FanPost

On restraint (or... save the heart attack for when the zombie space aliens attack!)

Before this season began, people were debating whether this team would win 60 games or whether it would hold on and break even at 82. Almost no one expected that the pitching would hold up to the extent that it has, and virtually every surprise that we've had this season has been an overwhelmingly positive one: Wellemeyer cutting down on the BBs, while maintaining the strikeouts; Izturis getting on base; Lohse being able to go deep in games right off of the bat; even Skippy has been far superior offensively to anything we could have hoped for. So far, the only really serious bad surprise we've had is that Troy Glaus has been having trouble getting his power going, but the team around him has been able to at least pick up the slack*.

The point is, however, that the team is playing very well: far better than anyone could have predicted--virtually no one would have picked the cardinals to open the season by winning each of their first four series, yet here we are, in that very position. Not only that, however, but the team is really competing in every game we play in. They are clawing back from deficits, even after seeing the bullpen cough up leads and fall behind.

So, why the hypercriticality? I'm seeing harsh criticism fall on any and all players who don't live up to a Pujolsian standard of performance. It seems like anyone who falls short on a particular play gets invective thrown at them, despite the overall performance that they might have had on that particular day, even. This is a really long season, and this team has been playing very well to date, and doing so in a very entertaining, encouraging, and engaging manner. It really doesn't make much sense to me to get all that bent out of shape over particular in game decisions at this point, considering how long the season is going to go.

This team has serious problems with depth and health, and if it is going to last through the season performing at a high level, this means that the players are going to have to get rotated in and out of the lineup pretty frequently. There isn't a clear set of three ideal starting outfielders, and Glaus probably isn't at 100%, and is going to need days off, regardless of who we have to spell him on his days off. Two of the three of Izturis, Miles and Kennedy have to be in the starting lineup on any given day, at least until Ryan is off of the DL. Rico Washington will be back in Memphis when Ryan is off of the DL. Why get bent out of shape regarding these things, which are either constraints of the current roster (and hence, probably unchangeable until Julyish) or are temporary fixes with preordained endpoints and solutions?

Being critical is fine, and being unhappy with decisions is also fine. But, I can't really see why there is much reason to get seethingly upset at the Cardinals, or even at particular players, at this point in time. The team is playing beautifully (loss yesterday or no). Let's just enjoy this for now, and at least see if the pitching falls off of the wheels to start marching down to New Busch with pitchforks and torches.

Believe me, the benefits your pets will feel from the decrease yelling will make this attitude worthwhile.

*Franklin's struggles are a bit of a surprise, too, but they were predicted by more than a few people.

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