As the Cards take on the Milwaukee Brewers, I will unleash a round of pregame rambling for you to digest as the first pitch sails into the mitt. Allen Craig has taken an at bat in Boston and lined out. Joe Kelly is probably busy becoming the clubhouse joker that he perfected in St. Louis. Things are changing folks, and let’s run down a list of random thoughts.
- Adam Wainwright goes for win #14 tonight against the Brew Crew, whom he shut down over 7 innings in his last look at them. Waino is putting together a superb season. His ERA sits at a stingy 1.92 and he has only walked 34 batters in 149.2 innings. The most impressive thing is Waino has 132 strikeouts on the season and they are split nearly down the middle between RH bats and LH bats. Waino has struck out 62 lefties and 60 righties. Impressive to say the least. He is my Cy Young pick right now and I don’t need my red colors to show it.
- John Mozeliak was never going to trade Oscar Taveras. Unless Miami called. That is it. I don’t think the GM thought for a second about loosening up the grip on Oscar.
- People around the nets have complained about Mozeliak not getting any offense. I ask you all. Where was he going to get the offense and where would the proposed offense play? Center field is occupied by Jon Jay and Peter Bourjos. Right field was freed up for Oscar with the departure of Craig. Wong and Carpenter are fixtures. Jhonny Peralta is doing a very good job at shortstop. Matt Adams is hitting well. Matt Holliday is turning it on. The Cards have two catchers and Molina returning in September. Where would that bat play exactly? I am not getting a lot of answers today on that. Matheny has a hard enough time playing Oscar much less Stephen Piscotty, Tommy Pham or Greg Garcia. The waiver wire will be interesting. There are options out there but the question remains. Where do they play and who gets bumped?
- John Lackey isn’t a nice guy and a lot of teams hate him. That’s great because you know what. Baseball isn’t a popularity contest among players. This is a job. There are things to be done. Lackey can be liked when he goes back to his hometown in Texas. On a field, he barks, screams and is intense. You know who that reminds me of? Chris Carpenter. Other teams hated him. Lackey is memorable to me because he outpitched Michael Wacha in Game 6 last October to shut off the lights on the 2013 season. He is an UPGRADE over Joe Kelly.
- Mike Matheny was born to utter the exact words he did when asked about losing Craig and Kelly. He acted like two brothers had been shipped to Iraq and that’s the typical response from the skipper. However, this isn’t a thanksgiving table. This is a business that can be family oriented. This was Mozeliak stepping in and not sending away Matheny’s favorite player, but easing the decision making of the manager. The lineups should(and that’s a big word for this team) come easier.
- Jim Hayes of Fox Sports Midwest has to be the most stricken person in St. Louis right now. Players joked with him about being traded out and now his best friend and pregame tango partner, Kelly, is gone. Sorry Cat.
- Checking in on Ex-Cards. Carlos Beltran has cranked his 13th home run of the season. After a slow start, the veteran is coming around. I still don’t think it was wrong to let him walk. 45 million reasons to NOT reconsider.
- Allen Craig has doubled. Set off the alarms that it was a bad trade.
- Thursdays response by the Cards was well needed, as fellow Conclave writer Wes Keene noted in his column yesterday. Shelby Miller stepped up and pitched great. Matt Carpenter had 2 hits. The bullpen fired three scoreless frames. Oscar Taveras launched a 2 run home run. It was an emphatic victory.
- Everybody will see how good and ready Taveras is. He will play at least 5 days a week and get his full chance. He hasn’t started 10 straight games since he was first called up on May 31st. He started in 10 straight from May 31st to June 10th. Now, he is the primary right fielder.
Alright, I am out of here. Quick and painless. I will have more this weekend. The sports news cycle never stops moving, especially in the dog days of a baseball summer season.
Thanks for reading, folks. Follow me on Twitter, @buffa82, for instant doses and insight.