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Cardinals news and notes: Opening day, Adam Wainwright, and commercials

Yesterday at VEB

Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday the University of Northern Iowa suffered what many are calling the biggest collapse in the history of the NCAA tournament.  Long story short, they were up 69-59 with 31 seconds remaining and somehow lost.  While the Cardinals don't have any meltdowns like that on record in recent memory, it did remind me of a game they blew during the fervent wild card chase in 2011.

On September 22, 2011, after having won 14 of their last 16 games, the Cardinals led the Mets 6-2 entering the top of the 9th, and just three outs away from pulling within one game of the Atlanta Braves for the NL wild card (it was the final year before a second wild card was added).  Jason Motte walked three batters in just a third of an inning and allowed four runs to score, Marc Rzepczynski gave up a hit and run without retiring a single batter, and Fernando Salas allowed one more run to cross the plate before finally retiring the Mets who now had an 8-6 lead.  The Cardinals did not score in the bottom of the 9th and lost the game.  To give you an idea of how big of a collapse it was, here's the Win Probability Chart from Baseball-Reference.

With just six games remaining for each team, the Cardinals now had to make up two games on the Braves.  Luckily, they won four of their final six while the Braves sputtered along to a 1-5 record and the Cardinals famously secured the wild card.  And then they won the World Series so this particular collapse was completely meaningless in the grand scheme but at the time - like a dozen other times during that final month and a half of baseball - it sure felt like the end.

Here's what you may have missed yesterday at VEB:

Opening Day Lineup

Joe Schwarz predicted the Cardinals' opening day lineup versus Pittsburgh in twelve days.  I think Kolten Wong is a bit too high but other than that it looks great.  Especially Matt Holliday at first base with a lefty on the mound.

David Price

After Jason Heyward signed with the Cubs, it was easy to forget how close the Cardinals reportedly were to signing David Price.  Based around a Derrick Goold column, Lil Scooter has the important details here.

Adam Wainwright Projections Results

The VEB community is pretty optimistic on Adam Wainwright and they project him to be worth more than four wins.  Regardless, if he's able to pitch 200+ innings we should all be ecstatic.

Cardinals In Action

Several of the farm teams and the major league club were in action yesterday.  You can read about each here and here.

Cardinals In Commercials

Finally, I explored several commercials from the last few decades featuring players from our favorite team.  Here's one that didn't make the cut but was good in its own right - especially since we kick off the season versus the Pirates this year.

Have a good Tuesday, everyone.