy Who Used To Play First Base was hitless on the night, and was part of a classic strike-’em-out, throw-’em-out double play to end the first inning. That play never gets old!

If you can ignore the score for a minute, you’ll noticed that there was some great pitching throughout the night. Even Lance Lynn, who is in the midst of a vaguely familiar pre-All-Star-break slide himself, pitched five great innings. Outside of the “one bad inning,” he tossed a three-hit, six-strikeout shutout. He was followed by Michael Blazek who has been as impressive as any rookie we’ve seen this year. He mowed through the top of the order in the seventh, and didn’t so much as bat an eye Albert’s way when he stepped to the plate. Fly out, ground out, ground out, and he was done. It was beautiful.

Continue reading

The Cardinals Bird’s Eye View: First Time In Anaheim

Hello, Anaheim! Disneyland, the Mighty Ducks, the Rally Monkey … oh, and That Guy Who Used to Play First Base.

Yes, the time is finally here — the Cardinals are facing Albert. A series preview is below, straight from the latest edition of The Bird’s Eye View e-newsletter published by the United Cardinal Bloggers (with this one written by me). If you don’t yet subscribe to The Bird’s Eye View, click here — it’s quick and simple and you can stay well informed!

Birds Eye View Header

St. Louis Cardinals (49-32) at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (39-43)
July 2-4
Angel Stadium of Anaheim

So, the Cardinals are visiting the Angels for the first time ever – though obviously that’s not the real story of this series. No, of course, it’s the Cardinals facing That Guy Who Used to Play First Base, Albert Pujols, for the first time. Much already has been written, much already has been said, much more will be written over these next couple days, much more will be said both during the game broadcasts and elsewhere – you don’t need anything more right here. You already have your own thoughts.

How We Got Here
The Cardinals look for a better month ahead in July than June, when they went 14-14. They’ve lost six of their last eight games and have gone 2-3 on the current three-city road trip. Tonight officially begins the second half of the season for the Cardinals as they play game number 82. They’re 49-32 thus far and in second place in the National League Central, two games behind the Pittsburgh Pirates. They have the second-best record in the majors.

Continue reading