Nine games in the early 2011 season have left our Cardinals floundering. Some fans have already thrown in the towel in disgust, heading off in search of less painful entertainment options. But yesterday, others who donned their “true fan” label as a badge of courage were rewarded to what we can only hope will be more typical (winning) Cardinal baseball.
The record is not pretty at 3 wins and 6 losses, but the Cards have had some strikes against them. The most obvious has been lack of run support coupled with costly fielding errors. Leading the league in double plays (not the defensive kind) hasn’t helped much either. And then there’s Albert…. With a string of unAlbertlike games and a batting average of .143, is it any wonder that Cardinal fans are wondering if we all fell down the rabbit hole?
There are, however, signs of life. Slugger Matt Holliday returned yesterday, 9 days after his emergency appendectomy, showing he was back and ready for action. David Freese belted his first homerun and collected his first 3 rbi of the season, helping the Cardinals score their inaugural “6 serious runs.” Kyle Lohse, showing strength and command, went 8 full innings with no walks, 5 strikeouts and only 5 hits. He threw 96 pitches, 65 for strikes. Couple that with previous stellar early outings by Jaime Garcia and Chris Carpenter (whose records are unfortunately tarnished by lack of run support) and a strong showing from Kyle McClellan - and we have reason to hope this is just an unlucky/slow start.
Two of my favorite bloggers have taken the high road from all the grumblings and cussing about the comedy of errors we have witnessed lately from our hobbling redbirds. If you need to be nudged away from the ledge, I highly recommend stopping by their sites for a positive reality check.
Bob at On the Outside Corner posts “There Must Be A Pony In There Somewhere”
And Mark at Retrosimba reminds us of the many, many years that our “Cards Turned Bad Starts Into Great Seasons.”
Sure, one good game does not a rally make. But the Cardinals are not dead and buried. So chin up, Cardinal Nation. There are signs of life! ;)
The boys continue their western road trip tonight against the Diamondbacks with Kyle McClellan on the mound at 8:40 CT. You never know what baseball magic you may see. So tune in with us and watch the rally continue!