We’re down to the Elite 8! Before we look at the matchups, an update on those competing in the Favorite Living Cardinal bracket challenge:
Eugene Tierney 82
Jacqueline Conrad 81
Ross Willimann 73
Matt Rath #1 70
Joe Schwarz 69
Matt Rath #2 60
Mary Rath 57
My personal picks score a 67. Looking forward, while Eugene has the top spot for now, his overall winner of Pujols has been knocked out of the tournament, meaning it’s going to be a tougher road for him. Only Jacqueline, Matt #1, Joe and Ross have their Final Four intact. Will that be the case after these battles?
As always, these polls will be open until tomorrow at noon and we’ll start the Final Four pairings on Friday. Enjoy, at least as much as you can with some tough decisions ahead!
1) Ozzie Smith vs. 2) Willie McGee
Smith’s road: Took out #16 Brendan Ryan 42-0, #8 Vince Coleman 32-1 and #5 Albert Pujols 30-9.
McGee’s road: Eliminated #15 Ken Dayley 45-0, #10 Tom Herr 28-3 and #3 Mark McGwire 29-10.
Notes: I wonder how many times St. Louis schoolkids in the 1980s had exactly this argument? Ozzie’s the Hall of Famer and has a great bit of personal affection, but Willie’s no slouch in that department either.
BALLPARK VILLAGE REGION
1) Bob Gibson vs. 2) Ted Simmons
Gibson’s road: Knocked off #16 Al Hrabosky 24-2, #8 Joaquin Andujar 23-0 and #5 Yadier Molina 30-3.
Simmons’s road: Beat #15 Mark Mulder 27-3, #7 Mike Matheny 15-10 and #3 Joe Torre 23-9
Notes: This could easily be the battery on an All-Time Cardinal team. I’m honestly surprised Simmons has made it this far–just didn’t realize the fondness people had for him. Still, he’s staring at a Gibby heater, which is never pleasant.
1) Lou Brock vs. 2) Jim Edmonds
Brock’s road: Sped past #16 Dal Maxvill 28-1, #8 Steve Kline 20-1 and #5 Mike Shannon 21-8.
Edmonds’s road: Flashed by #15 Aaron Miles 20-1, #7 Rick Ankiel 15-4 and #6 Scott Rolen 22-6
Notes: A couple of stellar outfielders meet up in this one. Brock’s had longer to build up goodwill but Edmonds has a pretty deep reservoir of it as well. This one should be pretty interesting.
2) Red Schoendienst vs. 4) Adam Wainwright
Schoendienst’s road: Outclassed #15 Todd Worrell 41-1, #7 Jason Isringhausen 26-1 and #3 Matt Morris 21-0.
Wainwright’s road: Outfoxed #13 Julian Javier 22-3, #5 Matt Holliday 16-2 and #1 Bruce Sutter 18-2.
Notes: Red has had the best tournament, with only two votes cast against him in the three rounds. Waino, though, is the only person so far to knock off a #1 seed and also has the benefit of being one of the current Cardinals.
There you have it, the four regional finals. Get your vote in before noon tomorrow and let’s see who moves on!