The perfect lineup (with 1 subtraction)

My fellow Cardinals bloggers and I complain on Twitter night after night Scan0004about manager Mike Matheny’s constant lineup changes.  The lineup is never the same from one night to the next.  Even the casual fan can see the lack of results that this constant changing produces.  But last night, it appeared that Mike spun the wheels on the lineup machine and finally hit the right jackpot.  Here was the lineup for last night’s game:

Carpenter 1B

Gyorko 2B

Moss LF

Piscotty RF

Molina C

Peralta 3B

Grichuk CF

G. Garcia SS

Martinez P

And lo and behold, Mike is using this same lineup in tonight’s game as well, with Waino pitching.  See how easy that was?   Carpenter celebrated being back in the leadoff spot last night by hitting a home run.  Stephen Piscotty and Randall Grichuk hit home runs too, and the Cardinals beat the Mets 8-1.  It was a fun game and even though I was at Bible study, I stealthily looked at my AtBat app to see how the game was going.  Yadi getting caught trying to steal third, however – no, Yadi, don’t do that anymore, or I will have to tweet at your brother Bengie to get on you about that.

I think this lineup should be on the field every night for the rest of the season, and even into the playoffs, if these Cards should get that far.  The only subtraction that I would make is when Aledmys Diaz returns from the disabled list, he would go in Garcia’s spot, and of course, the pitcher varies every game.

Garcia, Matt Adams, and Kolten Wong could come off the bench to pinch hit or spell one of the regular infielders if they need a night off or get hurt (God forbid – the disabled list has been overcrowded this season).  Matt Holliday and Jeremy Hazelbaker could do the same for the outfielders.  Tommy Pham – the jury’s still out on him.

A couple of random thoughts: Could Jaime Garcia just be released now instead of the end of the season when his option is up?  It’s bad enough that you don’t know whether you’re going to get Good Jaime or Bad Jaime when it’s his turn in the rotation.  Lately, however, only Bad Jaime has shown up to pitch.  Alex Reyes has shown that he’s more than ready to be a starter in the show.  Maybe I’m being selfish, but since my son and I will be going to the game on Sunday (which is Jaime’s next start), it would be really great to see Alex’s debut as a starter.

And why, with the exception of Martinez, are our pitchers not ready to pitch in the first inning?  It never fails that the other team starts scoring in the first inning.  The Cards have to start playing catch up already in the bottom of the first.  Are the pitchers not getting enough throwing time before the games?  Or are they getting too much throwing time?  Could the pitchers not be mentally ready to go in the first inning? That appears to be something that Derek Lilliquist needs to work on with them. This problem needs to be solved ASAP.

On Saturday, August 27,  Chris Carpenter, Joe Torre, Sam Breadon and Terry Moore will be inducted in the Cardinals Hall of Fame.  The ceremony starts at 2 PM at Fox Sports Midwest Live in Ballpark Village.  The doors open at 11 AM, so get there early to wait in line. Last year, my son and I didn’t get there until 12 noon and we had to share a table with some other folks. I told him we needed to get there earlier.  One of these days, he’ll learn to listen to me.  However, if you can’t make it, Fox Sports Midwest will show the ceremony on Sunday, August 28 at 11:30 a.m.  If you’re at the ceremony, find me and say hi – I always love to meet folks who read my blog.

That’s all for now! Thanks for reading and see you next time!

Diane

Homestand Highlights – April 29-May 8

Home Sweet Home.2jpgAfter a long West Coast trip, the Cardinals are back home at Busch Stadium for a nice, long homestand, and they will host the Nationals, the Phillies, and the Pirates. Hopefully, the late game last night in the Arizona desert will not affect our guys for this evening’s game. There is a lot going on in this homestand, including some great promotional giveaways, so let’s get started!

HOMESTAND HIGHLIGHTS (Friday, April 29—Sunday, May 8, 2016)

Green Week, Bobblehead & Replica Ring Giveaways and Mother’s Day Highlight the Second Homestand of the Season 

ST. LOUIS, Mo., April 29, 2016 – The Cardinals are back at Busch for the first of two 10-game homestands this season—their longest of the season—which kicks off with a three-game series with the Washington Nationals (April 29-May 1), continues with a four-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies (May 2-5) and concludes with a three-game series versus division rival Pittsburgh Pirates (May 6-8). The homestand is highlighted by annual Green Week festivities, a Trevor Rosenthal bobblehead and a replica 1946 World Series Championship ring giveaway, three Theme Nights and Mother’s Day celebration.

Friday, April 29, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:15 p.m.

  •  Adult Zip-Up Hooded Sweatshirt Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans, ages 16 and older, will receive a fleece zip-up hooded sweatshirt.

hoodie

  • Cardinals 2016 Hall of Fame Induction Announcement: The Cardinals 2016 Hall of Fame induction class will be revealed on FOX Sports Midwest tonight during a 30-minute pregame television special at 6:00 p.m. CT.  The 2016 Cardinals Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony will take place on Saturday, August 27. 

The winners are Sam Breadon (organization selection), Terry Moore (Veterans’ Committee), Chris Carpenter and Joe Torre (fan selections).

  • Green Week Activity – Shoe Recycling: The Cardinals, in partnership with Shoeman Water Projects, will collect shoes at Busch Stadium gates before the game.  Fans are asked to clean out their closets of any unwanted, gently-used shoes, tie or band them together and drop them in the designated shoe collection bins.  Shoeman Water Projects creates clean drinking water for those in need by selling shoes to exporters for resale and then using the money generated from those sales to purchase well-drilling rigs and water purification systems in developing countries (#4AGreenerGame).  For more information about Green Week, visit cardinals.com/greenweek.
  •  Cardinals Museum Artifact Spotlight: Every Friday home game, the Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum will highlight artifacts in the collection not currently on display during a pregame presentation inside the Museum.  Today’s featured items will include Joe Medwick’s 1937 Triple Crown.  For more information or to purchase tickets to the museum, visit cardinals.com/museum (#CardsMuseum).
  • Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visitcardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  • Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Fans have the unique opportunity to bid on exclusive autographed Cardinals memorabilia at the game.  The auction is a great way for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items while helping support the programs that Cardinals Care provides to youth in the community.  Auction tables are located at Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club.
  • MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.
  • Race To The Plate: At every Friday home game, fans will enjoy the Missouri Farmers Care: Race To The Plate—a mascot race featuring Captain Cornelius, Bessie the Cow and Simon the Soybean.  A new mascot will debut later in the season as well.  Join the conversation on how today’s food is grown and raised atMissouriFarmersCare.com (#GoFarmTeam).

Saturday, April 30, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (1:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 11:15 a.m.

  •  Trevor Rosenthal Bobblehead Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans, ages 16 and older, will receive a Trevor Rosenthal bobblehead with sound chip, presented by The Hartford.

rosie

  • Saturday Signings at the Museum: Former Cardinals catcher Glenn Brummer will be on hand to sign autographs at the Cardinals Museum from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  Saturday Signings is a new program held exclusively in the Cardinals Museum before each Saturday home game during the 2016 season where fans can get an autograph from a former Cardinals player with valid admission to the Museum.  In addition to having a valid admission to the museum, fans must have an autograph line ticket, which are free and will be distributed on the day of each Saturday signing.  Fans can visit cardinals.com/museum for the full schedule and additional details.
  • Green Week Activity – Shoe Recycling: See above (Friday, April 29) for details.
  • Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visitcardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  • MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.

 Sunday, May 1, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (1:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 11:15 a.m. This is also the United Cardinals Bloggers’ blogger event day.

  • Randal Grichuk Kids Bat Promotional Giveaway: All kids, ages 15 and younger, entering with a ticket will receive a 28-inch Randal Grichuk bat, courtesy of Rawlings.

kids_bat_200x800

  • Kids Free Ticket Voucher: All ticketed-fans, ages 15 and younger, receive a free ticket voucher for a 2016 home game courtesy of Ritz.
  • Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sunday: Starting two hours prior to the game, bring the entire family to Ford Plaza for games, prizes and free North Star ice cream (while supplies last).
  • Green Week Activity – Shoe Recycling: See above (Friday, April 29) for details.
  • Green Week Activity Volunteer Recognition: During pregame ceremonies, the Cardinals will honor an outstanding Green Team volunteer.  During Green Week, and all season long, the St. Louis Cardinals Knight FM Green Team volunteers walk down the aisles of the seating bowl in-between innings and collect recyclables from fans while promoting recycling at Busch Stadium.  In exchange for their services, they are able to watch the game in standing room only sections of Busch Stadium.  For more information, visit cardinals.com/green (#4AGreenerGame).
  • Home Run Against Hunger Food Drive: The Cardinals, in partnership with Missouri Farm Bureau Insurance and Feeding Missouri, are hosting a food drive in the Ballpark Village parking lot before today’s contest from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  Fans who bring a non-perishable donation will receive a voucher for two tickets to an upcoming Cardinals game.
  • St. Louis Blues Themed Batting Practice Jerseys Auction:  Online auctions for 31 autographed Blues-themed batting practice jerseys/sweaters worn by Cardinal players prior to the club’s inaugural Blues Theme Night on September 21, 2015 ends tonight at 11:59 p.m.  Proceeds from the online jersey auction will benefit Cardinals Care.  Go to cardinals.com/community to bid.
  • Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visitcardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  • MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.

 Monday, May 2, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Philadelphia Phillies (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:45 p.m.

  • Boy/Girl Scouts Night Theme Tickets: The St. Louis Cardinals invite all Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and their families to enjoy Scout Night at the ballpark.  This is the second of three planned Scouts Nights for the 2016 season.  For just $14, each scout receives a ticket to the game as well as a voucher which can be exchanged for a Cardinals scout patch.  Fans must present the voucher in order to receive this promotional item.  For more info, or to purchase tickets, visit cardinals.com/theme (#CardsTheme).

Boy Scouts Patch Girl Scouts Patch

  • Green Week Activity – Shoe Recycling: See above (Friday, April 29) for details.
  • Green Week Activity – Operation Food Search Presentation: In a ceremony prior to the game, Operation Food Search will recognize the Cardinals and the team’s concessionaire, Delaware North Sportservice.  Together, the Cardinals and Delaware North Companies diverted nearly 78,000 pounds of unused food from concessions stands in Busch Stadium to Operation Food Search since 2010, which reduced the amount of waste going to landfills.  When food decomposes in landfills, it becomes a source of greenhouse gas emissions.  The Cardinals are exceeding their food recovery goals, which results in decreasing greenhouse gas emissions and slowing climate change while contributing to Operation Food Search’s efforts in feeding 200,000 of our neighbors in need  (#4AGreenerGame).
  • Live From UMB Champions Club:  FOX Sports Midwest will broadcast this evening’s game on television from the UMB Champions Club.
  • MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.

 Tuesday, May 3, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Philadelphia Phillies (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:45 p.m.  My son and I will be at this game, thanks to the Papa John’s $6.00 tickets.

  •  Jeff Suppan Budweiser Bash Theme Night: Fans who purchase this special Bud Bash Theme Ticket receive a voucher for a limited edition Jeff Suppan mini bobblehead as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the 2006 World Series Champion Cardinals.  VIP ticket-holders will also have access to a pregame autograph session with Jeff Suppan.  Fans must present the voucher in order to receive this promotional item.  For more info, or to purchase general tickets, visit cardinals.com/theme (#BudBash).  

Suppan

  • Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Fans have the unique opportunity to bid on exclusive autographed Cardinals memorabilia at the game.  The auction is a great way for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items while helping support the programs that Cardinals Care provides to youth in the community.  Auction tables are located at Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club.

 Wednesday, May 4, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Philadelphia Phillies (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:45 p.m.

  • Tote Bag Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans will receive a reusable Cardinals grocery/tote bag, compliments of MLB Network.

tote_200x244

  • College Night Theme Tickets: The St. Louis Cardinals invite students, faculty and staff of local colleges and universities to the second and final College Night of the season.  Fans who purchase the $20 Right/Left Field loge theme night ticket, receive an exclusive, limited edition Cardinals lightweight hoodie.  Fans must present the special theme night voucher in order to receive this promotional item.  For more info, or to purchase tickets, visit cardinals.com/theme (#CardsTheme).

college_night_tank_600x338_00sla0ix_nslmp5ar

  • Cardinals Care Spring Grant Ceremony: In an afternoon ceremony, Cardinals Care will distribute more than $130,000 to 64 area nonprofit groups that support local kids.  A Cardinals player, executives and Fredbird will all take part in the afternoon event (#CardsCare).
  • Saint Louis Football Club: Members of United Soccer League’s Saint Louis FC and “Mr. Soccer” Bill McDermott will be recognized on the field prior to the start of the game.
  • Battle at Busch: 105.7 The Point and the Cardinals welcome back the Battle at Busch concert series.  The 2016 schedule features 18 local bands over the course of six nights, at six different Cardinals home games in Ford Plaza.  Tonight’s battle features In the Arms of Machines, Hobo Empire and Shark Dad.  Gate 6 will open at 5:15 p.m. for the event.  Performances begin at 5:30 p.m. with each act given 20 minutes to perform.  Each band will be judged on a point system by Mozingo Music and 105.7 The Point.  The top four scoring bands of the summer will be invited back to play on September 28th in the Battle at Busch finals for the grand prize package.  Tickets are available for $10.57 to each Battle at Busch game by going to cardinals.com/battleatbusch.
  • Pregame Pom/Cheer/Dance Performance: Prior to the game, groups from Meghan Torno School of Irish Dance, Dancers On Tour, Flipside Gymnastics, H and F Cheer, and Vineland Dragonettes/Dragon Dudes will perform in the Riverview Corner (behind Section 432) beginning at 5:50 p.m.

 Thursday, May 5, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Philadelphia Phillies (12:45 p.m.)

Gates open at 11:15 a.m.

  •  Charity Haircuts in the Plaza sponsored by Great Clips: During the game, fans can root on the Cardinals and shape up their roots with a visit to Ford Plaza for Great Clips’ Charity Haircuts.  For a $10 donation, Great Clips – who sponsors the event every weekday afternoon game during the season – will cut your hair and donate all proceeds to Cardinals Care. 

Friday, May 6, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:15 p.m.

  • Replica 1946 World Series Championship Ring Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans, ages 16 and older, will receive a wearable 1946 World Series Championship replica ring.

1946_ws_replica_ring_100

  • Academy Sports + Outdoors Autograph Night: Get free autographs from current and former Cardinals players, courtesy of Academy Sports + Outdoors.  Two current Cardinals players (TBD) will sign 100 autographs inside Ford Plaza for fans 15 years old and younger from 5:45-6:15.  Former Cardinals Danny Cox and Tom Lawless will sign autographs for fans of all ages from 6:15-7:00.  *Players subject to change*
  • Cardinals Museum Artifact Spotlight: Every Friday home game, the Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum will highlight artifacts in the collection not currently on display during a pregame presentation inside the Museum.  Today’s featured items will relate to the 1946 World Series including Stan Musial’s Sporting News Player of the Year award.  For more information or to purchase tickets to the museum, visit cardinals.com/museum (#CardsMuseum).
  • Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visit cardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  • Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Fans have the unique opportunity to bid on exclusive autographed Cardinals memorabilia at the game.  The auction is a great way for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items while helping support the programs that Cardinals Care provides to youth in the community.  Auction tables are located at Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club.
  • Race To The Plate: Every Friday night, fans will enjoy the Missouri Farmers Care: Race To The Plate—a mascot race featuring Captain Cornelius, Bessie the Cow and Simon the Soybean.  A new mascot will debut later in the season as well.  Join the conversation on how today’s food is grown and raised at MissouriFarmersCare.com(#GoFarmTeam).

Saturday, May 7, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (1:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 11:15 a.m.

  • Adult Replica Mike Shannon Jersey Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans, ages 16 and older, will receive a 1966 Mike Shannon replica jersey, courtesy of Goodwill.

mike_shannon_jersey_200x169

  • Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visit cardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  •  MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.

Sunday, May 8, 2016 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (1:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 11:15 a.m.

  • Adult Performance T-Shirt Promotional Giveaway: The first 30,000 ticketed fans, ages 16 and older, will receive a Cardinals performance t-shirt with pink accent colors in honor of Mother’s Day, presented by Power of the Pink!

adult_performance_tshirt_200x272

  • Kids Free Ticket Voucher: All ticketed-fans, ages 15 and younger, receive a free ticket voucher for a 2016 home game courtesy of Ritz.

 

  • Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sunday: Starting two hours prior to the game, bring the entire family to Ford Plaza for games, prizes and free North Star ice cream (while supplies last).
  •  Special Mother’s Day Uniforms: For the first time, the Cardinals and MLB will celebrate Mother’s Day with specially designed uniforms that incorporate pink into the Cardinals’ regular logos, with caps highlighted by a dark grey crown and brim.  In honor of Mother’s Day, MLB will donate its licensed uniform royalties to the Susan G. Komen and Stand Up to Cancer charities.

MD Jersey  MD Cap

  • Honorary Bat Girl: As part of MLB’s Honorary Bat Girl Program, the Cardinals will recognize Christina Sego, a breast cancer survivor, with an on-field ceremony and honorary first pitch before the game.  Ms. Sego was nominated by her son, Jordan, who described how she has been affected by her diagnosis and her commitment to battling the disease.
  •  Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: Fans, ages 18 and older, may play the Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle by going to any of the seven ticket kiosk locations throughout the stadium from the time gates open until the middle of the 7th inning.  One lucky fan will receive 50 percent of the gross proceeds from the game’s raffle ticket donations, and the other half will benefit Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation that helps children.  For more info, past winning raffle numbers and kiosk locations, visit cardinals.com/5050 (#Raffle4Kids).
  •  MLBPAA Auction: The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association will conduct a baseball-themed silent auction inside Gate 1 (Section 137), Gate 3, UMB Champions Club and the Cardinals Club from the time gates open through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the Players Alumni Association, a non-profit group that strives to preserve the game of baseball while supporting a variety of charities.

This afternoon, I attended the The Cardinals Way at Cardinals Nation presentation, at which Dan McLaughlin interviewed Bill DeWitt, Sr., John Mozeliak, and Howard Megdal, author of The Cardinals Way (which was reviewed in my last blog post) about the contents of the book.  It was an enjoyable and entertaining presentation.  Howard signed my copy of his book, mentioned that he read my blog and thanked me for my nice review.  That was so encouraging!  There were Cardinals Insider members taping the presentation, so you may be able to see it on Cardinals Insider soon.

Sunday is the annual United Cardinals Bloggers blogger event at Busch Stadium, and I’ll post all the details in my next blog post.  If you’ll be at tomorrow’s game and/or have nothing to do tomorrow night, there will be a UCB get-together tomorrow night at Cardinals Nation and you’re welcome to join us for some Cardinals conversation.

That’s all for now! Thanks for reading and see you next time!

Diane

And the nominees are –

Cards Hall of FameIn yesterday’s post, I mentioned that Bill DeWitt, III had announced the 2016 nominees for the Cardinals Hall of Fame during his speech on the main stage yesterday morning and I alluded that there would be a post with the nominees soon. I didn’t think I’d be getting the information so soon, however.

So without further ado, here are the nominees for the 2016 Cardinals Hall of Fame:

2016 CARDINALS HALL OF FAME NOMINEES ANNOUNCED

FAN VOTING BEGINS Friday, March 11th on cardinals.com

Fans to Select Two Players for August Induction from a List of Eight Former Cardinals Greats

ST. LOUIS, January 19, 2016 Chris Carpenter, Keith Hernandez, Jason Isringhausen, Mark McGwire, Matt Morris, Edgar Renteria, Scott Rolen and Joe Torre were revealed yesterday as the eight players nominated for possible induction into the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame. The eight modern ballot nominees selected by a “Red Ribbon” committee of Cardinals baseball experts through a secret ballot process will appear on the Cardinals Hall of Fame ballot online at cardinals.com/HOF presented by Edward Jones (#CardsHOF). Voting commences Friday, March 11th on cardinals.com. The two players with the most fan votes after voting concludes on Wednesday, April 20th will be inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame this August.

The St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame was established as a way to recognize the exceptional careers and significant achievements of the greatest players in Cardinals history. To be eligible, players must have played for the Cardinals for at least three seasons and must be retired as a player from Major League Baseball for at least three years. The eligible pool of players is divided into two categories: modern players and veteran players. If a player retired more than 40 years prior to the induction year, he is classified as a veteran player.

In addition to nominating modern players for fan balloting, the “Red Ribbon” committee of Cardinals baseball experts also elected a veteran player for induction using a secret ballot process. Independent of this process, the Cardinals organization may also opt to induct an individual who was an important figure in Cardinals history such as a coach, broadcaster or member of the front office. The induction class will be announced later this spring after fan balloting concludes. The formal enshrinement ceremony will take place on Saturday, August 27th during the 2016 Cardinals Hall of Fame Induction Weekend.

Each member of the Cardinals Hall of Fame will be permanently enshrined in the Cardinals Hall of Fame Gallery presented by Edward Jones located on the second floor of Cardinals Nation in Ballpark Village, just outside the entrance to the team’s museum. The Hall of Fame Gallery is free and open to the public. The plaques that adorn the gallery are produced by Mathews International, the company that also produces the plaques for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.

Following is a description of each nominee’s career as a Cardinal:

Chris Carpenter (#CarpenterHOF)

2005 Cy Young award, 95-44 W-L, 3.07 ERA

Chris Carpenter played nine seasons with the Cardinals and was selected as a National League All Star three times: 2005, 2006 and 2010. He made eighteen starts for St. Louis during the postseason, including a start in Game 3 of the 2006 World Series vs. Detroit pitching eight shutout innings, allowing no runs on three hits and striking out six. The game that solidifies Carpenter into Cardinals fans hearts may be Game 5 of the 2011 Division Series vs. Philadelphia when he pitched a complete-game, three-hit shutout, clinching the Division Series on the way to the team’s eleventh World Championship. He was the National League Cy Young award winner in 2005 after a 21-5 season, and National League Comeback Player of the year in 2009. Carpenter’s .683 winning pct. ranks second on the Cardinals franchise All-Time list and his 1085 strikeouts rank fourth all time. He is also the Cardinals All-Time postseason wins leader with 10 and in innings pitched (108.0).

 Keith Hernandez (#HernandezHOF)

1979 N.L. Co-MVP, .299 AVG, 265 2B, 81 HR, 595 RBI, 662 R

Keith Hernandez played ten seasons with the Cardinals, winning six straight Gold Gloves from 1978-1983 at first base. He was a co-MVP in 1979, batting a league leading .344 with 11 HR and 105 RBI. The two-time All-Star was a member of the 1982 World Championship team and batted .299 that season with 94 RBI.

Jason Isringhausen (#IsringhausenHOF)

217 Saves, 2.98 ERA

Jason Isringhausen spent seven seasons with the Cardinals. During his time with the team, the Cardinals won the Central Division in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006 with World Series appearances in 2004 and 2006, winning the World Series in 2006. He registered a National League-leading 47 saves in 2004, tying the franchise record which Lee Smith set, until Trevor Rosenthal broke the record in 2015. A two-time All-Star (2002 and 2005), “Izzy” still holds the franchise record for saves with 217, and is sixth with 401 appearances with St. Louis.

 Mark McGwire (#McGwireHOF)

220 HR, 473 RBI, 1.111 OPS

Mark McGwire finished his playing career in 2001 with St. Louis after joining the club via trade on July 31, 1997. In 1998, McGwire captured the World’s attention with the “Race for the Record,” breaking Major League Baseball’s single-season home run record of 61 set by Roger Maris with 70 homers. He blasted 220 career home runs with the Cardinals ranking sixth in franchise history, leading the Majors in home runs in both 1998 and 1999 (65), the top two season totals in Cardinals history. He set the Cardinals single season walk mark with 162 in 1998 and had back-to-back seasons of 147 RBI (’98 and ’99), ranking tied for third in Cardinals history. He was a three-time All-Star while with St. Louis (1998, 1999, 2000) and won the Silver Slugger in 1998.

Matt Morris (#MorrisHOF)

101-62, 3.61 ERA, 986 K’s

Matt Morris was the No. 1 draft pick (twelfth overall) for St. Louis in the 1995 amateur draft and reached the Majors just a year and a half later. He made his Major League debut on April 4, 1997, and went 12-9 that season in thirty-three starts. He finished third in the Rookie of the Year balloting in 1997 and was a two-time All-Star in 2001 and 2002. Morris tied for the lead in the Majors with 22 wins in 2001 (also Curt Schilling), finishing third in Cy Young voting. Morris pitched for the Cardinals from 1997-2005, and played in five postseasons and one World Series (2004). He won 101 games over his career with St. Louis and still ranks seventh on the franchise All-Time lists with a .620 winning pct. and sixth with 986 strikeouts.

Edgar Renteria (#RenteriaHOF)

.290 AVG, 451 RBI, 207 2B

Edgar Renteria played six seasons with the Cardinals and was named a National League All-Star three times (2000, 2003, 2004). The shortstop won two Gold Gloves while with St. Louis in 2002 and 2003, and three Silver Slugger Awards in 2000, 2002 and 2003. Renteria batted .330 with St. Louis in 2003, the All-Time Cardinals single-season leader for a shortstop, as are his 47 doubles that season. He drove in his single-season high 100 runs in 2003 which rank second among all St. Louis shortstops, and his 83 RBI in 2002 are his second highest career total. Renteria stole 37 bases his first season with the Cardinals (1999) and his 147 steals while with St. Louis are second-highest in franchise history for a shortstop.

 Scott Rolen (#RolenHOF)

.286 AVG, 173 2Bs, 111 HR, 453 RBI,

In his five plus seasons (2002-2007) with the Cardinals, Scott Rolen dominated the hot corner winning Gold Gloves in 2003, 2004 and 2006, and the Silver Slugger award in 2002. He was named to the National League All-Star team in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006, and named to the All-Busch Stadium team as the third baseman by vote of fans. Rolen hit a career high 49 doubles in 2003 and had 48 doubles during the team’s 2006 World Championship season. He hit over 20 homers three times with St. Louis (2003, ’04, ’06) and had over 90 RBI each of those same three seasons. In 2004, Rolen batted .314 which ranked second among National League third basemen and was second on the team, a year in which the club had four players with an average above .300. Following the 2004 season, Rolen finished fourth in National League MVP voting. Rolen was a big contributor during the postseason with St. Louis. He batted .310 (9-29) during the National League Championship Series vs. Houston in 2004, including his two-run home run off Roger Clemens in the sixth inning of Game 7 that plated the pennant-clinching run. In 2006, Rolen helped the club to its tenth World Championship, closing out the postseason with a 10-game hitting streak (.351, 13-37) that began in Game 3 of the NLCS vs. the New York Mets.

Joe Torre (#TorreHOF)

1971 N.L. MVP, .308 AVG, 161 2B, 98 HR, 558 RBI

Joe Torre played six seasons with the Cardinals at catcher, first base and third base from 1969-74. He was a four-time All-Star while playing for St. Louis, being named to the team in 1970, 1971, 1972 and 1973. Torre was named the National League MVP in 1971, after leading the league with a .363 batting average, 137 RBI and 230 hits. His 230 hits in ’71 were the most since Stan Musial had 230 in 1948 and still rank as the fourth highest single season total in franchise history. He posted a career batting average with the Cardinals of .308, ranking ninth in Cardinals franchise history. During his six seasons with the Cardinals, Torre had over 100 RBI three times and never had less than 149 hits or a batting average lower than .282.

 The 2016 Cardinals Hall of Fame “Red Ribbon” Selection Panel

Tom Ackerman, Frank Cusumano, Derrick Goold, Rick Hummel, Randy Karraker, Whitey Herzog, Martin Kilcoyne, Jenifer Langosch, Tony La Russa, Bernie Miklasz, Joe Ostermeier, Rob Rains, Red Schoendienst and Brian Walton.

Cardinals Hall of Fame Museum (#CardsMuseum)

The 8,000 square foot St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum on the second floor of Cardinals Nation in Ballpark Village celebrates the rich history of baseball in St. Louis and the legacy of one of baseball’s most storied franchises. The Cardinals’ museum collection is the largest team-held collection in baseball and is second only to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in terms of size with over 22,000 memorabilia items and hundreds of thousands of archival photographs. Fans can learn more about the museum at cardinals.com/museum.

Who are your favorites of the nominees listed above?  It’s sure going to be hard to choose! You can vote starting on March 11 at cardinals.com.  That’s all for now – see you next time!

Diane

The top 5 Cardinals stories of 2013

imageThe United Cardinals Bloggers’ December project is the top 5 stories are for the year. Here are my nominations:

1.  The death of Stan Musial. Stan was baseball’s perfect knight and an era ended with his death. It’s rare that a player spends his entire career with a team like Stan did. Much is made of the “face of the franchise” tag these days, but Stan was the epitome of the Cardinal Way. You can read my blog posts about Stan’s passing here and here.

2.  Chris Carpenter’s retirement.  Chris’ pitching led the Cards to two World Series championships.  He not only contributed with his arm, he worked with other pitchers and his larger than life personality lit up the bench.  He will hopefully accept  a position with the Cardinals’ front office.  You can read my blog post about Chris’ retirement here.

3.  Winning the National League pennant.  It was a grueling road to the pennant. It took all 5 games for the Cardinals to knock off Pittsburgh.  The Cards then took 6 out of 7 games to finish off the Dodgers.  The momentum, however, wasn’t enough to beat the Red Sox in the World Series.  But we Cards fans can still be proud of the NL pennant.

4.  Mo’s wheeling and dealing during the off season.  During the last couple of years, Cards GM John Mozeliak didn’t make many moves during the off season.  This year was an exception, however.  David Freese and Fernando Salas were traded for Angels CF’s Peter Bourjos and Randal Grichuk.  Free agent SS Jhonny Peralta was signed to a  four year contract.  Mo finished up by picking up veteran Mark Ellis from the Dodgers to mentor and back up Kolten Wong at 2B.  And Mo did all this without having to give up any of our rookie pitchers.  Mo is a genius.

5.  The rise of Michael Wacha.  What a season it was for young Michael Wacha, one of the best of the Cards’ rookie pitchers.  After being called up, Wacha had a 4-1 record during the regular season, but he had 4 wins in the playoffs, and won the MVP award in the NLCS.  Only the loss in Game 6 of the World Series dimmed his bright rising.  It will be interesting to see how Wacha pitches next season.

The UCB mourned the loss of one of its writers last week.  Jerome “J.D.” Norton, who wrote the Bleed Cardinal Red With Me blog and later on Cards Conclave,  sadly took his own life on December 22 at the young age of 38.  Our prayers and condolences are with his wife and family.  His online obituary is here, should you wish to express your condolences. Folks, if you or anyone you know is suffering from depression or any other kind of mental illness, please get help!  The life you save may be your own.

Thanks for reading!  Here’s wishing you a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2014!

Diane

 

Thanks for the memories, Chris Carpenter

At this afternoon’s press conference, Cardinals GM John Mozeliak formally announced what we had all expected for a while, but was still sad to hear – the retirement of Chris Carpenter.  When I read the announcement of the press conference on Twitter today, I had the sinking feeling that it would be about Chris.  Chris was the ace of the Cardinals pitching staff. But he had only pitched 3 games in the last 2 years because of  neck and shoulder injuries.  Clearly, the time had come for Chris to retire, but it was still a sad occasion.

Chris had a stellar 10 year career with the Cardinals.  In every year he was able to pitch, he won 11 games. He won the Cy Young in 2005 and finished third in the vote the following year.  He appeared in 3 All Star Games.  He helped the Cardinals win 2 World Series championships.  He also won the 2009 Comeback Player of the Year. His final record was 144-94, with a 3.92 ERA.  In 18 postseason starts, Chris was 10-4 with a 3.00 ERA.  It was those playoff games he pitched that I’ll remember the most.  Who will ever forget Game 5 of the 2011 NLCS, the great pitching duel between Carp and good friend Doc Halliday?  That was a game for the ages.  And pitching Game 7 of the 2011 World Series on short rest and actually winning was simply incredible.

Not only was Chris a great pitching talent, but he had a dynamic personality as well.  Chris was full of piss and vinegar, and his language was often salty too.  When he wasn’t pitching, he wasn’t sitting on the bench relaxing, but he would stand at the rail and watch the game, cheering on Cardinals players at bat and in the field.  Chris was a great competitor.  His playing style was more like that of a hockey player – tough and in your face.   During the last couple of seasons, Chris was mentoring Adam Wainwright and the rookie pitchers brought up from the minor leagues.  His tutoring and presence helped the rookie pitchers get acclimated to the major leagues.

During the press conference, Mo said the team would have discussions with Chris in early 2014 about a new role for him with the team.  I believe that Carp would make an excellent assistant pitching coach.  He was doing that in an informal capacity the last two seasons anyway.  Chris could teach his style of pitching and his passion for the game to a new generation of pitchers, and then we wouldn’t have to miss him so bad if we could still see him in the dugout or the bullpen, encouraging and teaching other players.

Okay, I have to stop typing about Chris now and go on to other news or I’m going to cry.  In other news, Mike Matheny’s contract was extended for 3 years, which was also announced at the press conference today.  He will be the Cardinals manager until 2017.  The contract extension was a nice vote of confidence by Cardinals management in Matheny’s abilities as a manager.

One more thing before I close – Friday is the last day you can vote on the 2014 Cardinals Blogger Awards.  Here is the link to my last blog post, which has the ballot embedded in the post – http://womenwholovecardinalsbaseball.mlblogs.com/2013/11/08/its-2013-cardinals-blogger-awards-time/.

Thanks for reading!  See you next time!

Diane

As the World Series Turns

WS_FINALS_Web_MasterMiniseries were popular TV programs back in the 1970’s, 1980’s, and the 1990’s. The episodes of the miniseries were shown in prime time over several nights.  They were mostly historical dramas, based on previously published books, although some were based on fiction books.  Some of the more popular mini-series of those decades were Roots, North and South, and The Thorn Birds.

The 2013 World Series, Major League Baseball’s version of the miniseries, starts tonight.  The cast of players are the two teams that battled through the Division Series and the Championship Series in their respective leagues.  The settings for this Series are the old and venerable Fenway Park featuring the Green Monster, which opened in 1912, and the newer Busch Stadium III, which opened in 2006.  Both teams also had the best regular season record in their respective leagues, the first time that has happened since 1999.

Every good miniseries has several story arcs, and this World Series is no exception.  This is Carlos Beltran’s first trip to the World Series in his long illustrious career, and it’s Yadier Molina’s fourth trip to the Series.  This is Mike Matheny’s first trip to the World Series as a manager.  Chris Carpenter took batting practice at Fenway to fulfill a long held dream and he hit pretty well.  Maybe he should have been put on the roster on the bench?  LOL!

Will rookie Michael Wacha be as lights out on the mound as he was during the NLCS? Or will he get nervous and choke?  Will Matt Adams start hitting like he did during the regular season?  How will Allen Craig perform in a DH role?

This World Series brings hope to Boston after the terrible bombing at the Boston Marathon.  It’s the battle of the Red Sox beards versus the fresh faced Cardinals rookies.  It’s a showdown between 2 of the oldest franchises in MLB.  And of course, each team claims the best fans in baseball.

This World Series is the fourth meeting between the Red Sox and the Cardinals. The Cardinals hold a 3-1 lead in the matchups.  In the 2004 World Series, the Cards were swept in 4 games by the Sox.  Will there be revenge this year for 2004?  Only Molina, Matheny, and Chris Carpenter remain from that Cardinals team.

It would be easy to get caught up in all the drama.  But underneath it all, this is still the World Series and there is still baseball to be played.  On paper, the Cards and the Red Sox appear evenly matched.  This should be a very good World Series.  My prediction is that the Cards will win in 6, for Stan.  Let’s go Cards!  My next post will give you all the logistics for the 2013 World Series games and events.

Thanks for reading!  See you soon!

Diane

On a roll

Baseball season has finally begun, and Cardinals fans are rejoicing.  The 2012 Cardinals have picked up where they left off in 2011, winning all but one of their first 6 games.  The bats are hot and the defense is great. Mr. He-Who-Will-Not-Be-Named is now Mr. He-Who-Will-Not-Be-Missed.  This is a different Cardinals team without Mr. You-Know-Who;  a real team, a sum of all its parts, not Mr. You-Know-Who and then the rest of the team.  No set of rules for Mr. You-Know-Who and another set of rules for the rest of the team.

Mike Matheny is a confident manager.  His players respect him and are supportive of him.  And Mark McGuire is turning out to be a great hitting coach.  And why not?  Surely the man who once hit 70 home runs in one season knows something about hitting.  Knowing how to hit and knowing how to teach players to hit are two different things, but McGwire seems to be melding them together quite well.

The only loss thus far this season is the game in which Adam Wainwright pitched.  He did well enough, considering it was the first regular season game that he had pitched since September 2010.  I think it will take a couple of starts for Adam to get the rust off and get his focus back. Batters had better watch out once he does.

Will the Cardinals be able to keep up this pace all season?  It is a long 162 game season, after all.  There is bound to be a slump or two. Hopefully, there will be no major injuries besides Chris Carpenter’s balky shoulder.  But I really like the new attitude and the new spirit of these 2012 Cardinals.  I think they’re going to be a fun team to watch this year. What do you think? Comments are welcome, as long as they’re civilized.

Congratulations to Matt Leffler, Matt McArthur, and Aaron Morey, the winners of the 2011 World Series Collector’s DVD sets!  If you didn’t win, stay tuned – there will be another giveaway of a different DVD later this week, thanks to my friends at A&E.  Thanks for reading!  See you next time!

Diane