No, whoever wins the tight Central race will still have the adrenaline pumping and be rolling on all cylinders, while the Braves will have clinched it so long ago that they won't be as sharp. Add into it Bobby Cox's legendarily poor postseason management and it adds up to a first round sweep and further embarrasment for the Braves. The Braves will never win another world series until they fire Cox; he's a terrible manager.
I'm a diehard Cardinals' fan from St. Louis. And I'll tell everybody flat out that they are not a World Series team. Even if they get lucky and win the Central, no way can they matchup against the NL best in the playoffs. The starting staff and bullpen are very weak. I also think the Cardinals lack a legitimate leadoff hitter. Neither Vina or Bo Hart should be hitting in the #1 hole.
I fully agree that they are nowhere near the best team in the league overall, and to be the best team in the league, they'd need to add at least another top shelf starter and some quality middle relievers. I think the offense is just fine though, and rivals pretty much any team in the majors.
However, all a team really needs to do is somehow get into the playoffs, because from there it's all a crapshoot. Whatever pitcher or hitter gets hot at any given team can easily carry an inferior team to an upset over a much better team.
JDH, I'm not a "Tony Basher," but what do you think about LaRussa pulling Dan Haren in Chicago after 63 pitches -- when the bullpen was exhausted from too much use? I keep hearing how upset everybody was that LaRussa let Woody Williams close. But my problem was that Tony went to the bullpen so quick when no legitimate horses were in the pen ready for use. I'll never forgive Tony for the Pedro Bourbon and Jeff Fassero disasters, either. If we lose the division by a gamo or two, I really think people will be able to point to those 3 games. Tony has definitely made some questionable moves.
P.S. I don't think anybody can question Wade Miller at this point. Sure, he was inconsistent in the first half. But the guy has been lights out since then.
Yeah, I definitely am not a fan of Tony La Russa. I think he is a highly overrated manager that takes matchups to the extreme. His management of his pitching staff is almost as inept as Dusty Baker's and needs to draw scrutiny. Early in the season, Morris was on a roll and La Russa kept on running him out there for high pitch counts, and usually complete games and shutouts every start. I really think the overuse early in the season was a major contributer to him breaking down and being useless for most of the year.
Then, he had Woody Williams pitching great, but he's always been a guy that has always been injury prone, and wears down easily. Instead of protecting him, he has been riding him into the ground all year (he leads the league in pitches per start), and the results have shown second half. If he could have just pulled him after around 100 pitches most of the year, I really think he would have been able to maintain close to the level of performance early in the season. Bringing Woody into the game in relief 2 days after throwing 120+ pitches, and then sending him out there 3 days later to throw 120 pitches again today is just ridiculous abuse. I understand that the bullpen could not be trusted earlier in the year, but I think that the Cards would have been 5 games up by now if he had better maintained the workloads of Morris and Williams all year. Also, how much would it really have costed to bring in some reliable middle relievers earlier in the year? The Cards should have been all over Benitez, Urbina, Williamson, Williams, Kim, Sauerbeck, etc. at the beginning of the year.
I really would like to see La Russa fired if they don't make the playoffs. I think Bowa and Cox are the only two more inept managers than him that still have a job.
I noticed that Woody Williams seemed really tire out after 100 pitches. Even early in the season that seemed to be a problem. I'm not a manager, and I don't have the stats, but I would think that management would have those numbers and know not to let him break the 100 pitch mark. Now he's very tired and I'm going to most likely let him go. He served me well, but he's not just slowed down, he's almost at a stop.
Yes doctor, I am sick. Sick of those who are spineless. Sick of those who feel self-entitled. Sick of those who are hypocrites. Yes doctor, an army is forming. Yes doctor, there will be a war. Yes doctor, there will be blood.....
jdh wrote:Yeah, I definitely am not a fan of Tony La Russa. I think he is a highly overrated manager that takes matchups to the extreme.
what are you talking about, Tony is the best Micro, Micro, Micro, even more damn Micro manager in baseball. I'd swear he has dice in his pocket. That could be the only logic for some of his decisions. You can't blame his "8" ball, because it gave up trying to reason with him years ago.