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My five favourite St. Louis Cardinals moments of 2015 (so far)

It's a lazy Sunday morning here in Cardinal Country. Let's consider, for a moment, some of the best moments the 2015 season has had to offer so far.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, everybody.

So, I'm going to just level with you: I can't think of anything to write about this morning. Like, at all.

I've got one big idea in mind, but it's the sort of thing I need a couple hours to research before I even start, and I don't have that kind of time this morning. I've got a thing about Alex Reyes I want to write still, but that's a post that will need screenshots, so again, time consuming. And right at this exact moment, I'm sitting here staring at my computer screen, at the awful white blank of the text editor box, and I simply cannot think of a thing. It doesn't happen very often to me; usually, even if I'm struggling for a topic, I can just start writing, and something will sort of begin to form itself out of my thoughts. I am nothing if not accomplished in the ways of seat-of-ones-pants bullshitting.

Right now, Just nothing. I'm really, really feeling tapped out at this exact moment.

I'm also, given where the Cardinals currently sit in terms of record, at 34 games over .500 having not yet reached the three-quarter mark of the season, having a tough time coming up with anything critical to say at this exact moment. And by critical I don't necessarily mean negative; I literally mean I'm feeling so good about the club right now that any kind of critical thinking about them is difficult. Don't worry; it'll come back. But at quarter after seven on Sunday, the 16th of August? It's tough.

So what we're going to do is have ourselves a little toss-off column; the sort of thing Sunday mornings were really designed for. We're going to just revisit a few really fun moments from the season so far, before we watch Carlos Martinez hopefully turn out another amazing moment this afternoon.

These are my five favourite moments to date of the 2015 season, counted down from five to one. Why a list? Because the format lends structure to what might otherwise be just another rambling red baron post, offering concrete constraints and a nice skeleton upon which to layer shape. Also, I hear lists are pretty popular on this internet thing, and I'm hoping to make some of that big information superhighway money soon.

Without further ado, and all that.

Number Five: The Six-Run Inning

Cards at Milwaukee, 7th August

So, what's so great about this moment?

This particular inning, which happened to be the fifth of what was eventually a Cardinal blowout of the Brewers, was exciting simply by dint of it being a big inning for the Redbirds, one in which they scored six runs, but it was also exciting for another reason. This was maybe the only time this entire season when I felt like we were seeing the exact, perfect ideal of what this Cardinal offense is laid out to be. The rally began with three doubles in a row, one coming off the bat of Matt Carpenter, as doubles are often wont to do (and on a 3-2 count, which seems almost comically apropos), continued on through a couple gutty at-bats by Wong and Jason Heyward, and was then capped off by a blast to right-center field by Randal Grichuk. This felt like the idealised version of the Cardinal offense; that chain-link mechanism that so often feels high-effort and inefficient working perfectly, as multiple quality hitters all put good swings on good pitches to hit, and drove those pitches when they got them. It's also incredibly heartening to me whenever Grichuk drives the ball to the opposite field, for whatever reason.

This Cardinal offense has very rarely felt explosive in 2015. But in this particular inning, we saw exactly how this offense would look, if it looked exactly like it was supposed to look. If that makes any sense.

Also, Brandon Moss had a double, and I feel like that deserves a little extra bit of recognition.

Number Four: Carpenter Gets the Bunt Down

Marlins at Cardinals, 14th August

So, what's so great about this moment?

I think it's mostly fair to say I mostly hate bunting, mostly. I'm of the Earl Weaver school of thought on sacrifice bunts: you only have so many outs (in fact, outs are the only concretely limited quantity you have in a given game, for the most part), so why give them away?

However, that's mostly sacrifice bunts, which are so often self-defeating and, at the very least, sacrifice the great for the good, in a way that is almost always reductive. However, a player bunting for a hit is a gorgeous, gorgeous play, particularly when it works. And to see Matt Carpenter do so in this particular situation, in a scoreless tie, with the infield defense back and shifted, was just perfect. Of course, listening to Rick Horton then act as if Carpenter dropping down a perfect bunt for an RBI single proved not that Matt Carpenter is a brilliant, amazing baseball player who saw an opportunity presented by the opposition doing a dumb thing and took it, but rather that sabermetricians and their computers are idiots and that all shifts are foolish was rather frustrating, but sometimes you just have to take the bad with the good.

Number Three: The Heyward Slide

Cubs at Cardinals, 28th June

So, what's so great about this moment?

Seriously, look again at this catch, with some distance and time to consider, and just look at how far Jason Heyward has to go to catch this ball. And then how far he slides once he does. And the fact the ball is coming off the bat of Kris Bryant? Just a bonus.

We've seen some spectacular defense from Jason Heyward in his first year in St. Louis. This one, though, is my favourite.

Number Two: Carlos Goes to Eleven

Cardinals at Dodgers, 5th June

So, what's so great about this moment?

To be honest, this game was not the best outing Carlos Martinez has had this season. If I had to pick out one game for that distinction, it might honestly by the previous outing Martinez had against the Dodgers, when he gave up just a single hit and no runs, striking out eight over seven innings, in a start at the tail end of May. However, facing Los Angeles for the second game in a row, El Gallo put together what is my favourite performance of his all season, when he fanned eleven Dodgers in a 6-2 win. He walked four, mostly as a result of the crazy movement his pitches featured on this particular day. But for all that, this was the most overwhelming we've seen Martinez this season, and there are a couple breaking bals in this video clip that should probably be classified as pornographic.

Number One: The Longest Victory

Pirates at Cardinals, 3rd May

So, what's so great about this moment?

This was, for my money, the game of the year. A fourteen-inning classic, started by Michael Wacha, which saw the Cardinals absolutely empty the bullpen, come back to tie the game in the twelfth inning, and ultimately win on a walk-off by Kolten Wong. The game had a little bit of everything, and had the added attraction of being the finishing touch on a sweep of Pittsburgh, which I have to admit felt incredible. It was also the debut of Miguel Socolovich, who has a feel of a bit of a good-luck charm this season, and the near-impossibility of Peter Bourjos providing some offensive heroics.

I'm sure when I think back on the 2015 season after it's over, there will be plenty of moments that eclipse these here. At least, I hope so; otherwise, things may not have gone as well as we would like the rest of the way. But for now, when I think of the best this team has offered, these are the moments that come to mind for me. What are yours?

Oh, and an honourable mention has to go to each and every one of Carlos Martinez's water cup pyramids, and his home run celebrations with Matt Carpenter. I love that goofy son of a bitch.