May 23, 2012; St. Louis, MO. USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Chris Carpenter (left) talks with starting pitcher Kyle Lohse (26) during the eighth inning against the San Diego Padres at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-US PRESSWIRE

Game Day Six Pack: “Everyone Calm the F*ck Down.”


2012 has been full of its own painful memories, remembering the painful memories from 2011 are basically ground into the pavement with the rest of our guts.

So as Aaron Hooks of Cards Diaspora welcomes us to St. Louis, keep in mind we have plenty to worry about here and now without thinking about Ryan Howard crumpling to the ground out of the batter’s boOH FUCK HERE I GO AGAIN.

ESPN’s David Schoenfield recently wrote of the Cardinals, “…that hot start is a thing of the past. The injuries are mounting and that run differential has gone to waste.” Don’t you just want to smack him? Or does he have a point? And should he shut up anyway?

Did David Schoenfield expect the Cardinals to win 140 games? Hit 700 team home runs? Bat .310? Because if he was expecting that, then he’s right… the injuries are really taking a toll on the best season of all time in any sport.

I really hope ESPN isn’t paying (much) for insight like ‘lose 3 first basemen in 6 days after losing Pujols in the off-season and it could hurt the team’. Because that’s the kind of shit you say in a bar and people roll their eyes and make a mental note to never bring up baseball again.

The Cardinals are banged up. They’re still in first place. Everyone calm the fuck down.

The recently re-imagined plans for the $100 million Ballpark Village around Busch Stadium are reportedly “scaled back” from past blueprints.  What previously planned spectacles will we miss out on?  Can people live in this village?  Will you?

It’s really hard to describe Ballpark Village briefly. But here goes nothing… it’s a fucking clusterfuckingfuck.

It was supposed to be bars and condos and shopping and entertainment and awesome all rolled up into about 6 city blocks. You know what they got done in the past 7 years since the original plan was revealed?

A softball field.

No, seriously. Take a look. That’s what they’ve done in 7 years. So I’ve got a plan too. I’m going to take over at first base for the Cardinals and hit 30 HRs and start dating Mila Kunis, you know, for the good of the city. I’ll hire a fancy designer to draw a picture of it and announce it to the media too.

Five Cardinals have gone down in the past week.  Obliques are straining.  Platelets are being injected.  Retirement is being considered.  It’s time to ask.  Do police suspect foul play?  Are the Cardinals eliminating their own players?  What are they trying to hide and who will they silence to hide it?!

The Cardinals are not healthy. Broken wings puns are flying around the newsrooms of STL with alarming frequency. It’s not pretty.

But guess what Philadelphia fans… the Cardinals play in the Comedy Central. Those late season series against the Astros and Pirates are just as good as the clear or the cream in rehabbing some bumps and bruises. So hopefully we’ll see you in the post-season again this year. I’m sure you remember how much fun it was last time we met in October?

AMIRITE?  [EDITOR'S NOTE:  No, you are not right, and I think you know you are not right] [EDITOR'S SECOND NOTE:  Thank you for assuming we'll make the post season.]

How significant to Adam Wainwright’s confidence and development was his recent CG shutout, after not even going eight innings this season and not pitching at all last year?  How concerned should the rest of the National League be?

Wainwright broke down on the post-game player of the game interview on the local Fox Sports affiliate.

He looked like a doctor just came in and told him that whole cancer thing he told him about last week? Turns out he’s good to go. He’s free and clear. Dude was emo.

That wouldn’t play well in Philly, but in the warm bosom of St. Louis Baseball, the faint chorus of people wondering if Wainwright came back too early or needed to fake an injury to go on the DL and get his head right are silenced. He might not pitch like that every outing from here on out, but he now KNOWS for sure that he CAN pitch like that every outing from here on out.

Coming back from a major injury is a two step process. You’ve got to get back physically. He’s done that. Now he’s over the mental hump. I expect him to turn out a couple more dominant performances before the year is over.

As a team that is also trying to fill gaping holes with Triple-A “prospects,” the Phillies have been far less successful.  What are you doing that we aren’t?  Or do our players just suck?  Go ahead and say they don’t, if you want to.

It didn’t used to be like this, trust me. Topps had this guy as our franchises “Future Star.”

Skinny fetish porn, maybe. Baseball, no.

Until the Cardinals hired Jeff Lunhow (now GM for Houston) to run the minor league system and until they replaced legendary GM Walk Jocketty (now with the Reds) with John Mozeliak who actually was committed to Jeff Lunhow’s farm system plan AND could convince Tony LaRussa to at least sample some of the young guys… well, we had a bunch of Tripp Cromers.

So in summation, here’s the least sexy blog analysis ever: it’s a systemic issue. Either an organization buys in from the top down and crams it down people’s throat (Tampa) or you buy the best players when they actually pan out at premium prices (Boston). But when you stick to the middle (Philly), it’s going to be tough to consistently produce value players on cheap contracts.

Carlos Ruiz is in the middle of a monster season.  Whenever the “best NL catcher right now” argument has been brought up for a few years now, guys like Brian McCann and your Yadier Molina rightfully stand in Chooch’s way.  However, right now, who is the best catcher in the NL?  There is no wrong answer.  But the right answer is Chooch.  Say anyone you want though.  Chooch.  Is the answer.

The best catcher in baseball is Yadier Molina.

I’ll spare you all the caught stealing stats. The clutch batting stats. Even the big spiel about how he handles a pitching staff and makes stars.

And I’ll just submit to you this.  Maybe that World Series trophy he’s gunning you out with all weekend might make you change your mind.

We’ll always have ’11 together, right Philly?

RIGHT?  [EDITOR'S NOTE:  Once again, no, and I feel like you're doing this on purpose.]

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