Saturday, July 07, 2012

Quickly Looking At The Cardinals Halfway Through

We're a little past the midpoint of the baseball season, and the Cardinals are 44-40 as I type this. Which is a tad disappointing, considering how they started the season. I suppose it's more understandable when I consider the injuries to the rotation (Carpenter, Garcia) and various position players (Berkman, Jay, Craig, Matt, Carpenter, Schumaker I guess).

Still, they'd have a much better record if their bullpen had anyone worth a damn other than Mitch Boggs or Jason Motte. Every other reliever that's gotten any significant run has been awful this year. Scrabble, Salas, Sanchez, Marte, Romero (released), McClellan (injured). Some of those guys seem to have bad luck, but at a certain point you can't bitch about luck. The league doesn't award wins at the end of the season based on what your record "should" have been, so it really doesn't matter if the Cards' Pythagorean says they ought to be 49-35, which would put them comfortably in first place in the Central. They are 44-40, full stop. They may have a record more in line with their Pythagorean as the season goes on, but that won't change how they did up to this point.

Frankly, it's for the best I was engrossed in the NBA playoffs until the Finals. It kept me distracted from the Cards' terrible May, culminated by getting no-hit by the Mets. That was the moment where I got truly frustrated with the team, and didn't want to hear any more about injuries, bad luck, whatever. I've calmed down since then, largely by continuing to not pay as much attention. There are things about the Cards I find interesting, and things I find irritating, but by and large, I try to not let the ineptitude of their relief pitching rile me too much. It is annoying that guys whose job is to pitch maybe one inning, just one, can so easily torpedo a season just by being lousy. The starters can be good, the offense can be good, the defense can be, well, not terrible, but it won't matter if 80% of the bullpen is not worth a damn.