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Posts Tagged ‘St. Louis Cardinals’

superman emblemIt’s Friday.  There’s people on summer hours.  So, this is probably the last post we do before POI, The Skyline and then your UFC 100 preview.  But, it’s a long one.  So sit back and strap it down.  Your MLB Power Rankings heading into the All-Star Break.

1.) Los Angeles Dodgers (54-31): They’ve got Manny back.  They didn’t struggle without him.  The Giants are playing out of their minds and the Dodgers are still 7 games clear of them.  These guys are making the playoffs obviously, but mark it down.  They are not going to the World Series.  Peak too soon in baseball and you don’t finish strong.

2.) New York Yankees (51-34): Bring it on Red Sox fans.  You’re 5-5 in your last 10, and the Yankees are 8-2.  We told you not to sell on these guys at the start of the season and we’re being validated.  In that stadium, this offense is going to excel like no other offense in the league.  The bullpen issues are starting to clear up with Phil Hughes and Coke.  “And the New York Yankees are going to the World Series!” (circa 2003.  Suck it Red Sox)

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joel pineiroCardinals 5 – Brewers 1: Joel Piniero now has 4 CGs this year.  This was his 7th win and he’s only 7-9 on the season.  But the guy has been lights out for about a month now and it’s starting to worry us as Cubs fans.  The Cardinals are coming into Wrigley this weekend (we’re going to the double-header on Sunday!) and the Cubs need to win 2 out of 3.  Thankfully, we don’t have to face Piniero.  Now, there’s a sentence we thought we’d never write.

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Roy HalladayJ.P. Ricciardi’s phone is going to be ringing off the hook in the next few weeks.  He’s opened the door to trading who we think is the most reliable and most talented pitcher in baseball.  Roy Halladay is an innings eater that has been living in relative obscurity for 12 seasons north of the border.

This is going to be the most talked about name prior to the trade deadline and if he is in fact traded, he’ll have the greatest impact on pennant races going into the 2nd half.  But, who is willing to put together the package required to land Halladay?  It’s going to require prospects, payroll and some onions by a GM willing to risk their future on winning a title in the next two seasons.

We’ve got a few ideas on who fits that persona.

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Tim LincecumGiants 10 – Cardinals 0: Lincecum has returned to form.  Did you have any doubts?  We did.  He’s built like Roy Oswalt and we’ve seen him fall apart in the last few years.  Still, the kid is performing as he should right now.  Perhaps they’re placing $1,000 on the ground for him to reach for after every pitch.  He struck out 8 in a complete game, 2-hit shutout.  Six Giants contributed by driving in at least one run.  The Giants are dangerous in the NL West.  Beware Dodgers.  You’re one injury away from falling from grace.

Astros 3 – Padres 1: Speaking of the Roy Oswalt, he felt it would be necessary to nearly match Lincecum on this night.  He struck out 8 as well but allowed a run unlike TIMMY!  Pudge and El Caballo chipped in with an RBI each.  The Padres have got to start selling parts soon.  Peavy and Young are hurt.  They’re not competing this year.  What position do they need help at the most?  We say corner outfielders.

Cubs 3 – Pirates 1: We won?  What?  Rich Harden pitched a gem?  PEDs?  Oh…we played the Pirates.  Ok.  Not a big surprise, then.  Milton Bradley contributed in a positive way!  Our favorite Cubs this year consist of Andres Blanco, Ted Lilly and Angel Guzman.  Not much to cheer about there.  SELL!

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joel pineiroCardinals 3 – Mets 0: Joel Pineiro has two complete games this season, both of them shutouts.  This guy has a career 4.50 ERA and had 3 shutouts total coming into this season.  Is Dave Duncan what Leo Mazzone was supposed to be?  Just without three of the greatest pitchers of all-time?  The Mets are going to struggle mightily over the next few weeks with many of their players on the shelf.  David Wright is going to need to play out of his mind.  MetsBlog has the fans’ confidence rating at 43%.  But, Mets fans were probably jumping off a cliff long ago.  They’d rather the team collapse now than at the end of the season.  The Mets had two as many hits as Albert Pujols had RBIs.  Two.

Tigers 5 – Cubs 4: Get Kevin Gregg out of the closer’s role NOW.  We can’t say much more than that other than Micah Hoffpauir has hit two HRs in the last week that have put the Cubs ahead after the seventh inning.  The Cubs haven’t won either game.  Moving right along…

Blue Jays 7 – Reds 5: Joey Votto was activated in his home town prior to this game but it wasn’t enough for the Rainbow Coalition to beat the Blue Jays. Brian Tallet went 6 scoreless innings and even though every bullpen pitcher but Jason Frasor allowed at least one run, the Jays held on.  Bigger fantasy contributor/surprise this year:  Marco Scutaro or Aaron Hill?

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Cardinals Mets BaseballMets 6 – Cardinals 4: K-Rod picked up save number 19 and the Mets are still above the .500 mark.  After hearing about Carlos Beltran hitting the DL (fantasy, d’oh!) the Mets are going to be in trouble for run production for the next two weeks.  Beltran has been their only consistent performer all year in both the average and power department.  The middle of the Mets lineup not features a power starved David Wright, Fernando Tatis and Ryan Church.  Can someone explain to us how the Cardinals are 39-32?  Pujols is the only guy on that team has done anything of note all season.  Carpenter is bound for a DL trip at some point in the near future.  If they win 83 games in the regular season and make the playoffs we’ll take a wrecking ball to that new stadium in the gateway city.

Braves 2 – Cubs 0: Well, it’s not the warm weather that woke up the Cubs bats.  It was 95 degrees at game time and the humidity was uncomfortable but the Cubs still couldn’t score.  Javy Vasquez has had a nice season, we won’t diminish that.  But the Braves are 3 games under the .500 mark.  They are lacking consistent hitting and their bullpen has been a mess.  Ryan Dempster gave the Cubs a great effort and it was all for nothing.  Ugh.  Isn’t this the time of season where Cubs fans are treated to solid play?  Apparently not.

Rockies 11 – Angels 1: That’s 17 out of 18 for the Rockies.  If the Dodgers weren’t playing so well, the Rockies would be the class of the West.  Brad Hawpe has been a fantasy beast this year.  He drove in 3 in this game and hit his 11th homer of the year.  The Angels Matt Palmer was 6-0 coming into this game but couldn’t get through the 4th inning.  Aaron Cook has been one of the few guys in the majors to conquer pitching at Coors Field and despite this game being held in Anaheim, Cook pitched a solid game.  The only run he allowed was on a Kendry Morales home run.

Athletics 5 – Giants 1: Jonathan Sanchez has all the talent in the world but the command of a pubescent teenager.  The guy just simply can’t throw strikes.  Once he conquers those issues, the Giants will have the best young rotation in baseball.  Their biggest problem has been scoring runs all season.  The A’s are only 31-38 with this win so you have to wonder when Matt Holliday is going to get dealt.

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clint-barmesRockies 5 – Pirates 4: Jim Tracy has the Rockies at 19-5 since he took over for Clint Hurdle.  The solution?  The Rockies are finally hitting.  The bullpens in this game managed to combine for 6.1 scoreless innings in this one as no one scored after the sixth inning. Clint Barmes has been raking lately and he picked up 2 RBIs and scored 2 runs in this game.  Huston Street picked up his 16th save of the year and it only took five pitches to do so.  The Pirates did not have a candle light vigil before this game and wanted to make that very clear.

Orioles 2 – Phillies 1: The Phillies ruined a 10 K performance from Cole Hamels by only providing one run of support.  They went 1-8 on this latest homestand as the Orioles swept them out.  They’re an astounding 13-22 at the band box that is Citizen’s Bank Park this year.  Last year’s world champs have been offensively challenged this year as their home run total has dropped significantly.  Brad Lidge’s six blown saves aren’t helping anything either.

Cardinals 12 – Royals 5: Albery Pujols is the best player in baseball right now.  That took us about 15 minutes to type it was so painful.  The Cardinal first basemen hit home runs 25 and 26 and leads the majors this year.  Can we just say that his name was on that list in 2003 already?  An early Christmas gift perhaps?  Sadly, we think it’s not but as Cubs fans we’d love to rub that in Cardinal fans faces.  One of those homers was also his 3rd grand slam already this year.  Will fat Albert eventually start getting Bonds treatment circa 2002?

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