Valiant But Outmatched

That would seem to sum up September for the Cardinals. It’s not that they’ve been blown out that much–they’ve been outscored 113-89 for the month, an average of 1.26 runs per game–but that they’ve just not been able to get that big hit or hold the other team with two outs. The team ERA for the month is 5.30, which ranks 12th in the NL. (Talk about being pounded–Florida is at 6.38). A little better pitching, and there still is a pennant race for St. Louis to talk about.

But it’s not, so the Cardinals are looking at the fact that they have lost 11 of 12 and basically eliminated any chance of a .500 season.  Then you get Superman, Albert Pujols, not playing because of injury and doubtful for today.   That doesn’t happen unless things are really bad.  Hopefully another day of rest and he can get back out there to get the runs and RBI he needs for a seventh consecutive 100 season.

Mark Mulder goes and gets an MRI, which probably means that he won’t be throwing again this year.  There just isn’t much reason to jeopardize him when it’s not necessary.  Even if the results are negative, shutting him down may be the best thing to do.

Then, the big rumor out there today is that TLR is interested in Seattle.   I’m not buying it, especially if they are thinking a package deal with him and Walt.  The Cardinals won’t let Jocketty out of his contract for ’08 without extracting quite a price (probably someone like Adam Jones) and the Mariners won’t want to pay that.  But TLR has often commented how much he enjoys managing in the National League, and he has to realize that the Cardinals are going to contend at least for division titles for a number of years to come, most likely.  Seattle has to deal with powerhouses in LA and Oakland, plus the Yanks and Red Sox on a regular basis.

Seattle would be closer to his home and would be another low-pressure city, but I don’t think LaRussa packs up for the Pacific Northwest.  If he didn’t have Ankiel and Pujols here, maybe he’d think about it.  But having those guys for next year, guys he has a real personal connection with, I think is enough to have him back.

Milwaukee won, Cubs lost.  Not a bad day, since it gets the Brewers back in first.