Who Is Your Choice For 2013 Cardinals MVP?

Click to vote at the bottom of the post!

Now that we’ve had  few days to deal with the disappointing end of the St. Louis Cardinals season in the World Series, it’s time to look at the big picture of 2013. A team doesn’t win 106 games from April through October without a a variety of key contributors. Some, of course, are more valuable than others.

Who was the Cardinals Most Valuable Player this year, taking into account both the regular season and postseason?

collage-2013 MVPA few obvious candidates, in alphabetical order, and a very brief look at their 2013 numbers.

Carlos Beltran: Led the team with 24 regular season home runs, hit .296/.339/.491 with 84 RBI. In October, had 15 RBI and hit .268/.388/.464.

Matt Carpenter: Had the most hits in the National League with 199, most doubles in MLB with 55 and most runs scored in MLB with 126 while overall hitting .318/.392/.481 and often being mentioned in the NL MVP conversation. In October, things changed considerably as he only hit .217/.263/.290 with three doubles and four RBI. However, he did hit .296 in the World Series.

Matt Holliday: One of four Cardinals to hit .300 or better in the regular season, he led the team in OPS with .879 and hit .300/.389/.490 with 22 homers and a team-high 94 RBI. In October he hit .246/.268/.507 overall and hit four homers with 10 RBI. He was the only Cardinal to homer during the World Series, as he hit two, and he led the team with five RBI in the Series.

Continue reading

Who’s Your Choice For Closer Now?

Click to vote at the bottom of the post!

First, let’s start with the positive: the Cardinals won, the Pirates lost, the division lead is now two with eight games remaining in the regular season.

Getting to that win … yeah.

screen shotNot exactly easy to say “all’s well that ends well” when Edward Mujica melted down yet again and turned a 6-4 Cardinals lead to 6-6 by allowing three hits, a walk and the game-tying runs — all while getting just one out (even though the box score “officially” shows John Axford with the blown save). Mujica’s September ERA (to follow up on what I wrote about yesterday) is now 9.45 and he’s blown three of his last five save chances.

After Carlos Beltran hit a sacrifice fly to put the Cards back on top in the 10th — off former Card Michael Blazek, who was traded for Axford and thus produced this odd notification on my phone once the game ended — it was Carlos Martinez who pitched the bottom of the inning and recorded a 1-2-3 save following a quick talking-to from Yadier Molina after going 2-0 to the first batter he faced.

That was excellent to see. Could he be the new closer? Today’s his 22nd birthday. That would be a nice gift.

Or is it be time for Trevor Rosenthal, who so many have been clamoring for all season?

There also is the option — gulp — of John Axford, who was Matheny’s choice once he removed Mujica.

What do you think? Vote below.

Maybe tonight’s game can be a little less drama-filled … then again, Lance Lynn is starting. He faces Yovani Gallardo starting at 6:05 p.m. Central Time.

Christine Coleman is the lead writer for Aaron Miles’ Fastball. Follow her on Twitter, @CColeman802, or email aaronmilesfastball@gmail.com. Also follow @AMilesFastball for the latest updates.