With pitching the wild card, offense needs to be steady force

With pitching the wild card, offense needs to be steady force

ST. LOUIS, MO - JULY 7: Starter Kyle Lohse #26 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Miami Marlins at Busch Stadium on July 7, 2012 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

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by Brian Feldman / BaseballStL

KMOV.com

Posted on July 21, 2012 at 12:23 PM

Updated Saturday, Jul 21 at 2:43 PM

(BaseballStL) -- Well, we knew it couldn't possibly last, could it?  Through games on May 9th the Redbirds offense was nothing short of super human.  A 20-11 record...and you know how many runs the Cards averaged in those initial 20 wins? 

Nearly 7 and a half.  That's insane.

No one does that. 

So the fact this offense has come back down to earth isn't much of a surprise.  Carlos Beltran wasn't going to hit 50 home runs (which is about what he was on pace for towards the end of May).  Rafael Furcal wasn't going to hit .383 (which is what he was doing on May 13th).  And Jon Jay certainly wasn't going to finish the season with a .472 on-base percentage (where he was in early May).

But with GM John Mozeliak giving just about all of his attention to the pitching front on the trade market, he doesn't have time to worry about offense.  An offense that's scored just 2.7 runs per game since the All Star break.

And those that were on fire early have cooled off considerably of late.  Beltran hasn't hit a homer since June 24th and is batting .188 this month.  Furcal has struggled so much Mike Matheny dropped him to 8th in the batting order yesterday.  And we've all seen some of the at-bats Lance Berkman has put together since coming off the DL. 

It's one thing to have to fix one part of your ball club to give it a legitimate chance of competing at the end of the season.  But it's an entirely different matter when you've got more holes popping up in other areas you weren't expecting.

It's like that game Whac-A-Mole.  Remember that?  Every time you smack one of those things another one pops up somewhere.  And it never ends does it?

John Mozeliak can't afford to play that game and put together a division winner.  Let alone a World Series champion.

You fix the bullpen, and a leak pops up in the starting rotation.  You address the rotation, 2nd base becomes a big problem.  2nd base gets attention, center field starts to leak.  It goes on and on and on and on and on and on. 

At some point you just need to roll out the team you've got and hope things get fixed on their own because you're not going to redirect all of your minor league assets into major league contributors simply to increase your chances of winning this year by a little bit.  Especially when you just won the whole darn thing last year and don't feel any pressure to go all in this time around. 

The pitching will be addressed.  I have no doubt in my mind about that.  But if this offense doesn't start scoring runs again (and I don't mean at the rate it was for the first month and a half) then it won't matter how many arms John Mozeliak goes out and gets. 

The Cards won't be playing in October.

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