Posted by JE Powell
The January (yes, I know, I am a little late putting this up) United Cardinal Bloggers monthly project is for bloggers to list their top five iconic moments in Cardinals history. So, here are my Top Five:
5. The Ozzie Smith Backflip
My first taste of Cardinals fever started in the early ’80s when my dad and grandpa took me to my first game. Growing up in the ’80s I do not have a more clear or fond memory of Cardinals baseball than seeing Ozzie Smith do his backflip. As a youngster of five or six years, I was enthralled watching him do that and when I think of Cardinals baseball in the ’80s I think Ozzie Smith and his backflip.
4. McGwire’s 62nd Home Run
I realize that this feat has been tainted with Mark McGwire’s admission of taking steriods, but the home run race in 1998 between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa helped bring baseball back into the mainstream. The strike in 1994 had hurt the sport, but the home run duel between Big Mac and Sosa aided in bringing it back and the first one to 62 homers was Big Mac. I remember seeing him run the bases (nearly missing 1st in the process) and was extremely excited that the home run record now belonged to a Cardinal. I may take some slack for this pick, but at the time it was monumental. Read More…
Posted by JE Powell
The holidays are finally over. Yes, I certainly enjoy them, but as a parent with an ever expanding family (siblings getting married, getting ready to give birth [though not the same sibling], etc) the holidays can be a bit, shall we say, harried. In my neck of the woods we have had several days that were around 50 degrees Fahrenheit and has had a spring feel to it (though reports indicate snow is on the way; stupid Midwest weather) and with that it has served to remind me that baseball is once again right around the corner. In about five weeks St. Louis Cardinals pitchers and catchers will report to Jupiter, Florida on February 19th. That day, for me at least, is the official start of the baseball season.
My little blog will officially be over a year old on the aforementioned 19th. Well, I guess it depends on how one defines the blog’s birthday. I created the blog on February 15th, 2011. My first post was February 23rd, 2011. So, in human terms, I suppose one could argue that my blog had a gestation period of 8 days. Well, I guess that’s not really close in human terms. The closest would be the American opossum, which is 12-13 days and can be as short as 8 days, though, opossums are marsupials and give birth and then let the offspring develop in the ventral pouch of the mother. So, I suppose that my blog’s official birthday would be Feb. 23rd. So it will be just shy of a year old when pitchers and catchers report. But I digress.
Back to baseball. Since I am coming down with another case of Cardinal Fever (as you may recall, it’s a form of Bird Flu), well I guess I have had Cardinal Fever my whole life, so I am not coming down with it, let’s take a very quick peek at the 2012 season.
I hope to cover some of these topics more in depth at a later date, so these will just be quick hits for now. First, some of the questions for 2012:
- Will Adam Wainwright be able to come back from Tommy John surgery and be as dominant as he was before?
- Will Rafael Furcal and Carlos Beltran spend any significant time on the disabled list?
- Will Jon Jay be able to able to produce with the bat having considerably more playing time at centerfield (while he put up good numbers last year, statistically speaking, his numbers declined as his playing time went up)?
- Can Allen Craig come back from knee surgery and play as well as he did with limited playing time in 2011?
- Can David Freese stay healthy and carry over his magnificent play during the 2011 playoffs?
- How well will Mike Matheny manage the team?
- Who will see the most playing time at 2nd base?
Time will be the only one who can truly answer these questions, but they are questions that will affect (effect? I still don’t know which one to use and I have looked it up several times) the outcome of the season.
But the best part, in my opinion anyway, is finding the answers out. I am anxiously awaiting the start to the real New Year, the first day of baseball season (which, as you may recall, I have stated to be February 19th. Sure, the regular season doesn’t start until April this year, but I cannot wait that long. I miss baseball.
Posted by JE Powell
The A&E Home Entertainment/MLB Productions Official 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals 2 Disc-DVD Set (from here on out, I will just refer to it as the “DVD Set” because it’s just easier that way) is basically set up in three parts: The Official Film, the Bonus Material, and the entirety of NLDS Game 5 (Carpenter vs. Halladay). So, I have decided to review it that way. I now present to you, Part I: The Official Film.
I think that best review of the movie I can give is that my mother-in-law loved it. She is not a sports fan at all (except for her New Orleans Saints and even that is just a “check the team’s record every few weeks” sort of thing) and while I know she watch parts of a few World Series games, she really didn’t care who won or lost. So, I had just started watching the Official Film on Thanksgiving Day when my mother-in-law came into the room, sat down, and asked what I was watching. I said, “It’s about the Cardinals winning the World Series.” She replied with a simple, “Oh.”
Posted by JE Powell
It’s finally here, the official A & E Home Entertainment/MLB Productions 2 DVD Box Set of the 2011 World Series Champion ST. LOUIS CARDINALS!!!
Now, the DVD set comes out on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 with the World Premier at the Peabody Opera House in St. Louis and if you are in the area and want to buy tickets, just click the link and buy away. It looks like it’s going to be a blast. But perhaps you would prefer to stay home, since the weather is getting colder, and watch the DVD set from the comforts of your couch. The good news is that you can purchase the DVD set from A & E Home Entertainment and the MLB Shop! It’s a very good price for hours of enjoyment and cheaper than taking a loved one to the movies with you, not to mention (though I am going to anyway) the fact that you can watch it over and over again and relive some of the best moments from one of World Series in many years. There is also a trailer that you can check out.
Posted by JE Powell
It’s that time of year again when members of the United Cardinal Bloggers get to make their picks for for the Cardinal Blogger Awards. This year, however, readers get to vote for the Awards, too! Readers can vote here. So here’s your chance to make your voice heard. Well, not really your voice, but you get to make your picks known.
There are twenty categories and I have gone through and carefully determined who I feel is the best choice and why. So gather ’round and let me tell you the tale of the SS Minnow and its three hour tour…er, I mean let me tell you my picks:
Cardinals Player of the Year
This felt like an easy choice to me. Albert Pujols had more home runs and more RBI, but had trouble the first half of the season and grounded into a lot of double plays. Berkman was consistent all season long and filled in for Pujols while Pujols was on the disabled list. Berkman had 31 HR and 94 RBI, so he was pretty close to Pujols’ numbers and had a slightly better batting average at .301 (compared to .299 for Pujols). With Matt Holliday injured on an off all season, Berkman had to carry the team the 1st half and had some big hits in the playoffs.
Cardinals Pitcher of the Year
Like, Pujols, Carpenter struggled the first half of the season, but turned it on the second half of the season and was huge in late August and all of September and October. Carp pitched a shutout on the last day of the season and, coupled with an Atlanta Braves loss, helped the Cards secure a playoff berth. He also pitched a 1-0 shutout in Game 5 of the NLDS and pitched on 3 days rest in Game 7 of the World Series to ensure the Cardinals 11th Championship.
Regular Season Game of the Year
September 7th vs. Milwaukee
Carpenter pitched a 2-0 complete game shutout of the Brewers and struck-out Nyjer Morgan, which caused Morgan to have a temper tantrum. That was the Cardinals fifth win in that last six games against the Brewers and Morgan’s temper tantrum may have been a sparking moment that sent the Cardinals onto the playoffs and World Series.
Post Season Game of the Year
World Series, Game 6
This game could probably win Cardinals Post Season Game of the Decade without much effort. This was one of the best games I have ever seen in my life, period. The Texas Rangers took a 4-2 lead and the Cards tied it. Texas took a 7-4 lead and the Cardinals tied the game when they were down to their last strike. Texas took a 9-7 and the Cardinal tied it, again down to their last strike. David “Absolute Zero”** Freese hit a solo shot in the bottom of the 11th to win the game. The Cards may not have officially won the WS until winning game 7, but in reality, they won the World Series in game Six.
Surprise Player of the Year
Berkman had a disappointing season in 2010 and was traded from Houston to the Yankees where he continued to disappoint. However, he signed a one year deal with the Cardinals and ended up winning Comeback Player of the Year and had 31 HR and 94 RBI while batting .301. There was quite a bit of speculation that he probably wouldn’t be able to play the outfield any longer or that he had lost his swing or whatever. He proved them all wrong.
Disappointing Player of the Year
Rasmus had a strong first couple of weeks, but then began to slowly taper off and after 94 games played he was only batting .246 will 11 HR and 40 RBI. Not necessarily bad stats, but when a player whines and complains that he isn’t getting enough playing time when it seems obvious that he just isn’t trying very hard out in the field on defense, it’s disappointing. He had a lot of potential, but his maturing needs some work.
Rookie of the Year
I think it’s fitting to pick Craig here, because this category follows Rasmus. Craig also had 11 HR and 40 RBI for the Cardinals, but did it in only 75 games. He also hit .315. Craig came up huge in the playoffs, especially off the bench in the World Series.
Sensing a theme here? I don’t think I can add much to what I said the last two times a picked. He was just very important to the Cardinals run this year.
To steal a line from Mystery Science Theater 3000, Rzepczynski “isn’t a name, it’s a bad scrabble hand.” But this left hander really helped to solidify the bullpen and got some huge outs against left handed hitters in the playoffs.
Most Anticipated Cardinal
Jake Westbrook has really not worked out that well for the Cardinals. In fact, they only used him for one inning during the entire playoffs. He will be the 5th starter in the Cardinals rotation, but if he is struggling in late July or early August, I think the Cards will call up Shelby Miller. Miller has some maturing to do, but I think he will be a very important piece in the Cardinals rotation. Even if it’s not in 2012, I think he will be a starter in 2013.
Best Individual Cardinals Blog
Daniel is the Godfather of all Cardinals bloggers. He started the UCB (United Cardinal Bloggers) and the BBA (Baseball Bloggers Alliance), but his blog is more than that. He is insightful and puts a lot of time and effort into his blog. His blog post Happily Ever After is one of the better Cardinal posts I have read in quite some time and when I got done reading, I went back and reread it. It was that good.
Best Team Cardinals Blog (A blog with 2 or more bloggers)
Nick, Dennis, and Josh run an insightful, funny, witty, and enjoyable blog. I often find myself laughing out loud or nodding my head in agreement with something they have written.
Best Professional Cardinals Blog
Derrick Goold is a blogger and journalist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. His blog updated regularly and he often has inside information on trades, rumors, or anything Cardinals related.
Best Rookie Blog (Started after December 1st, 2010)
I had the pleasure of meeting Christine during the UCB Event at Busch Stadium the third game of the season and Tara and I interviewed each other for the Get to Know A UCBer monthly project in August and I had quite a bit of fun with that one. I have only read posts by Miranda, but I enjoy her upbeat writing style. AMF is a great site and I really do not see them having a sophomore slump.
Post of the Year
This blog post gave me goosebumps. It was just that damn good. I am not going to defend this pick. It can defend itself. Read it. Now! Go!
Best UCB Project
Get to Know a UCBer
Most Optimistic Cardinals Blog
Honestly, just check out the site. You will feel better about yourself and life in general. Trust me on this.
Best United Cardinal Bloggers Podcast
UCB Radio Hour
Best Cardinal Tweeter
Best Fake Twitter Account
I gotta be honest and say that I rarely tweet and I haven’t checked out any of the fake twitter accounts. I was listening to the MLB Network on XM and heard someone mention that an account had already been created just after the squirrel ran over home plate. That’s why I picked it.
Those are my choices for the Bloggies. You can read all the picks from the other bloggers at the UCB Official Site and don’t forget to vote for yourself, dear reader, the link is all the way back at the top of this post. There are many, many wonderful Cardinals bloggers and blog sites out there, so make sure that you hop over to the UCB site and check them ALL out.
**I call David Freese “Absolute Zero” because when he was up to bat twice during game six of the World Series and again in game seven he didn’t have ice running through his veins, he was so cool that all molecular activity ceased.
Posted by Steve Griffith
So, It’s now November 1st, and baseball season is over. Your St. Louis Cardinals are once again the World Champions, and if you are anything like me, you are still dreaming of baseball, and the season that was. In the next couple of days, you are going to start noticing some changes in yourself. You will begin to feel lonely around 7pm, maybe even a little depressed. Although your family may be sitting right next to you at the dinner table, or begging you to read a bed time story, you are going to feel as though something is missing. Like when you lose your car keys, and search the house top to bottom, even looking in the refrigerator just in case. Soon you will realize, what you are missing is the adrenaline rush you get every evening as your Redbirds step out on the field. You miss the way you could almost feel the grass under your feet while chasing down a flyball with Jon Jay, Lance Berkman, or Matt Holliday. You miss the excitement of stealing 2nd base, or turning a double play with Furcal, Schumaker, and Pujols. You miss the thrill of having a perfect game through 7 innings. You miss giving a standing ovation to Carpenter from your living room as he makes way for Salas, Sanchez, or Motte. If you’re lucky enough to go to several games every season, you miss the $8.00 beers, and the chicken nachos from El Birdos cafe. You miss the call of the folks peddling everything from cotton candy, to peanuts, to lemonade and water. You miss how one side of your face is sunburned after sitting in the lower bowl sections during a June day game. But most of all, you miss the thrill of always being in the penant race, and bragging about YOUR team, or playfully cracking jokes about the Cubs, Brewers, or Reds.
So how do we survive November to February?
There are plenty of baseball related activities that occur during this time. Not the least of which will be the on going Pujols contract talks, and the search for the next Tony La Russa. There will be plenty of this type of news to keep our feable baseball minds churning for the foreseeable months, but there are other things you can do.
1. Re-watch the postseason (if you were awesome enough to DVR the games, or buy the DVD’s that will inevitably be available soon.)
2. Get your fantasy baseball league ready for next seasons draft.
3. The first time the sun melts just a little bit of snow, grab your glove and play catch. Even if it means throwing the ball against the wall.
4. Attend a Cardinals Caravan event. I recommend getting there a few hours early, as our caravans are always well attended. Also, if you want an autograph, bring a small child with you, as they are often the only ones that get the autographs.
5. Read this blog often, as we will be posting the latest Cardinals information, rumors, etc… as often as we can.
6. Go visit your mom. While you are there, say hi to her and ask her how she is, but don’t forget the real reason you are there: To creep down to her basement and look through all of your old baseball cards.
7. Most importantly, take a breath and relax. Spend some time with your other die hard Cardinals friends, and just talk baseball. Talk about the glory that was 2011, and speculate about 2012. We all do it… It’s ok. Pretend you are Mo: What moves are you going to make this offseason? Who stays? Who goes?
Keep your mind in the game! It’s only 3 and a 1/2 months til pitchers and catchers report to spring training.
“People ask me what I do in the winter when there is no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” – Rogers Hornsby
Hello everyone. My name is Steve Griffith. I am a new contributor this blog. I would first like to thank JE Powell for allowing me the opportunity to write about the Cardinals on his blog. Most of the time, my rants and raves about the Cardinals have taken place over an ice cold Bud Light while sitting on a barstool or recliner while watching a game, so to have this forum as a place to talk about the Cardinals excites me. JE approached me about contributing to his blog three or four days ago, and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since. In fact, I’ve already written a few short posts that I am yet to publish.
So where did I come from? How did I become a Cards fan, and what makes what I have to say important?
Growing up in central Illinois, a boy has two options. They can be a Cubs fan or a Cardinals fan. That’s about it. My father, whose namesake I bear, tried his best to raise me as a Cubs fan. I remember how my Dad and I would watch Cubs games on tv. I always wondered why we rooted for a team that always did so bad. Growing up, the only thing I really yearned for, was to know my dad and I had something in common, and I thought cheering for his team would help us bond, but I also knew something just didn’t feel right about rooting for the Cubs, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what exactly it was. Looking back now, I remember falling asleep while watching Cubs games (even in the middle of the day). Cubs baseball was just so boring to me.
So what happened? When did my baseball life turn around? The year was 1997. I was 15, and a close friend of mine asked me if my cousin and I wanted to take a trip down to St. Louis to catch a Cardinals game. I accepted his invitation, under the condition that I wouldn’t wear a Cardinals shirt, hat, or any other paraphanallia. We embarked on our 2 and a half hour journey to the Lou (as I affectionately call it now) in a little red Chevy S-10. The truck wasn’t very comfortable for the rider in the extended cab portion, so we took turns riding in the bed of the truck. A little over half way down to the Lou, we were pulled over by an unmarked police Mustang for speeding. When we told the officer we were heading to the game, he wished us well, let my friend off with a warning, and informed us that the person in the bed of the truck could legally drink as long as the driver could not touch the alcohol. We reminded the officer that we were only teenagers, and we all had a good laugh at his expense for basically giving his blessing to minors to consume alcohol.
When we finally arrived at Busch Stadium II, I remember gazing in wonder at the beautiful arches that adorned the top of the stadium. I immediately fell in love with this place. There was something almost magical about it. This may sound cliche, but I remember feeling like this place, this game, this team, completed me. It seemed to fill a void that had been missing in my life. Many religions tell us that our relationship with God makes us feel whole, and completes us. In my case, I already had my relationship with God, but it wasn’t until this game, that I knew Heaven was a real place; and it was only about 170 miles from my house. By the 3rd inning, I forgot about my past allegiance to the “Lovable Losers”, and was fully entrenched in the glory that is Cardinals baseball. I now gleefully anticipate every February when pitchers and catchers report, every Opening Day, every home game, every away game (even the west coast games that start at 9 or later). I own dozens of pieces of Cardinals memorabilia, several jerseys and hats, three pets named after Cardinals players or the city itself, and two Cardinals tattoos (pictures to follow).
Thinking back on how my love for the Cardinals began, I realize that I am a believer in the Nature side of the Nature vs. Nurture debate. My dad tried everything he could to nurture me to be a Cubs fan, but nature had another plan, and thank God it did. My heart always belonged in St. Louis, it just took me a while to understand it. Thanks again, Mr. Powell, for the opportunity to contribute to this page. I’ve got some great ideas for future posts, so if you are reading this now, check back often. There are some real exciting things I will be posting on here.
12 in ’12
Poste by JE Powell
Wow. One, little, simple word, but it sums up what is, in this writer’s opinion, one of the greatest endings to a baseball season ever. woW. There, I wrote the word backwards and it still has the same impact, even if it looks a little weird.
I must confess, back in late August I had wrote the Cardinals off. Now, to be absolutely clear, I did not (nor would I ever, even in the worst of times) stop watching and paying attention to my beloved Cardinals. But conventional wisdom (which I admittedly stole from a M*A*S*H episode) is that a team can pick up a game a week. The Cards were 10 1/2 with about six weeks to play. I even commented to a co-worker in late August that the Cards would have to go 23-8 in September (which only has 30 days in that month, so how the Cards would play one more game than there are days in that calender month, I do not know) and at that time Atlanta was playing pretty well. Stictly from anecdotal evidence, I think most Cardinals fans felt that the Cards were not playing like a playoff team and were more than like NOT going to make the playoffs. I am often wrong, but I cannot remember a time when I have been so happy to have been wrong.
In 2006 I had a mantra all season long that continued down to the last day of the season. “The Cardinals just have to make the playoffs.”
“But the Cardinals have had two eight game losing streaks and a seven game losing streak and even got beat by nearly 20 runs by the Chicgo White Sox,” I had someone say to me.
“The Cardinals just have to make the playoffs,” I replied. Over and over again I said it. Every Cubs fan was rubbing it in, even though the Cubs finsihed 30 games under .500 that season. “The Cardinals just have to make the playoffs.” And in 2006, they did. By 1 1/2 games over the Houston Astros and the Cards ended the sesaon with a nearly pitiful 83-78 record. I think that was the 2nd worst record of a playoff team ever (the 2005 Padres finished 82-80 and won their division). I kept the faith, as it were. But 2011 was different.
This season, it didn’t look like the Cards would make the playoffs. They were not playing very well and they had seemingly too far back to make the playoffs. But then something happened. I don’t know what happened, but something obviously did. They started winning and Atlanta started losing. All through September the Cardinals kept winning and the Braves kept losing. The Cards swept the Braves in a three games series and picked up three games towards the Wild Card. In fact, I think the 2011 Cardinals need a nickname like the 1934 Cardinals “Gas House Gang” and I present to you, my faithful reader, the 2011 Cardinals “The Wild Cards”. It just fits. It’s nearly perfect, if a bit on the nose, I guess. But it sums up everything nicely. On the last day of the regular season, the Cards beat Houston 8-0 and the Braves lost to the Phillies 4-3 in 13 innings. The Cards were in.
But really, what were they going to do? They had to face a Phillies team that won 102 games and had what many predicted would be one of the best starting pitching rotations ever. No way the Cards are going to beat Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, or Roy Oswalt three times. “The Cardinals just have to make the playoffs.” The 2006 and 2011 Cardinals proved that that mantra is one that every Cardinals fan should keep in mind. Because once the playoffs start anything can happen. Case in point, the 2011 Cardinals. In the NLDS (National League Division Series) the Cards were down 2-1 in the series and had to face Roy Oswalt and then Roy Halladay. The Cards won game 4 to tie the series and then Chris Carpenter beat Roy Halladay 1-0 in one of the best pitching duels I have ever seen. NLDS Champion St. Louis Cardinals.
The Cardinals moved on, beating a team that many prediccted would win the World Series, to face the Milwaukee Brewers, a teamt he Cardinals haven’t faced in the playoffs since 1982 (when I was merely a year old). Nyjer Morgan, or Tony Plush, or whatever silly name he wants to give himself, made some silly comments (back in September) towards the Cardinals about them watching the Milwaukee Brewers on TV while Cards players sat at home. I love it when opposing players get cocky against the elder statesmen Cardinals. The Cardianls team, much to their credit, shrugged it off and did not retaliate. At least not with words. They did it with their bats and their bullpen. The Cards split in Milwaukee the first two games and then won on the road in Milwaukee (the toughest home team in all of baseball this year) to clinch a spot in the World Sereis. I certainly hope Nyjer Morgan enjoyed watching the Cardinals play in the world series. I am sure he has a very large, nice TV with high-def and could see everything nice and clear.
The World Series this year wasn’t the best played World Series, but damn was it entertaining. And Historic (with a capital “H”). The Cards won game one, then dropped game two in the top of the ninth inning when Texas scored two runs to take a 2-1 lead in the game. They headed to Texas for game 3. An Historic game because of one man, the true Prince of Baseball, Mr. Albert Pujols. Game 3 of the world series was a Wild (Cards) game, to say the least, but Albert Pujols put on, quite possibly the greatest offensive show you will ever see in the World Series. Sure, players have hit 3 home runs in a WS game (Ruth, twice, and Reggie Jackson), had 5 hits (Paul Molitor) and 6 RBI (Hideki Matsui) and 4 runs scored. But from what the experts said no one has ever had 3 HR, 4 Runs, 5 Hits, and 6 RBI…IN THE SAME GAME! Historic. When I saw Albert hit his first homerun, as soon as he made contact I said out loud, “It’s gone.” Just matter of factly. The sound of the ball off of a Cardinals bat in the WS is beautiful. Just Beautiful.
The Cards then dropped games 4 and 5 went to the Texas Rangers and the Series headed back to St. Louis with the Cards down 3 games to 2. I felt that whoever won game five would win the series. In game 6, when Texas went up 7-4 I thought, well, the Cards put in a hell of a season and the Rangers were definately a worthy adversary, my hats off to them. I kept watching, hoping for a miracle. I need to pause for just a moment to explain something. When the Cards fall behind or it looks like they are going to lose, I just assume they will. My reason is that if something great happens, it all the more great becasue I didn’t expect it, but if they do lose, at least I am not as dejected as I would have otherwise been. It’s a sort of defense mechanism. I didn’t give up, but I was kind of protecting myself, I guess.
So, the Cards are down 7-4 in game 6 when Allen Craig hit a solo shot to pull the Cardinals within two. Flashforward to the bottom of the ninth. 7-5, Cards sill behind. Pujols on 2nd, Lance Berkman on 1st. David Fresse up to bat. Has there ever been a more appropriate surname for a player in the history of baseball? David Freese had ice running through his veins. He gets ahead in the count 3-2, the Cards have two outs and are down to their last strike and that beautiful sound again, the ball of a Cardinal bat. A two run triple. Game tied.
Top of the 10th, one on and Josh Hamilton is up to bat. He swings at a ball a little low and outside and sends the ball over the fence for a two run home run. I texted my friend and fellow Cardinals fan (he is also the “official” STL: Fear the Red photographer, though I don’t post many pics) and said, “What was the point of the Cardinals tying the game up just to give the lead right back?” The Cardinals go to bat in the bottom of the 10th behind by two. Back to back hits, a bunt, and a ground out make it 9-8 Texas with two outs and the Cardinals have a player in scoring position. Lance Berkman gets up to bat and falls behind 1-2 in the count. Once again, the Cardinals are down to their last strike. If Berkman swings and misses the Rangers are champs. Oh, look at that, a single THE GAME IS FREAKING TIED AGAIN!!!! At this point I am curled up in a fetal position unable to take the drama any longer. OK, not really, but I was in my head, at any rate.
In the top of the 11th the Tony La Russa sends out Jake Westbrook to pitch, who hasn’t pitch in like a month. I’m thinking, oh no. But, oh yes, he holds them and keeps the game tied. Bottom of the 11th and up to bat is David “Absolute Zero” Freese. I say “Absolute Zero” because his veins are so ice cold that all molecular activity has stopped and he is no longer human. With one swing of the bat, a walk off home run, Absolute Zero has transcended baseball and become a Cardinals legend. I know with metaphysical certitude that one day when my baby daughter is older I will relive that moment over and over and over again as a bed time story. It was the greatest moment in my Cardinals lifetime, beating out Wainwrights curve to Carlos Beltran.The Cards made history for the 2nd time in the WS becoming the first team to come back from a two run deficit TWICE in the 9th inning or later. The also became the first WS team to score in the 8th, 9th, 10, and 11th innings of a World Series game. In my opinion, and I am sure the opinion of nearly all Cardinals fans, this was the Greatest World Series Game of Our Generation. Perhaps ever. Only time will tell, I suppose.
There was only one thing that would make this game better. A victory in game 7. A loss would diminish the heroics and the drama of game 6 in my mind. Game 7 was a good game, but couldn’t possibly rival game 6 and it didn’t. What it did do, though was, three fold: 1) Gave David “Absolute Zero” two more RBI (to tie the game again, so less) making him the current record holder for most RBI in the post season with 21, 2) Made Game 6 a perhaps legendary status, and 3) Made the 2011 St. Louis Cardinals World Series CHAMPIONS!!!!!!!!!
This season was one of the most memorable seasons I have ever seen, not just as a Cardinals fan but in general. All the Cardinals have done since last August is come back. They came back from 10 1/2 down to win the Wild Card; they came back from a 2-1 series deficit to win the NLDS; they came back FIVE times in game 6 of the WS to win; and they came back from a 3-2 series deficit in the WS.
Because when all is said and done, “All they have to do is make the playoffs.”
JE is a life long Cardinals fan and is still pinching himself. He can be seen very infrequently tweeting on Twitter at @stlfear_the_red and has a Facebook Fan page, though he has no idea what the address is. The Cardinals, at this time, have won the world series every year that he has had a blog.
* JE apolgizes for the lenght of the post and any grammatical and spelling errors. He will attempt to correct any mistakes that are pointed out and will eventually re-read through the long, long post to try and correct any he sees. That might not be for awhile, however, because he has alot of other UCB blogs to read through. Please forgitve him any mistakes that he has made.
Posted by JE Powell
Well, the Cards have made it to the NLCS and must face the formidable Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers have a tough hitting line-up anchored by Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder, but the Brewers also have a good 1-2 punch in Greinke and Marcum for their starting pitching. In my opinion, and the opinion of many experts at ESPN, it should be a very good, hard fought series.
The is some bad blood between these two teams in part because of an in-game argument between Nyjer Morgan of the Brewers and Chris Carpenter of the Cards. They had a shouting match a few months ago and then after that game Morgan made some tweets refering to Albert Pujols as “Alberta”. On October 8th, Zack Greinke of the Brewers game out and said that Chris Carpenter is a phony. I realize that since I am a Cardinals fan, I am a bit prejudiced, but I haven’t read or heard anything about any Cardinals players coming out and mocking the Brewers in return. That could be due to the fact that the Brewers are trying to play mind games with the Cards, or the Brewers are just a young team without much post season experience and do not know how to handle it and the Cardinals are a veteran team that has “been there” before and carry themselves with poise. Take your pick, but any which way you go with it, it certainly has increased media and public attention (the ratings for the series will prove the latter statement and a quick glance at the NLCS page on ESPN should be sufficient to prove the former).
I will certainly be cheering my heart out for the Cardinals and I most assuredly want them to go to the World Series, but despite a few ill conceived comments from the Brewers players, I think overall the Cards and Brewers have had an otherwise amiable history over the last many seasons. One way or another, it should be a great series and I look for it to go six or seven games.
Posted by JE Powell
The title of this post is also a chant that can be heard whenever you go to a Cardinals home game. Right now the Cardinals need our support, perhaps more than at any point this season. With tonight’s 6-5 victory over the Mets, coupled with the Braves 4-0 loss to the Marlins, the Cards sit a mere 1.5 games behind the Braves for the Wild Card. The Braves have 6 games left and the Cardinals have 7, so it’s going to go down to the wire.
Right now the Cardinals are playing solid baseball, predicated on the notion that efficient pitching and timely hitting wins games. The Cards finished 3-1 in a four game series against the Phillies, a team that many experts think will represent the National League in the World Series.
The season is drawing to a close and the Cardianls are definately hot right now, but they need to keep winning to have a shot at a playoff berth. After they finish this series with the Mets, the Cards must face the Cubs and Astros. The Cubs will not give in and that will be a tough series and, although they have not had a good season, Houston could play spoiler. It’s not an easy road ahead. So, put on your Cardinals apparel, tune in to Fox Sports Midwest and CHEER, CHEER, CHEER!