Saturday, July 19, 2008

we like our team

"If there's a better middle of the lineup in the National League right now, I'd be hard pressed to name it." 

Mark Grace, who called the game for Fox today, also had nice things to say about Molina, Miles, the second-base position in general, Tony's management skills, and Dave Duncan's success with pitchers. I like Mark Grace. 

Pujols went three for four with four RBIs, but still no home runs. I guess it's hard to complain about his production when he's getting it done so nicely every day. Glaus and Ankiel have been getting it done, as well, and did you know that Molina is hitting .306? This team deserves some good things to happen. 

Earlier this year the Cards were easily defeated by bad starting pitching. They were having trouble coming back from deficits--even one or two runs--and just generally not able to score runs late in games no matter who was in the lead. But lately--today, as a matter of fact--that hasn't been a problem. Twice in this series already the Redbirds have come back from behind to take the lead, and won both games. We're getting help from everyone right now, and the only real weak spot in the lineup is the pitcher's spot--the way it should be. 

Today, as in past starts, Wellemeyer was struggling early on. He gave up five runs in the first two innings (with a little help from his defense), but then buckled down and cruised through the next 4-1/3 with only minimal difficulty. He even picked up a single to start off the fifth trying to help his own cause (and scored on Albert's double). Earlier this year I would have already written it off as a loss, but today--maybe it was the weather, maybe it was the opposition, or maybe it was the fact that we're playing better--the team picked up Todd and gave him a much needed and anticipated eighth win. 

To borrow a line from Jim Hayes, the Cardinals are a pretty good ball club. 

Jaime García will get his first big league start tomorrow in the final game with the Padres. His plan? "I'm just going to try to go out there and do my thing. I'm not going to do too much or change the stuff [or] try to do something different." He's going up against Cha Seung Baek who was just recently added to the Padres' starting rotation after being traded from Seattle. Jaime's a lefty who looked pretty good in his first ML appearance--he threw two scoreless innings at Pittsburgh--on July 11. 

Doctor's reports on Mulder show that there's nothing more surgeons can do for him. The plan is to let him rest and see what happens.