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The one where Mike Shannon’s had enough - A recap from May 29, 2017

Join the club, Moonman.

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

It was the Cardinals second game of the season and the team was facing the Cubs. I was up in the stands, surrounded by Cubs fans misquoting Shakespeare and fighting amongst each other over spilled beer and crushed dreams. But amidst all that, there was a moment that stuck out to me. The Cubs had runners on first and second. A single was slapped over near the left field corner. Randal Grichuk charged the ball and threw it home trying to keep the run from scoring. The problem with this throw is that it allowed the runner on first to advance to third with only one out. Of course, the next hitter bunted that run in and the Cardinals were quickly down two runs to zero. The Cardinals went on to lose that game two runs to one. I complained about this play for several minutes and even to a coworker the following day. It seemed so small at the time, but not preventing that runner from advancing to third ultimately cost the Cardinals the game and that was incredibly frustrating.

In the game on Monday a similar play occurred, with Jose Martinez throwing to third base and allowing a runner to advance into scoring position at second. Of course, players are human and that is what makes the game fun and interesting. Mistakes will happen. But these specific mistakes are preventable. They are not a bad hop or losing a ball in the sun. These are mental mistakes. They are the basic fundamentals of the game and sometimes they can be incredibly costly. So no one, except maybe some members of the Cardinals, had a problem with Mike Shannon letting loose his thoughts on these mistakes:

I didn’t watch the game live - I went kayaking with my dog and it was wonderful - but I did watch the condensed game. And really what else is there to say? Mike Leake was good, but not great. He made two pretty major mistakes - one to Chase Utley and one to Cody Bellinger that went for home runs. He started off the seventh with his only walk of the day to Chris Taylor who then came around to score later in the inning. Other than that he went seven innings with six strikeouts with a slider that looked plain nasty at times. Certainly enough to keep the team in the game. The bullpen gave up its obligatory run of the game in the eighth when Logan Forsythe homered off Kevin Siegrist who was really quite lucky to have only surrendered that lone run.

The main problem was the Cardinals were owned by Rich Hill. The team really did absolutely nothing until the fourth when Tommy Pham walked and Matt Carpenter was hit by a pitch. The two then executed a double steal to put the runners on second and third with one out and the Cardinals were unable to bring them in. On the day the Cardinals had five total hits. Even after being gifted two errors and two walks, the lack of timely hitting and extra-base hits hurt the team in a big way, leaving them only one run to show for their efforts.

other notes

  • This, from Sunday’s game, was cool:
  • Paul DeJong also made his debut today and he can officially call himself a Cardinal now that he has been thrown out on the bases by an almost comically large amount

here is this thing:

Source: FanGraphs

On Tuesday Michael Wacha toes the rubber against Kenta Maeda with an earlier start time of 6:05p.m. CST.