(BaseballStL) -- Four runs. Four runs in their last five games and three of them were shutouts. The Cardinals haven't scored in 24 innings. They've also lost four of their last five games.
The Cardinals are now just four games above .500 (44-40). Last season through June 2013, the Cards had posted a 49-32 record, a 13 game difference between the two years.
If the Redbirds took 2013's season record through June and compared it to that of the 2014 Milwaukee Brewers, the Cardinals would be two games back from first place in the Central, instead of being currently 6.5 games back.
But that didn't happen, because the Cards generate little offense. They even loaded the bases with no outs in the fourth inning Tuesday against Tim Lincecum, but two strike outs and a ground out later that Cardinals walked away from the inning and the game without any runs.
Manager Mike Matheny admitted after the game that the fourth inning was the turning point in the game, also making an impact on starter Marco Gonzales who gave up a three spot in the bottom half of the fourth.
Matheny shook up the lineup Tuesday, opting to play recently recalled outfielder Oscar Taveras in right, moving Allen Craig to left field and sitting Matt Holliday out. Sure, it's only been one game with Taveras back, but Craig and Yadier Molina are struggling.
Molina has just three hits in his last 16 days for a .188 average over that time and dropping his season average to .281. Craig has played a little better, grabbing just 5 hits over his last 22 days.
And it isn't just Molina and Craig, Redbird hitters in the number 6, 7 and 8 spots are hitting .256, .215 and .216 respectively. The mediocre production they're receiving for the top of the lineup is being compounded by the inability of the botttom to move any runners around and put anyone on base.