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In thinking about complete games I usually recall the post game mayhem in the Cardinal clubhouse and Harry Caray talking to the players after they clinched the 1967 pennant. Bob Gibson had the broken leg in July, and pitched that mid-September pennant clincher in his second start since coming back from the injury. He pitched a complete game.
Harry got his attention and said “I knew you would pitch this kind of a ball game.” Gibby responded “Well Harry, I really wanted to go 9 innings.”
It is just a different game today. Pitchers are asked to throw about as hard as they can on every pitch. If the coaches see that gun register a lower than expected number on the fast ball, there is a concern and someone gets up in the bullpen. There is no pacing yourself to stay strong into the late innings. There are about five other guys in the bullpen for the late innings.
Good comments by all, and a great discussion. As Cardinal fans, one good thing we have going for us is the topic is the frustration of not doing better in post season.
Out here in this old cow town I reside, fans would love to have this discussion! They have similar thoughts about “cheap” ownership, but do not have the related on-field success track record.
You make some good and accurate points on Rolen’s Philadelphia situation, 1TD. My step-daughter was living in Lancaster, PA in the early 2000s, and in April 2002 my wife and I road tripped back there for a visit.
At a stop for gas somewhere in Pennsylvania, I picked up a Baseball Weekly, I think that was the publication, and the cover story was whether or not Rolen would be a Phillie much longer, and the coolness between him and Larry Bowa.
My step-daughter got us tickets to a game against the Padres, who had Ray Langford in their lineup. We were in the lower level, third base side, so we saw Scott up close. The ovations for him that night were mixed, as Phillie fans can be pretty tough, although the crowd was fairly light as it was an April game against the Padres, and the weather was cool and damp.
Scott has some abrasion with the two clubs he is most associated with. Maybe he will surprise everyone and go in as a Cincinnati Red!! 🙂
I my opinion, the thought of “Building a team that can win the World Series” is a flawed argument in today’s MLB environment. The Cardinals philosophy of building a contender that can compete in the post season is a sound platform. That is what every organization strives for.
In looking over the last 10 seasons, only two of them featured each league’s best team in the World Series, 2020 and 2013. Every other year at least one, and sometimes both league’s representatives were not the club with the best winning percentage.
That does not mean our club could make some moves to improve areas of need. But I have no qualms with a philosophy of contending, and then seeing if we are one of the clubs that gets hot in post season.
Cannot comment on the whole “conservative midwest” and how that translates to a ball club. I think that is probably unrelated. But to reiterate, in today’s climate every team is built, or are attempting to be on a track towards being in contention to win their division. There is no real way to say a team is “building a World Series winner”, because once you get to post season and short series, there is much more randomness involved. The better team is often not the best post season team.
I am okay which ever hat Rolen has on his plaque, Phillies or Cardinals. Obviously I would prefer our club, but can understand him being a Phillie as well. He played a season longer in Philadelphia, and accumulated more WAR with them. Also. guys often tend to associate themselves more with the organization that drafted them and where they came through the minors with, if they also played with the major league club for a representative time frame.
Scott’s World Series appearances and a championship with St. Louis put the scales about even between the two clubs. His sort of nasty exit from the Cardinals could make it so he goes with the Phillies though.
No matter – a well deserved honor.
The Cardinals will be good in 2023, provided they do not lose extended time to key players. What would really push them over the top is if someone steps up to be the clear ace of the pitching staff.
One key personnel decision they may have fumbled on was bringing up Marmol to the manager position. Looking back, they made a mistake not hiring Francona when they had the chance. He would have brought in the stability and leadership we had with LaRussa.
At any rate, Ollie is the guy and should get better as his experience accumulates.
Chip Caray is a great choice. Thought he was anchored in Atlanta, but this is a cool “full circle” hire.
Back when Chip was doing Cubs games I never thought much of him. But I heard him on Braves broadcasts years later, and he had improved a lot. He is a quality broadcaster. He’s got to feel great coming back to where his grandpa is a legend, and his dad got his start.
Chip is different than the earlier Caray’s, who used a lot of enthusiasm (Harry) and humor (Skip) in their style. Chip is more of a straight man.
I like the hire!
Very happy for Scotty! Yep 1TD, I would love to see Kenny Boyer in some day! Well deserved for Scott though. Helton probably waits a year and then gets in.
I agree with Cranny in that this is most powerful group of players we have had in recent memory, in terms of proven ability and potential.
Now historically Cardinal teams have been more defense, speed and pitching oriented. Some late ‘90s and early 2000s teams had good power, but not the depth of potential that is in the organization right now.
I like what was said about management taking more time with the young guys and not being so willing to let guys go. It seems they discount athleticism. But you have a guy who can run and has shown power, man, you really need to give him a lot of reps and not look at say just strikeouts and think he won’t make it in the bigs.
I am not sure on this, but it seems like in my 60 years or so of following the Cardinals, on a net basis they have given up more wins than they have acquired. Some notable exceptions, Brock, Wainwright. But a lot of talent has been given up that has done well elsewhere.
If Walker gets to the MV3 status, and is the youngest of the three, which he would likely be, I will call them “Junior Walker and the All Stars.” What does it take? 😀
Pham with a shot to play for a winner.
Didn’t Ted Savage work for the organization in some capacity for quite awhile after he retired as a player?
He always seemed like a guy who would be pretty good, but never could quite get there. Always reminded me some of Alex Johnson. But Johnson did have some good seasons and won the AL batting title in 1970.
I am not sure how the pitch clock correlates to the NBA 24 second clock, as was brought up earlier. Nor how it “ruined the game.” The 24 second clock has been around for what, 65 years or more? If it ruined the game, the NBA would have gone under years ago.
I don’t think bigger bases will lead to more steal attempts. Stealing is just not in vogue anymore in the analytics era. Plus, doesn’t a bigger base mean a slightly shorter throw from the catcher? I don’t see much advantage there.
The shift ban is probably a good thing. It has been around forever, but was never widely used until the last 10 years or so. What would be better than a total ban, would be to add some strategy and limit the shift, but not ban it. Say give each team 2 or 3 shift opportunities.
Do you burn a shift in the fifth inning, when you are facing a bases loaded, two out situation and Matt Carpenter at bat in a 2-2 game? Or do you hang on to it and take your chances, saving it for later in the game when outs are becoming more precious, and you may want it for consecutive hitters?
I recall Reggie saying something back in the ‘70s when he signed with the Yankees for a few mil over three or four years – not sure of the exact quote but it was something like, “Yeah, I am probably being overpaid, but that’s the world we live in.”
Yeah, Wagner was certainly good. 12Ks per 9 innings too. It’s just that when you look at a guy like Koufax – 1.1 WHIP but over 2300 innings, then those one inning guys pale in comparison.
Not that they don’t belong, but when you have a guy like that you would love to use him more.
Great story on those informal workouts after the ‘81 strike 1TD! Porter was good for our club in the ‘82 post season, and Whitey always liked his defense. But I hated seeing Simmons traded. He was my favorite Cardinal in the ‘70s. But those ‘70s teams were bad – Bing Devine filled a lot of other team’s all star representatives with guys he traded.
Think how good we would have been with a rotation of Carlton, Torrez and Reuss through the ‘70s. Then add John Denny later in the decade. I always feel that there would have been two “Big Red Machines”, with an annual post season battle between our pitching and the Reds hitting.January 9, 2023 at 5:49 pm in reply to: Will Walker have more of an early impact than Carlson has been? #210692
I would take the over on that. But who knows. We will see over the next three years or so.
I saw something where Jim Bowden said the Cardinals are working on something with a “name” pitcher, but are keeping it hush hush. For whatever that is worth – probably not much.
Wagner had a lot of saves, but closers don’t fare too well as far as overall value numbers go. They just don’t pitch enough innings to really make a difference. But the innings they pitch are often high leverage, so that needs to be taken in to consideration.
Other than Mariano Rivera, I can justify a closer not getting the call. Then again when they are enshrined, I am okay with it.
Great memories. Yeah, color television was almost non-existent in the mid-’60s in my neighborhood. We had what I think was a 19 inch black and white set; a Magnavox maybe? I am not sure. It was probably ’67 before my dad sprung for a real nice Curtis-Mathes color set, in the nice wood console cabinet. Back then televisions were often a nice piece of furniture. I was 11 in ’64, and watched some of the Series games with my dad, at least the weekend games.
There was an older lady down the street that got a color set around 1962 or ’63. She let me and the kid across the street come down and watch an All-Star game on it, and it was quite the novelty.
My parents never smoked, which was also unusual back then as it seems most of my friends parents smoked. I would be across the street at my buddies’ house, and come home and my clothes had that cigarette smoke smell to them. Needless to say his parents passed away in their 50s and 60s, whereas my parents were into their 80s before leaving this life. And both were relatively healthy and doing well up until they said goodbye.
Obviously I have been a lobbyist for Boyer’s inclusion in the Hall, especially after Santo got in.
That salami in game four turned the ‘64 Series around. It was looking like the Yankees were going to go up 3 games to 1, then boom! (as the late John Madden would say). Boyer gets about as clutch of a hit as you can get.
Those of us who saw Reitz play usually rave about his defensive skills, but he does not have very good dWAR numbers – less than 2 defensive win for his entire career. Brooks Robinson, probably the gold standard for defense at third, had almost 40 defensive wins.
Schmidt was better, but still falls short of the numbers in the list I previously posted. Terry Pendleton comes out about equal to Schmidt, and thus well ahead of Reitz; each in the .7s using my stat.
I think what probably hurt Reitz was the thing you do not see so much with defense, and that was lack of range. He made some outstanding plays, but I think a lot of balls got through when hit to his left, and probably down the line as well. I think that is where Arenado exceeds Rolen, as his range to his left is terrific.
Out of curiosity I checked some old time guys, like early 20th century and Jimmy Collins, a guy you never hear about as his career went back to the 19th century and into the 20th, was really good. Still not the Arenado/Robinson “good”, but better than most.
Oh, and there is sometimes debate about Ken Boyer being a Hall of Famer and how he compares to Ron Santo. Boyer’s dWAR was better than Santo. Putting my stat to their career numbers Boyer comes in at .526, and Santo .387. Both still well below those guys that get over 1.00.
The routine and great plays should be baked into the numbers, but there is always room for personal judgement. From what I have seen, Arenado is the best third baseman I have ever witnessed. But I saw him a lot out here when he was a Rockie as well.
The two things about Scott that bothered me were that he was a little fragile. For being a big, strong guy he was a bit injury prone. And second, I did not like they way things were when he was dealt away – that spat with LaRussa and all. I think Tony was more to blame for that than Rolen, but neither one did themselves any favors in the way they carried on their little feud.
Having said that. Scott was my favorite Cardinal during his time here, and is a sure fire Hall of Famer in my opinion. I was disappointed in the way things were at the end though.
One other comment about those stats – Scott’s numbers are for a full career, whereas Nolan is still playing. As he ages I expect Arenado’s metrics will come down some, as he loses a bit of range.
I looked up Baseball Reference’s dWAR statistic and put a calculation together ranking a few third baseman. Based on that Arenado is right there with Brooks Robinson in defensive value. Clete Boyer was indeed fabulous as well.
For the comparison, I took the dWAR number and divided it by games played. The numbers are below, with the decimal point moved over a couple of places to make it more understandable:
B Robinson 1.350
Arenado is a bit more nimble than Rolen around the hot corner. In watching him quite lot with the Rockies and now as a Redbird, he is a bit better defensively than Rolen. But you cannot go wrong with either one.
Rolen is built a bit like my avatar player, Ken Boyer. Both big husky dudes. Back in the day they said as good as Ken was defensively, his brother was even better. Some said Clete was better than Brooks Robinson even.
Helton was also really good, both offensively and defensively. There was a time where he and Pujols were about even. Then Todd had the back issues and eventually Albert had the foot problems and both were compromised.
I am good with both Rolen and Helton getting in, if that comes to pass.
Indeed 1TD. What is really sobering is the fact that I am older than some of the guys we lost that are in this grouping.
My hope is to make it about as long as Curt Simmons was with us. But as you said, the important thing is to keep swinging, enjoy the moment, and while we are here be a positive influence in our family and circle of friends.