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Old 01-04-2012, 10:08 PM  
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***Offical 2012 STL Cardinals World Champions Thread ***

St. Louis Cardinals: 7 reasons fans should feel good about 2012

Posted Wednesday, October 24, 2012, at 9:26 PM

St. Louis Cardinals fans are likely feeling deflated after the collapse that put an end to the team's dreams of a World Series repeat, but there is good reason to be excited.

With all of the odds against them, the Cardinals managed to push their 2012 season beyond any anticipated boundary.

Given all of the season's changes and the adversity the team had to fight through, the fact that they played in October at all was an anomaly in itself. On paper, it made sense for the Cardinals to be in the playoffs, but few saw them as a true threat.
As the season continued, even fans began to doubt as they watched the team seemingly crumble in June and July. When the Cardinals finally came to life in September they went 11-5 in the last 16 games of the season to lock up the second Wild Card position in its inaugural year.

That run, despite it's crushing end in Cincinnati in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series, lots of good came from the Cardinals' season and playoff run.
Following in no particular order are 10 reasons Cardinals fans have to be excited about the 2013 season.

Trevor Rosenthal
When rookie fireballer Trevor Rosenthal made his first trip to St. Louis, it was obvious almost instantly that he was something special.
Between his 100 mph fastball and the general inability for almost anyone to hit off of him, he became a huge part of the Cardinals playoff run.

He pitched in a total of 19 regular season games before the 22-year-old rookie from Lee's Summit, Mo. got his first taste of postseason baseball and he put on quite a show.
In 8.2 IP over seven postseason appearances, Rosenthal held opponents to only two hits and no runs.
It's possible that down the stretch he may have already earned his spot in the rotation for 2013.

Shelby Miller
The long-coveted fastball pitching prospect Shelby Miller also made his first trip to St. Louis in 2012 and put on a good show.
In 13.2 IP over six regular season games, Miller surrendered only two runs on nine hits. His postseason performance was more of the same with two runs on four hits in 3.2 IP.

Despite a dismal first half of the season in Memphis, Miller got himself together and still managed to make one major league start before the end of the season -- a very impressive start at that.
Against the Cincinnati Reds in the final game of the regular season, Miller posted 5.2 hitless innings. He gave up no runs and collected his first major league win.

Expect to see a lot more of Miller in St. Louis early in 2013.

Joe Kelly
When Joe Kelly made his major league debut on June 10, few could have guessed the importance he would play throughout the remainder of the 2012 season.
Kelly started 16 games for the Cardinals this season filling in for Jaime Garcia and Lance Lynn, but it was the postseason when he really came through for his teammates.

When starting pitchers struggled time and again in October, it was Kelly who came to their rescue.
In seven postseason appearances, Kelly threw 7.2 innings and surrendered only two runs on six hits. Kelly came through for the Cardinals from the bullpen.
There's a good chance that could be his home in the future.

Mike Matheny
When the Cardinals hired Mike Matheny to take over for Tony LaRussa, many question bringing in a manager with no experience to such a storied franchise.

He had a few hiccups and growing pains along the way, but for a rookie manager to get his team where Matheny did this year speaks volumes.
His players have a strong respect for Matheny and credit his positive style with being a driving force behind their 2012 success.
True, he didn't get them through the NLCS, but the team made it to an all or nothing Game 7. That's good experience for the players obviously, but also for Matheny. Not only did he learn a lot about managing in the media pressure cooker that is postseason baseball, he also got a taste of what it felt like to win as a manager.

NLCS loss means more drive to win
While the NLCS loss was a good lesson for a young manager, it's an even more important lesson for a young player.
The 2011 championship lit a fire under young players like Lance Lynn and Jon Jay. That fire helped drive them to extremely successful sophomore seasons.

What happened in 2012 will likely do the same for Rosenthal, Miller and Kelly. Their 2013 season may not be like Jay or Lynn's 2012, but now they've gotten a little taste of what it feels like to be a winner.

Both the excitement and the public humbling can be a great experience for any young player.

The run was without several key components
In a season riddled with injuries, none were as crucial as those late in the season.
The loss of Lance Berkman and Rafael Furcal significantly weakened the team's bench. Instead of having Pete Kozma, Allen Craig and Matt Carpenter to pinch hit, the team wound up having to use them in the lineup.

The loss of Jaime Garcia and Jake Westbrook also rocked the Cardinals. Instead of having Lynn and Westbrook also available from the bullpen, Lynn was pushed back into the rotation after a very successful NLDS bullpen stint.

Having gotten as deep into the playoffs as the Cardinals did in spite of the injuries is quite the accomplishment.

They did it without Pujols, LaRussa and Duncan
Few in the world of sports gave the Cardinals a fighting chance when Albert Pujols left the team to play on the west coast. Surely this team couldn't be as good as they were?

Few gave them a chance after longtime manager Tony LaRussa decided it was time to retire.
Few gave them a chance after pitching coach Dave Duncan left the team.
The Cardinals did it despite all of that. That's something any fan should be proud of.

No, they didn't hoist a trophy. There will be no parade or tickertape.
What there is, though, is hope for next year and that will come sooner than you may think.
After all, pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in just four short months.

From a blog I was sent on twitter: http://www.dailystatesman.com/blogs/...es/entry/50051

Last edited by BigRedChief; 10-24-2012 at 09:57 PM..
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Old 10-08-2012, 09:38 PM   #1381
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My cable company is really pissing me off. I taped the game because I had an appointment at 4. When I watched it I had the first inning, then it froze in the 2nd inning. It was 0-0 and when it came back up it was 7-4. The young kid looked good in the 9th. Could be a future closer or set up man. Has a nice easy delivery.
mine froze in the 2nd inning too but I caught it by the top of the 3rd.
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Old 10-08-2012, 09:39 PM   #1382
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Yeah - my bad, Tony.

Though in the defense of many (myself included) - the gripe was never that we traded Rasmus, but that we got so little in return for him. That gripe remains legitimate, IMO. Dotel was a salary dump that we could've had for free. Jackson we know was a salary dump, afterall the Blue Jays got him for a nominal prospect in return for taking on Teahen's salary in order to facilitate the 3-way deal.

Had we traded Rasmus for someone like Alex Cobb (rumored return), nobody would've been that upset. Instead we traded him for a couple of salary dumps and a lefty reliever. That's a pretty awful return for a guy who 8 months prior had the highest OPS among center fielders in the national league and wasn't that far removed from not being able to drink legally.

But yeah, Jay is a bauce.
Who in the hell would have given a used diaper for Rasmus knowing what they were getting into is beyond me and he has proven that to be true.

The trade is so lopsided right now its ridiculous. The getting rid of him so you give up on him finally benefit is almost immeasurable. Dump your problem child and move on. Now look what you got. Jon Jay is a better Cardinal already than Rasmus ever was.
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Old 10-08-2012, 10:54 PM   #1383
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Thats not good. He's probably done for the year. He could have took a future game at Bush and if on gave us 7 good innings. It will hurt our depth. But, I have more confidence in Rosenthal and Kelley, Lynn to pick up the slack.
Plug Lynn into his spot in the 4-man playoff rotation and Joe Kelly moves into the long relief role. The only depth you lose is you won't have two long relievers but you can shore that up with three or four short relievers if needed. Carp coming back helps a ton, especially given we lost Westbrook. So a playoff 4-man of Lohse, Waino, Carp and Lynn (pitching like he has been) is not too bad.
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Old 10-08-2012, 10:56 PM   #1384
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I was so f-ing pissed at Beltran in the top of the 2nd for his run the ball back to the infield bullshit that I threw a 5 minute temper tantrum. It must have worked because all of a sudden the Cards figured out how to hit again. The lineup top to bottom was just filthy. Only guy to really do nothing was Frazod's hero Matt Holliday, although he did walk a couple times.
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Old 10-08-2012, 11:27 PM   #1385
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congrats today ya'll.
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Old 10-08-2012, 11:37 PM   #1386
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I was so f-ing pissed at Beltran in the top of the 2nd for his run the ball back to the infield bullshit that I threw a 5 minute temper tantrum. It must have worked because all of a sudden the Cards figured out how to hit again. The lineup top to bottom was just filthy. Only guy to really do nothing was Frazod's hero Matt Holliday, although he did walk a couple times.
Heh. I just noticed that. The 0-4 sort of stood out among all those big numbers.
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:51 AM   #1387
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I'd like to see Rosenthal as a starter.
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:18 AM   #1388
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I'd like to see Rosenthal as a starter.
You can definitely see a little Verlander in him. I am not sure how many innings he can go throwing triple digits, but at the worst the guy can be an elite stopper. The Cardinals have at least 4 guys that can hit upper 90's (Motte, Boggs, Rosenthal and Kelly).
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:40 AM   #1389
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I just read that Garcia had been experiencing pain in the shoulder for a week or two and didn't tell anyone. Shoulder issue or not, I could really see him being done as a Cardinal. The dumbass went into basically a must-win game knowing he wasn't 100% and didn't tell a soul. From the article I read, some of his teammates are pissed, and rightfully so. Luckily Matheny pulled the plug at the right time and Lynn did what he needed to do.
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:19 PM   #1390
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MRI shows strain & inflammation, no damage. Season probably over anyway, but at least it doesn't appear to be too serious.
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:06 PM   #1391
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congrats today ya'll.
yeah, the more we win , the better the loss by the Braves looks?

Whats the city saying about the fan meltdown today?
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:11 PM   #1392
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I just read that Garcia had been experiencing pain in the shoulder for a week or two and didn't tell anyone. Shoulder issue or not, I could really see him being done as a Cardinal. The dumbass went into basically a must-win game knowing he wasn't 100% and didn't tell a soul. From the article I read, some of his teammates are pissed, and rightfully so. Luckily Matheny pulled the plug at the right time and Lynn did what he needed to do.
That is some seriously selfish actions by Garcia. I bet his teammates are pissed. Being selfish in the playoffs always goes over well with your fellow teammates.
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Old 10-09-2012, 07:39 PM   #1393
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MRI shows strain & inflammation, no damage. Season probably over anyway, but at least it doesn't appear to be too serious.
The problem is that the strain/inflammation was exactly what he had to begin the season.

It suggests he either has a weakened shoulder that will be subject to aggravation going forward or that he has bad mechanics.

Something to notice about Garcia is the incredible amount of strain he puts on his shoulder - he really loads the hell out of that thing:



And he's not a broadly built guy, his arm is going to be even less likely to be able to handle the strain of that kind of extreme shoulder/hip turn as he starts to come forward.

In short, I still don't think Jaime is long for this earth.
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Old 10-09-2012, 07:46 PM   #1394
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Looks like next game is on MLB. That leaves me out.
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:14 PM   #1395
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From STL today:
Beltran is one of the best postseason hitters in MLB history. In only 25 games he’s launched 13 homers, driven in 22 runs and scored 34 runs. He has a career postseason batting average of .362, with a .478 OBP and an .819 SLG. That’s ridiculous. Are you kidding, 13 homers in 94 postseason at-bats? Crazy.

Who leads in OPS with at least 100 AB's in the postseason?
#1 Beltran
#2 Babe Ruth
#3 Gehrig
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