This Cardinals team, the 2018 version. is so average at best.
Recently, the Cardinals smacked the White Sox, one of the worst team in baseball, with lots of runs (14) in a game. That should happen. But the nest night the team is shutout out by the Sox. That shouldn’t happen.
Let’s look at anyone that has played in 70 games or more this season. Right now, as I type this, the team is 47-43 (90 games). Matt Carpenter has had a hot streak and still has a .262 average and 88 strikeouts. Jose Martinez has the most potent bat at the moment with 55 RBI’s and a .302 batting average. The other end of the scale shows Dexter Fowler batting .171 with a .268 OBP. Then Tommy Pham, the guy that passed up a very good contract from the Cardinals so that he could show the other 29 teams that he is worth more, he is batting .243 and has struck out 89 times. Kolten Wong flashes great leather but the bat is a weak sauce with a .218 average and only 21 runs batted in.
The point of all of this? The hitting coach is not getting the job done. That presents a problem as John Mabry holds that job and he is a very good personal friend of Cardinals manager Mike Matheny. Something has to shake out and if Matheny wants to go down with Mabry then that is his choice. It will go down.
As a team, the Cardinals are batting .245 which is just below the league average. When it comes to OBP, they are at .316 and again under the league average. The Cardinals have 126 doubles and that is last in the National League as the Braves lead with 190. The Cardinals have FIVE triples and are dead last in the major leagues. The Diamondbacks lead the NL with 31. However, the Cardinals love the long ball as the are above the league average (101) with 115 bombs.
In stolen bases, the league average is 45 and the Cardinals have 33 of them but have been caught stealing the second most with 22 times. Walks are at 295 with the league average at 315. One surprise this the Cardinals have struck out less than the league average and are 8th least. Intentional base on balls finds this team dead last with 13 of them and the average is 25. Teams aren’t scared of the Cardinals line-up.
Let’s gander at the team pitching. The Cardinals are fifth best in ERA at 3.44 with the average coming in at 4.05. They are next to last in team saves with 21 and one good note is they have given up the least number of home runs (80) in the league. Cardinal pitchers lead the league with 43 hit batters and fourth with 39 wild pitches.
Now for fielding. The St. Louis Cardinals have made more errors than any team in the National League with 75. The league average is 54. That ‘s unacceptable. As a team they have turned 75 double plays just under the average of 81.
What Can Be Done?
What are we going to do? The Cardinals have made the same mistakes for the previous three seasons. Nothing has changed. At Spring Training there were plenty of stories about how the additions of Jose Oquendo and Willie McGee was going to change the fortunes of this team. That hasn’t happened. The organization shuffled a few coaches to the field and back to the bench to shake things up. No change.
What’s the constant here? Same leadership in management and same people in control on the field. Will they have the moxie to make changes if the Cardinals continue on this free fall? That remains to be seen. But we know one thing, they are making money and touting Ballpark Village Phase II through the media constantly.
Those are my thoughts as of today.