I feel like pretty much every Monday I could sit here and write a post about a loss over the weekend that we’re going to remember as the point of the 2012 season where the Cardinals finally broke, then collapsed.
A 19 inning debacle that featured an unprecedented 0-15 from Matt Holliday and David Freese seems like a loss that is more likely to endure than some of the others we’ve already forgotten.
Then again, there still are 40+ games remaining and I’m not putting anything past this team.
But we’re not here to talk about gut shot losses, though.
We’re here to talk about the PUSIFICATION of the Cardinals.
10 months ago, we cautioned that the retirement of Tony LaRussa, while heartening to some, was going to be a bigger detriment to the Cardinals as an organization than the loss of Albert Pujols. You simply don’t fake your way into the top 3 managerial wins of a game in its third century of play. TLR was the ultimate grinder and yesterday’s loss would have ate him up for weeks.
What say you, though, Mike Matheny?
“The guys played hard,” Matheny said. “They did. They fought. I’m proud of how they went about it. I’d really like to have walked out of there with a win, but I liked the way they played the game.”
You can read more of Mike’s quotes over at Bernie’s column for STLToday.com, but the above one I listed, I assure you, actually did happen.
What exactly did you like about it, Mike? That it wasn’t a one run game, as was threatened, pushing that astonishing 12-21 mark deeper into the abyss? That the Cardinals had a chance to tie Pittsburgh for the Wild Card, but lost a winnable series at home? That everyone got to enjoy an extra three hours of being outside on a beautiful Sunday?
Mike was proud of that loss. Orange slices and juice boxes for everyone!!!
Let me ask you how… did the phrase “proud” ever come out of LaRussa’s mouth after wasting TWO quality starts in the same game? Or do you think he was stewing post-loss? Whatever your feelings on LaRussa, at least you knew he was pissed after coughing up a series. Looks like Matheny is taking a page from the Steve Spagnuolo playbook and choosing to stay positive.
These are professionals. They get paid (well) to play baseball. This is their J-O-B. And when you or I go into work and suck hard, do our bosses praise us? Nope. They don’t. They tell us what needs to be said and if we don’t improve, then we get shipped out.
The Cardinals play in a weak league with multiple All-Stars. They should be in the playoffs. And if they aren’t, then that’s a failure.
It’s time to quit sugarcoating the situation, Mike. It’s time to hold people accountable. End the coddling.