Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Nobody call 9-1-1 (or 9-1-2)


Nine runs.


In one inning.

It's SO MUCH more fun when the Cardinals are the ones scoring those 9 in one inning, like in the 4th on Sunday in SF, than when they're being scored on them...like in the 9th on Monday's home opener against the visiting Reds.  (Still think the DH needs to come to the NL?)

9-1-2:  9 runs, in 1 inning, twice in 2 days.

But it's not a reason to go off the deep end (off either edge).  One of the many cliches you hear in baseball is not to get too high or too low.  There are plenty of good reasons for that.

Take Sunday, for instance.  Matt Cain pitched 2 2/3 innings, and surrendered 9 earned runs.  But, it's one start.  One of probably 33 starts he'll make this year, and we all know who Matt Cain is.  He's a Cy Young-award caliber pitcher who is the number one starter for the reigning world champions.  Opening Day, all he did was throw 6 innings, scattering four hits and striking out eight Dodgers, in what is a pretty potent Los Angeles lineup.  He's pretty good.

A wise man once said, "These are men, not machines."

Cain had an off day Sunday, and the redbirds happened to be lucky enough to be the ones with the bats when that day came around.  I hope it made for as much chaos, fun, and trash-talking in your fantasy leagues as it did mine.

Ah, but those who live by the inverted serious number, die by the inverted serious number.  Those nine runs would come back and be scored at the Cards home opener the next day.  Unfortunately for the Cardinals (and any fantasy owners who had Mitchell Boggs), those 9 runs came against the Cards...in the ninth inning...of a tied game.  Those, my friends, are difficult circumstances to recover from.  And, in case you'd not heard, the Cardinals did not recover from those circumstances, thus dropping the home opener 13-4.

But, these are the 11-time world champs, and this is a deep pitching staff.

A few hours ago (as I type this), Motte's elbow ligament appears to have taken a turn that would make the bullpen, and staff as a whole, a bit more shallow.  Couple that with the fluky performance Boggs turned in the day before that kind of news breaks, and half of Cardinal nation thinks the sky is falling.  To help comfort any of you who may be feeling that way, I just checked the calendar, and found some good news: There are 155 more games to be played this year--more games than several decades of full seasons of the game's history.

I always sort of think there are going to be about 10 games a year where you win a blowout, and ten or so games a year where you're going to lose a blowout.  Baseball reference even has categories for things like this.  The important thing in my mind, in those games, is not to screw yourself for the next day or two or series by burning a bullpen or bench.  Let guys get  their work in, if needed, and just move on the next day.  Which is what the Cards need to do, and as I look up over the screen of this laptop right now, seem to be doing just fine.  Arroyo perfect through 5, and it's now 5-1 good guys, bottom of the 8th.

Can't wait to see who comes in to close this one out.   (c:

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