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Happenings Down South: Up and Down

The division-leading Redbirds look to build momentum over the next couple weeks.

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Redbirds are still in first in the PCL American South Division, using their 26-18 record to maintain a 3.5 game lead over the team with one of my favorite team names in baseball, the New Orleans Baby Cakes. The Birds closed out this last two week stretch with a 3 game winning streak to win the series against Colorado Springs, after losing 10 of their previous 14. Memphis had a particularly rough go with Nashville, losing 6 of 8 over the last two weeks to the Sounds.

Power At The Plate

Patrick Wisdom has been tearing the cover off the ball as of late, particularly the last week or so, with multi-hit games 4 of his last 5 starts. Patrick went an impressive 19 of 42 since my last column. What impresses me the most, is the hits aren’t home runs. Wisdom only has 5 homers on the season, and before he hit one Saturday against Colorado Springs he hadn’t hit one since May 1st.

Before he was called back up to the Cardinals on Friday, Tyler O’Neill had been on a roll as well. Tyler has been streaky since coming back to the Redbirds on the last day of April. He closed out his latest stint in Memphis going 6 of 19 with 4 homers and 7 RBIs.

As has been the case all year, Oscar Mercado is still hitting fairly well. This last series against Colorado Springs has been pretty strong as Oscar went 11 of 17 in his last 5 games, although he only had 7 RBIs (17 total for the season) since my last column.

Pitching Struggles

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at San Diego Padres Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

As I mentioned last time, the situation with Adam Wainwright has really impacted the Redbirds’ pitching staff. To me, Dakota Hudson has been the biggest beneficiary to that. In his last 2 starts, Dakota has a 1.00 ERA with 7 strikeouts. Daniel Poncedeleon has emerged as one of the other pitching leaders with Jack Flaherty and John Gant spending extended time with the big club. Daniel and Dakota are closely leading the team in ERA (2.70 and 2.76), but Poncedeleon has an awesome PCL leading 54 strikeouts. Austin Gomber is right behind him with in 3rd with 48.

Looking Ahead

The Redbirds are kicking off a 9 game homestand today, against the Oklahoma City Dodgers for the next 4, followed by a 5 game set against Colorado Springs. They’ll close out the next two weeks on the road with 5 games in New Orleans, taking on the 2nd place Baby Cakes.