Skip to content

Watch out, Nationals. Here come the Cardinals!

Oct 5, 2012, 9:30 PM EST

Matt Holliday Getty Images

The Cardinals won in Atlanta on Friday and will host the Nationals in the NLDS beginning Sunday despite the fact that…

- they got outhit but the Braves 12-6

- they had just two extra-base hits to the Braves’ four

- their hitters failed to draw even a single walk, while their pitchers gave up three

That’s a recipe for a quiet plane ride home. Yet the Cardinals are returning to St. Louis triumphant thanks to some dreadful defense by the Braves — just their fourth three-error game of the year — and their ability to capitalize on mistakes.

Which is what we should have come to expect from these Cardinals. They’re at their best when they’re not very good.

The Cardinals have won two World Series since 2000. The teams that won the championships had the club’s seventh- and 11th-best records of the 12 years. Those Albert Pujols-led clubs won as many as 105 games, yet it was the teams that won 83 games in 2006 in 90 games in 2011 that claimed titles.

There’s no reason this Cardinals team can’t go far, too. While they used their most successful starter in Kyle Lohse today, they still have Adam Wainwright ready to go Sunday. Then they can throw Jaime Garcia at home, where he’s almost always successful, and Chris Carpenter and Lohse on the road.

Offensively, the Cardinals are more than a match for the Nats, scoring 765 runs to Washington’s 731 this year. If they’re still perhaps the lesser team overall, well, that just means they have the Nationals right where they want them.

Latest Posts
  1. Matt Kemp has officially been traded to the Padres

    Dec 18, 2014, 11:27 PM EST

    matt kemp dodgers getty Getty Images

    It took long enough, but Matt Kemp has finally been traded to the Padres.

  2. Padres acquire catcher Derek Norris from Athletics

    Dec 18, 2014, 9:30 PM EST

    Derek Norris Getty Getty Images

    The Padres continue to overhaul their lineup while the A’s continue to unload.

  3. Delmon Young would prefer to re-sign with the Orioles

    Dec 18, 2014, 8:46 PM EST

    Delmon Young AP

    Young, 29, batted .302 with seven home runs and .779 OPS (120 OPS+) over 255 plate appearances this past season.

  4. Mariners sign Mark Lowe

    Dec 18, 2014, 7:50 PM EST

    Mark Lowe AP AP

    Lowe began his career with Seattle and had his best season with the club in 2009.

  5. Report: Josh Johnson is “on the verge” of re-signing with the Padres

    Dec 18, 2014, 6:07 PM EST

    San Diego Padres Photo Day Getty Images

    Johnson missed the entire 2014 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in late April.

  6. Ichiro is getting “some consideration” from the Orioles

    Dec 18, 2014, 6:00 PM EST

    Ichiro Suzuki Getty Images

    Does Ichiro really have one more year left in him?

  7. Royals designate Johnny Giavotella for assignment

    Dec 18, 2014, 5:17 PM EST

    Johnny Giavotella Getty Images

    Giavotella is a career .315 hitter with an .835 OPS and as many walks as strikeouts in nearly 2,000 plate appearances at Triple-A.

  8. The Walter White of the Biogenesis case pleads guilty

    Dec 18, 2014, 4:47 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 4.46.36 PM

    He’s probably not the one who knocks. Indeed, this crew seemed so amateurish he probably called first to make sure it was a good time for everyone.

  9. What Communists thought about baseball in 1934

    Dec 18, 2014, 3:34 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 3.21.56 PM

    Between Cuba and North Korea, it’s been a big couple of days for communism. Let’s see what communists thought about baseball once upon a time.

  10. Royals sign Kris Medlen for two years, with option for 2017

    Dec 18, 2014, 3:18 PM EST

    kris medlen getty Getty Images

    Medlen missed all of this year recovering from his second Tommy John elbow surgery.

  11. Must-Click Link: Tyler Kepner salutes Sy Berger and baseball cards of the 1980s

    Dec 18, 2014, 1:06 PM EST

    Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 1.05.44 PM

    Baseball card collecting in the post-bicycle spokes, pre-crash world of the 1980s.

  12. Report: Matt Kemp has arthritis in both hips

    Dec 18, 2014, 12:17 PM EST

    Matt Kemp Getty Images

    And the Padres “continue to consult medical experts.”

  13. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves on the United States’ conquest of baseball in Cuba

    Dec 18, 2014, 11:39 AM EST

    Cake

    Let’s pump the brakes a bit on the imminent MLB takeover of Cuba.

Featured video

Cubs shore up rotation with Jon Lester
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. M. Cabrera (4336)
  2. W. Myers (3595)
  3. M. Kemp (3561)
  4. M. Morse (2589)
  5. W. Miley (2522)
  1. C. Headley (2459)
  2. J. Lester (2439)
  3. M. Scherzer (2137)
  4. J. Kang (2102)
  5. J. Upton (2065)