Postseason Previews: St. Louis Cardinals

Posted: September 30, 2013 in Uncategorized

cards

2013 Record: 97-65, First NL Central

Offense:
St. Louis, like the New York Yankees, seems to always find themselves in contention. This season was no different. Coming into the campaign, many questions were raised about the sustainability of their offense. Those questions were answered very early. Yadier Molina, Allen Craig, Matt Carpenter, and Carlos Beltran all greatly surpassed expectations in leading one of the most efficient offenses in the National League. The Cardinals did not have anyone drive in 100+ runs. But, they did possess eight players with 50 or more RBI; a statistic that led MLB.

Rotation: The Cardinals have, perhaps, the deepest rotation in the league with regards to future success. Adam Wainwright (31), Lance Lynn (26), Shelby Miller (22), and Joe Kelly (25) combined to win 59 games this season. Wainwright, Lynn, and Kelly all have postseason experience whilst Miller, the lone rookie of the bunch, possesses the finest “stuff.” When looking at the National League rotations, there is little doubt that the Cardinals are most equipped heading into October.

Bullpen:
When Jason Motte, the Cardinals’ closer in 2011-2012, went down with a season ending injury; it appeared as though the bullpen would become a weakness for St. Louis. Au contraire! Former Marlins’ reliever Edward Mujica instead became one of the more reliable late-inning arms in the game. Youngsters Trevor Rosenthal and Seth Maness have joined Mujica at the backend to create a trio of fantastic and lively arms for Mike Matheny to utilize this October.

Coaching: It has become obvious that Mike Matheny is one of the best young managers in the sport. That much is abundantly clear after yet another dazzling campaign for the second-year skipper. After losing in the NLCS in his first postseason, Matheny will be looking to replicate the success that his predecessor, Tony LaRussa found twice with the Cardinals.

Outlook:
Lose in NLDS, 2-3

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