Tag Archives: St Louis Cardinals

Those Pesky Cardinal Fans ~ Doing it again!

So I’m watching the game tonight and out of the blue comes a huge “BOOOOO” from the stadium.   The crowd evidently didn’t agree with the umpire’s call of a strike against one of their own.  Then the little black box appears on the lower right side of the telly screen and sure enough ….. that ball was a smidgen outside of that little black box, meaning, of course, it was definitely a ball and not a strike.   Now how in the world did they know that?  I mean those “boos” came instantly, no chance to second guess, just johnny-on-the-spot.  The umpire was standing right there at the plate, and the crowd of some 40,00 was, shall we say, somewhere out in left field and they knew it was a bad call.

Cardinal Fans Most Knowledgeable

Cardinal Fans Most Knowledgeable

I remember posting back in 2011 about those Classy Cardinal Fans and how they’re not only the best fans in Major League Baseball, but also the most polite and the most “knowledgeable”.  They won some sort of award for this as I recall.  But, really, this humongous outpouring of boo’s tonight was instantaneous and it was the only time all night they booed.   I don’t get it.

So when I log into WordPress to post this little ditty, the very first blog I see is none other than Craig Calcaterra on Hardball Talk, talking about this very thing ~ the Cardinal fans I mean.  Take a look at what he says about it here and you’ll see what I mean.

Obstruction Call Tonight

Obstruction Call Tonight

And if you weren’t fortunate enough to watch the entire game (it was a  good one!) take a look at  Hardball Talk’s piece on the obstruction call that ended the game.   You’ll be hearing lots more about this one. Wow!  Whatta great  game.  Doesn’t get much better than this!   Can’t wait for game time tomorrow!

Oh It’s Good To Be Back Home Again ……

Okay, I’ll say it.  I’m not ashamed to admit that one of my very favorite baseball moments of all time was the Opening Day Ceremonies on April 5, 2011, following that glorious 2010 World Series Championship win .  The game was between the San Francisco Giants and the St Louis Cardinals. So today was just the icing on the cake for me.  The same teams were playing, and the championship flag was again being hoisted above the park to remain for the entire 2013 season so that all who crossed  our threshold could see what a magical place they had entered. 

But today, instead of being at the game, I was watching from my comfortable chair, all decked out in orange and black, with a box of Kleenex and a paper bag (to dispose of the used tissues) nearby.  And I did pretty good until they introduced the Cards Manager, Mike Matheny, and the crowd broke into near hysteria in support of this fellow, another of my very favorites.  And I lost it, never to fully recover for the rest of the ceremony. 

music notesI’m not sure why I was so emotional today, but it probably had something to do with the affection the Giants fans feel for their team, and the entire organization for that matter, but also for anyone who has anything to do with the Giants!  The crowd cheered just as loud for each of the St Louis Cardinal players who were former Giants as they did for the current Giants themselves.   It’s been a long dry spell, this post, post-season, and finally today, after five months we have our kids back home ready to dance around the mound, and the plate and the field.  “It’s the sweetest thing I know of, just spending time with you” ……..as if I was singing the song to each of them individually as they walked out onto the field.   Continue reading

Here I Go Again ……..”Oh, Those Classy Cardinals!”

“Zito handing over the ball”

This is filed under the “Just when you think you’ve seen it all” Category.  Barry Zito’s pitching was superb tonight  in Game 5 of the NLCS between the San Francisco Giants and the St. Louis Cardinals.   He pitched a shut-out into the 8th Inning with 115 total pitches and the Giants won the game 5-0.  I was considering not even watching the game because I figured if the Cardinals won I’d watch the next game which would be Game 1 of the World Series and if the Giants won, I’d be able to watch them play again Sunday, in San Francisco, in front of their home crowd.  That way I could avoid watching the stressful nail-biter game I was sure it would be.   But that’s not what happened.  I mean it wasn’t a nail-biter.  

Something else happened at Busch Stadium tonight that probably happens a lot  in St. Louis but honestly I don’t think I’ve ever seen it before.  It was one of those emotional moments I live for in sports, an honor to witness, via the telly of course, and I couldn’t wait to write about it.

“St. Louis Cardinal Fans”

During the 8th Inning, Bochy decided to replace Zito for whatever reason Boche decides to do these things, and Barry Zito walked off the mound after a really spectacular pitching performance, a  shut-out.  He also contributed an RBI single to his efforts. And as he walked off the mound across the field toward the dugout, those crazy Cardinal fans did something really spectacular.  During this championship series game they stood up and gave Zito, the opposing pitcher who just zapped the spirit out of their home team, a standing ovation.  They knew tonight Zito was  the guy who put a door stop in their chance at least momentarily of winning the 2012 National League Pennant.  A win tonight for the St Louis Cardinals would have propelled them right into the World Series.   But that didn’t stop them from showing appreciation for a job well done.  These fans are from Missouri, the “Show Me State” and he showed them a job well done, and they said thank you.  

Just when you think you’ve seen it all.  I’ve always had a genuine fondness for the Cardinal fans.  I wrote about it last year on opening day “Those Classy Cardinals” and this is just another little reminder that the spirit of St Louis is alive and well and so is the spirit of baseball.   

Related articles

2010 World Champions vs 2011 World Champions!

SF Giants vs. St Louis Cardinals
“Opening Day April, 2011″

On April 9, 2011, I wrote a blog titled “Those Classy Cardinals”.  It was opening day, the first league game after the Giants won the World Series, and they were hosting the St. Louis Cardinals.  It was a great game and the blog got a record number of views and comments.  It was one of my favorites.    Here’s a link to that post “Those Classy Cardinals”.

And then again, on November 14, 2011, I published a blog about the young, new Cardinals Manager, Mike Matheny, who had left baseball some five years earlier as a promising catcher with the SF Giants after sustaining a series of concussions.  He’d just been named as General Manager of the St Louis Cardinals and he was my new hero.  Here’s a link to that post “Mike Matheny ~ Leading by Example.”

“2011 Opening Day in San Francisco”

So there’s just a little bit of irony here as I’m settling in to watch the first game of the race for the 2012 National League Pennant between the SF Giants and the St Louis Cardinals.  Who knew?  I’ve been anxiously awaiting this series which I projected without a doubt would be  between Cincinnati and Washington. But the  Giants and Cards have this way of sneaking in and surprising everyone and now they’re the contenders. 

“Calm & Cool as a Cucumber”

But, seriously folks, there’s no dilemma here.    My home team is the San Francisco Giants (I’m a huge fan), and I really love those Cardinals.  And like many true blue baseball fans,  I just love to see a really great game no matter who wins and I think I’ve recovered enough after the 2010 World Series to be able to handle this ~ calm and cool as a cucumber.

But I’m not sure.  I’ll let you know when it’s over. 

2012 MLB Team and Player Salaries

2012 All Star Game Photo

Here’s the 2012 update to our 2011 listing published August 27, 2011.  This comes to us compliments of USA Today.  If you’ll click the individual teams, you can access the individual players salaries.  It will be interesting to note the annual salaries of the teams that make the playoffs;  in other words, did they get what they paid for?  For example; the Washington Nationals have the best record in the Majors this year, but have the 11th Lowest Salary out of 30 Teams.   Salary Chart Linked Here

2012 MLB Salaries  
 

TEAM

TOTAL PAYROLL
New York Yankees $ 197,962,289
Philadelphia Phillies $ 174,538,938
Boston Red Sox $ 173,186,617
Los Angeles Angels $ 154,485,166
Detroit Tigers $ 132,300,000
Texas Rangers $ 120,510,974
Miami Marlins $ 118,078,000
San Francisco Giants $ 117,620,683
St. Louis Cardinals $ 110,300,862
Milwaukee Brewers $ 97,653,944
Chicago White Sox $ 96,919,500
Los Angeles Dodgers $ 95,143,575
Minnesota Twins $ 94,085,000
New York Mets $ 93,353,983
Chicago Cubs $ 88,197,033
Atlanta Braves $ 83,309,942
Cincinnati Reds $ 82,203,616
Seattle Mariners $ 81,978,100
Baltimore Orioles $ 81,428,999
Washington Nationals $ 81,336,143
Cleveland Indians $ 78,430,300
Colorado Rockies $ 78,069,571
Toronto Blue Jays $ 75,489,200
Arizona Diamondbacks $ 74,284,833
Tampa Bay Rays $ 64,173,500
Pittsburgh Pirates $ 63,431,999
Kansas City Royals $ 60,916,225
Houston Astros $ 60,651,000
Oakland Athletics $ 55,372,500
San Diego Padres $ 55,244,700

               

Baseball’s Top Ten News Items in 2011

2011 World Champions St Louis Cardinals

The media’s full of articles and videos of the most newsworthy items about baseball this past year.   You might think this would be those articles you and I found the most interesting and representative of baseball throughout the country, but not necessarily so.

I compiled a list from a survey today of the “top 10″ from USA Today, Bleacher Report, Sports Illustrated, and ESPN.

Here’s the results and below that I’ve listed my own personal “Top Ten”.  How does your list compare?

TOP TEN FROM SURVEY

  1. St. Louis Cardinals, World Series Champions
  2. Justin Verlander,  AL Cy Young and MVP Winner
  3. Game 162 collapse of the Red Sox and Braves.
  4. Game 6 World Series between the Cardinals and Rangers
  5. Derek Jeter’s 3000th hit
  6. Ryan Braun’s Drug Test
  7. Jim Thome’s 600th Home Run
  8. Shannon Stone Fatal Fall at Rangers Stadium
  9. Mariano Rivera all time saves leader
  10. Bryan Stow beating at Dodger Stadium Continue reading

Mike Matheny ~ Leading by Example

Example isn’t another way to teach, it is the  only way to teach. ~ Albert Einstein.”

Last week the sports world was shaken by an announcement about illegal, immoral, unethical, sickening and a zillion other adjectives you could use to describe activities  that have been allowed to exist while the powers-that-be looked the other way.  And then yesterday another college has come forth with a similar situation.  We’ll just have to wait and see how many more are involved.

Mike Matheny as the Giants Catcher

So last night as I was getting ready to shut down for the evening I caught a headline that had crept into my blogosphere:  “Mike Matheny to Become New Cardinals Manager.”  Did I read this right?  How can this be?  I was thinking about the popular catcher the Giants signed to a three-year contract back in 2004.  In his first season with the Giants, Matheny won not only a Gold Glove Award but also the coveted Willie Mac Award given for spirit and leadership.   But the next year was not so kind to Mike as a series of foul balls pummeled his catcher’s mask resulting in a serious concussion that eventually ended his playing career.   I’d heard he went back to St. Louis where he’d played previously and was hired as a consultant or adviser or something. Continue reading

Game 7. Those Wild ‘WILD CARD” Cards!

Best Fans and Best Team in Baseball

It’s true!  What better gift to the fans of the St. Louis Cardinals than the title “World Champions”!    This picture is my favorite of all the thousands because if shows the team and the fans in unison like they’re in it together and they did it together, which of course they did.   Last year the St. Louis Cardinal fans were selected number one best fans in baseball based on knowledge of the game, loyalty and sportsmanship.  San Francisco Giants fans were voted second. Continue reading

Game 6. Oh What A Night! Cardinals Force Game 7!

Tonight the St. Louis Cardinals took it to the Texas Rangers in good old-fashioned Missouri “show me” style as the Cardinals won in 11 innings by a score of 10-9.  And “show me” they did.

Here’s a sampling from last night’s game.  Click here to see the entire story by Jeff Sullivan, Editor,  SB Nation: 

David Freese on Defense Game 6

“Oct 28, 2011 – You have to understand my situation, here. I started writing this recap when the Cardinals were trailing the Rangers 7-4 in the seventh inning, and it looked like the Rangers were going to win their Continue reading

Game 5. Rangers Texas 2-Stepping all the way to Missouri!

The Texas Rangers are flying high all the way back to Missouri, and without an airplane, so I’m told.   They beat the Cardinals 4-2  and are one game away from winning it all!

Here are some excerpts from a  pretty good ditty on the game  in case you haven’t seen one of the hundreds out there.  This one’s from the Huffington Post ;

“ARLINGTON,Texas— Mike Napoli was dialed in, no matter who he was going to face.

A charmed season for Napoli and the Texas Rangers got even better Monday night, thanks to a most unlikely twist – a bullpen telephone mix-up.

After a dropped ball and a dropped call, of sorts, loaded the bases in the eighth inning, Napoli delivered a tie breaking two-run double that beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4-2 and gave Texas a 3-2 edge in the World Series. Continue reading

Game 2. Texas Rangers Pluck Some Feathers Tonight!

Texas Rangers celebrate Game 2 win over Cardinals

The Texas Rangers are leaving town with the Cardinals singing the blues …. St. Louis Blues that is after staging  a ninth inning rally that  won the game for them.  Final score:  Rangers 3 – Cardinals 2.   Well for sure I can’t use the 2010 Game 2 as a blog opener this year.  Last year the Giants shut out the Rangers 9-0 in Game 2.   Entirely different game this year.   For one thing I just couldn’t get enough of the Elvis & Ian dynamic. Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler may be the best all-around double-play combo in the game.   At least tonight they were.   Pretty impressive stuff coming from the Texas Rangers.  I have to admit we have ourselves a real World Series folks.

Elvin Andrus & Ian Kinsler Double Play Magic!

Highlight of this game?  In the 5th inning all eyes were on the Texas Rangers as Elvis Andrus  flipped the ball off the tip of his fingers to Ian Kinsler, forcing out Jaime Garcia on his way to 2nd, on a hit by the Card’s Rafael Furcal.  This is one of those plays that needs to be seen on a video and was the highlight of the game for me.   There were several antics like this during the game, but the Rangers waited until the ninth inning to score adding to the anticipation this world series is going to seven!   I love this stuff!

Since we’re leaving St. Louis and heading to Arlington, Texas for Saturday’s game, I wanted to share this picture with you.  For some reason I never really associated the Budweiser Clydesdales  with St. Louis.  But here they are in grand fashion posing for ooh’s and aah’s.

The Budweiser Clydesdales enjoying the game!

Game 1. Texas Can’t Hold ‘Em!

“Who would have thought it?  Cardinals 3, Rangers 2.   I had almost as much fun watching the sports pundits after the game as I did watching the game itself.  Well, almost.”

What better quote than using the exact opener I used on last year’s Game 1 blog replacing, of course, the Giants with Cardinals.    I watched the media before the game throughout the day and the odds were 80% in favor of Texas “going all the way”.  And, of course they may, but at least the odds are right now, today, just a little in favor of the St. Louis Cardinals.  Winners of Game one go on to win it all  in 60% of the World Series played to date.

One of the memorable quotes from the game, “It’s a five letter word S- T- R- I- K- E ” as only Tim McCarver could utter at the end of the 6th inning.

For those who like to know about the key moments, here are two, courtesy of NPR’s Tom Goldman’s report for Morning Edition:

Chris Carpenter on a "Defensive" slide into 1st Base.

“— The coolest play came in the first inning. Cards pitcher Chris Carpenter covered the bag at first base, and had to dive to the ground to get the ball tossed his way by first baseman Albert Pujols. “Carpenter dove for the ball and as his long frame hit the ground he tagged the base with his glove hand, at the same time pulling his pitching hand away to protect it from the batter’s oncoming cleats,” Tom says. “How cool to see a pitcher getting dirty.”

The play, Tom added, “served notice that the game, perhaps the Series, is going to be a diving for every out, clawing for every run affair.”

Allen Craig's "off the bench" hit to score the winning run.

— The biggest play came in the sixth inning when Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa sent pinch hitter Allen Craig to the plate in place of Carpenter. Craig’s hit to right field was dropped by Ranger outfielder Nelson Cruz. That drove in the winning run. LaRussa’s savvy use of his bench and bullpen came through again.”

Game 2 – Tonight at Busch Stadium, St. Louis at 5:05 pm televised on Fox.