Dexter Fowler (Jeff Curry/USA TODAY Sports Images)

A recap of St. Louis Cardinals-related news from the period of June 12-18, 2017.

The St. Louis Cardinals went 2-5 last week, falling to 5.5 back in the division and 12 out of a Wild Card. Dexter Fowler plated 12 runs in the last seven games but the pitching is sliding. Our history feature looks at the St. Louis Browns becoming the Baltimore Orioles.

Game Recaps

Monday, June 12 - Off day.

Tuesday, June 13 - Cardinals 6, Brewers 0 (Game 1 DH)

In the day game of a twin bill, the Cardinals shut out the Brewers.  Lance Lynn pitched five scoreless innings, allowing three hits while fanning eight and walking four and earned his fifth win of the season.  John Brebbia pitched a scoreless sixth.  Tyler Lyons tossed three scoreless innings to earn his first save of the season.

Jose Martinez shined offensively, with two home runs, solo shots in the fifth and eighth innings.  Martinez was 2-for-3, drove in three and scored twice.  Dexter Fowler was 2-for-4 with an RBI.  Matt Carpenter and Kolten Wong also plated runs.  Chad Huffman hit a pinch hit triple.

 

Tuesday, June 13 - Cardinals 5, Brewers 8 (Game 2 DH)

In the doubleheader nightcap, the Cardinals didn’t fare as well.  Memphis starter Marco Gonzales was called up to pitch Game 2, and he struggled, lasting only 3 1/3 innings while giving up five runs on six hits.  Three of the six hits were home runs, all were solo shots.  The left hander fanned two and walked none.   John Brebbia got the final two outs of the fourth without further damage.  Brett Cecil followed with two scoreless innings and Kevin Siegrist pitched a scoreless seventh.  Trevor Rosenthal began the eighth, but surrendered three runs without recording an out.  Seung-Hwan Oh got the three outs necessary to end the inning without further runs crossing the plate.  Sam Tuivailala pitched a scoreless ninth.  Rosenthal took the loss.

Matt Carpenter was 3-for-5, including a solo home run in the seventh inning.  Carpenter drove in two and scored two. Kolten Wong was 2-for-4.  Jose Martinez drove in a run, and Dexter Fowler had a pinch hit RBI. 

Fowler was caught stealing for the first time.  Cecil picked a runner off first base.

 

Wednesday, June 14 - Cardinals 6, Brewers 7

The Brewers edged the Cardinals in the third game of the series.  Mike Leake did not pitch particularly well, giving up six runs on nine hits in six innings pitched.  The right hander struck out three and walked two and picked up his sixth loss of the season and fourth in a row.  Kevin Siegrist allowed one run in the seventh before  Matt Bowman and Brett Cecil pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth.

Aledmys Diaz was 2-for-4.  The shortstop blasted a two run home run in the eighth inning and scored twice.  Matt Carpenter was 2-for-3 with an RBI.  Jose Martinez plated two on a second inning triple, and Kolten Wong followed with an RBI double.

 

Thursday, June 15 - Cardinals 4, Brewers 6

In the final game of the series, the Cardinals again came out on the short end to drop three of four at home to the first-place Brew Crew.  St. Louis put two on the board in the first inning on RBI singles by Stephen Piscotty and Aledmyz Diaz, but the Brewers came back quickly to tie it up.  The Redbirds returned the favor to the Brewers twice, scoring in innings three and five to tie the game after the Brewers went ahead by one. It wasn’t until the ninth that the Cardinals were not able to answer.

Dexter Fowler hit a solo home run in the third and was 2-for-4 with two RBI.  Matt Carpenter was 2-for-4 with two runs scoredPiscotty had an outfield assist, throwing out Eric Thames at home.

Michael Wacha continued to struggle with staying in games.  The right hander pitched only four innings, giving up four runs on seven hits, including a home run.  Wacha fanned five and walked three.  John Brebbia followed Wacha with two scoreless innings.  Kevin Siegrist and Trevor Rosenthal each pitched a scoreless inning.  Seung-Hwan Oh pitched the ninth and gave up the two winning runs.

 

Friday, June 16 - Cardinals 11 at Orioles 2

In the first game of a weekend interleague series in Baltimore, the Cardinals bats came out with a roar.  Eight of the 11 Redbirds runs scored via the long ball.  Home runs from Paul DeJong, Matt Carpenter, Dexter Fowler, Tommy Pham and Jedd Gyorko were the featured attraction.  DeJong blasted a two run shot in the fourth inning and was 3-for-4 with three RBI and three runs scored.  Carpenter was 2-for-3 and hit a two run home run in the sixth.  Fowler followed Carpenter in the sixth with a solo shot.  He was 2-for-3 with two runs driven in.  Pham thumped a two run long ball in the seventh and was 2-for-5 with two runs scored.  Gyorko’s only hit was a ninth inning solo home run.  Jose Martinez scored twice and was 2-for-4.  Stephen Piscotty was hitless but plated a run on a sac fly.

Starter Carlos Martinez was very good, pitching six innings of one run ball on four hits.  The right hander fanned eight and walked three.  Brett Cecil pitched a scoreless seventh.  Sam Tuivailala surrendered a run on a solo home run in his two innings of relief.  Martinez earned his sixth win of the season.

 

Saturday, June 17 - Cardinals 7 at Orioles 15

The Orioles turned the tables in the second game of the series, routing the Cardinals by eight runs.  The Redbirds did manage to put seven runs on the board, but the Orioles bats could not be contained.

Adam Wainwright had his worst outing of a disappointing season.  The veteran right hander lasted only 1 2/3 innings, and gave up nine runs on seven hits, including three home runs.  Tyler Lyons pitched 3 1/3 innings, surrendering three additional runs, striking out seven and walking one.  John Brebbia allowed two more runs in his two innings of work.  Matt Bowman pitched the eighth and relinquished one unearned run.  Wainwright suffered the loss, his fifth.

On offense, the hitters collected seven runs on 10 hits.  Paul DeJong hit his second long ball of the series, a two run shot in the fourth inning.  Dexter Fowler blasted a three run home run in the sixth, for his 12th home run of the season.  Fowler was 2-for-5.  Jedd Gyorko was 2-for-5 and Yadier Molina was 2-for-3 with an RBI.

Eric Fryer, in for Molina, had a passed ball in the eighth which resulted in the unearned run for Bowman.

 

Sunday, June 18 - Cardinals 5 at Orioles 8

St. Louis suffered defeat at the hands of Baltimore once again in the rubber game of the series.  Lance Lynn was not sharp, as he gave up seven runs on nine hits, including four home runs, in 4 2/3 innings.  The right hander fanned five and issued two free passes.  Kevin Siegrist surrendered an additional run in his 2/3 of an inning of relief.  Matt Bowman, Trevor Rosenthal, and Brett Cecil combined for the remaining 2 2/3 scoreless innings.

The long ball was again prominent.  Stephen Piscotty hit two solo home runs, one in the second inning, and one in the fourth.  Dexter Fowler added a two run shot in the eighth, and Yadier Molina had a solo shot in the eighth.  Fowler was 2-for-3 and Piscotty was 2-for-4.

Fowler was caught stealing for the second time in the past week.

 

Big Picture

The Cardinals ended the week 2-5.  They are now 5.5 games back of the Brewers and three games back of the Cubs.  They are also only a half-game ahead of the fourth place Pirates. 

Of additional note is the fact the team is already 12 games of the last Wild Card, making the division race all the more important.

Since sweeping the Phillies, the Cardinals have not had a good showing against better teams.  Pitching has regressed, with four of the five starters pitching poor games during the week.  The offense has picked up, but has been outscored by the opponents’ offense due to bad pitching.  The tables have reversed; what was the strength, starting pitching, has now become the main weakness in the past week.  In other words, the Cardinals have been unable to get all of their component parts operating efficiently at the same time.  This must change within the 4-6 week window as outlined last week by John Mozeliak.

The Redbirds are now barely holding third place in the NL Central and are falling farther behind the first and second place teams.

 

NL Central Standings

  W L % GB
Milwaukee 38 33 0.535 -
Chicago Cubs 34 34 0.500 2.5
St. Louis 31 37 0.456 5.5
Pittsburgh 31 38 0.449 6
Cincinnati 29 39 0.426 7.5

Who’s Hot

Over the past seven days (does not contain recent Sunday game results):

http://www.scout.com/player/88993-dexter-fowler?s=321

Dexter Fowler is batting .440 with an OPS of 1.441.  He has 4 HRs, one double, and 12 RBI.

Kolten Wong is batting .429 with an OPS of 1.143 in 14 plate appearances.  He had 4 doubles and 3 RBI.

http://www.scout.com/player/200624-paul-dejong?s=321

Paul DeJong is batting .455 with an OPS of 1.500 in 12 plate appearances.  He has 2 HRs and 5 RBI.

Matt Carpenter is batting .440 with an OPS of 1.483.  He has 2 HRs, 6 doubles, and 6 RBI.

Jose Martinez is batting .273 with an OPS of 1.002.  He has 2 HRs, one triple, one double, and 6 RBI.

http://www.scout.com/player/144067-carlos-martinez?s=321

Carlos Martinez has an ERA of 1.50 and a WHIP of 1.17.

Brett Cecil has an ERA of 0.00 and a WHIP of 0.50.

 

Who’s Not

Over the past seven days (does not contain recent Sunday game results):

Stephen Piscotty is batting .150 and has an OPS of .367.

Eric Fryer is batting .091 and has an OPS of 1.82 in 11 plate appearances.

Adam Wainwright has an ERA of 14.85 and a WHIP of 2.40.

Mike Leake has an ERA of 9.00 and a WHIP of 1.83.

Michael Wacha has an ERA of 9.00 and a WHIP of 2.50.

Trevor Rosenthal has an ERA of 13.50 and a WHIP of 2.50.

Seung-Hwan Oh has an ERA of 12.00 and a WHIP of 2.33.

 

A Look at Cardinals Lineups

The lineups over the last seven games (does not contain recent Sunday game):

The leadoff hitter has been Matt Carpenter.

The number 2 hitter has been Dexter Fowler for six games, and Tommy Pham for one game.

The number 3 hitter has been Stephen Piscotty for five games, Pham for one game, and Jose Martinez for one game.

The number 4 hitter has been Jedd Gyorko for six games and Martinez for one game.

The number 5 hitter has been Yadier Molina for five games, Aledmys Diaz for one game, and Kolten Wong for one game.

The number 6 hitter has been Diaz for five games, Pham for one game, and Diaz for one game.

The number 7 hitter has been Martinez for three games, Pham for two games, Wong for one game, and Greg Garcia for one game.

The number 8 hitter has been Eric Fryer for two games, and one game each for DeJong, Wong, Martinez, Garcia, and Chad Huffman.

 

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

 

Transactions

6/11 The Cardinals claimed LHP Sean Gilmartin off waivers from the New York Mets and optioned him to Memphis.

6/12 The Cardinals optioned 3B Paul DeJong to the Memphis Redbirds.

6/13 The Cardinals released 3B Jhonny Peralta.

6/13 The Cardinals recalled RHP Sam Tuivailala from the Memphis Redbirds.

6/13 The Cardinals recalled LHP Marco Gonzales from the Memphis Redbirds (26th man for DH).

6/14 The Cardinals optioned LHP Marco Gonzales to the Memphis Redbirds.

6/15 The Cardinals placed 2B Kolten Wong on the 10-day disabled list.

6/15 The Cardinals recalled 3B Paul DeJong from the Memphis Redbirds.

6/16 Brett Cecil changed his uniform number to 27.

 

Injury Report

2B Kolten Wong was placed on the 10-day DL with a right tricep strain.

 

Looking Ahead

The Cardinals travel to Philadelphia following the series in Baltimore.  The team has an off day Monday, then begin a three-game set with the Phillies on Tuesday. Starters will be Mike Leake, Michael Wacha and Carlos Martinez.

Following Philadelphia, St. Louis returns home to take on the Pirates in a weekend series.  Next Monday, the Cardinals will make up an earlier rained out game against the Reds.  The team then travels to Phoenix for three against the Diamondbacks.

After Arizona, St. Louis returns home for a weekend series against the Nationals at Busch Stadium.

The Cardinals’ regular season schedule can be found here.

 

Blast from the Past

There once was two major league baseball teams in St. Louis.  Most Cardinals fans probably know this, but some young fans might not.  The other team was known as the St. Louis Browns, and if you google “St. Louis Browns” the top entry will be “Baltimore Orioles” This is because the team once known as the Browns is now the Orioles.

Our current Cardinals just finished a series with the Orioles.  It didn’t turn out as hoped.  The Orioles as most know is an American League team, and the Cardinals only play them about once every three years.  The St. Louis Browns were located in St. Louis from 1901 through the 1953 season and were also then an American League team.  Prior to St. Louis, the Browns were located in Milwaukee and were the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Browns and the Cardinals played each other in the 1944 World Series, which the Cardinals won in six games.  The great Stan Musial played on the 1944 Cardinals and hit .304 with one home run and two RBI in the Series.

The Browns would never have another winning season after 1944.  In 1949, the Browns were purchased by Bill DeWitt Sr., father of the current owner of the Cardinals.  DeWitt sold the Browns in 1951 to the former owner of the Cleveland Indians, Bill Veeck.  Veeck attempted to run the Cardinals out of St. Louis. He hired many former Cardinals players and hired Rogers Hornsby as manager. 

The attempt almost worked, as the Cardinals were in difficult straits, because the owner, Fred Saigh, was convicted of tax evasion and was forced to sell the team.  It seemed the Cardinals were going to relocate to Houston, but at the last moment, Saigh sold the team to Anheuser-Busch.  The sale kept the Cardinals in St. Louis, and forced Veeck to move his team, ultimately to Baltimore to become the Orioles in 1954, where the team remains to this day.

The current Cardinals lost two of three to the Orioles over the weekend.  The former St. Louis Browns may have gotten a bit of revenge in the process.

 

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