The Cardinal Nation blog

Brian Walton's news and commentary on the St. Louis Cardinals (TM) and their minor league system

17 strikeouts one off Cardinals worst outing ever

On Thursday afternoon, the St. Louis Cardinals failed to sweep the Pittsburgh Pirates at Busch Stadium. 17 times during the 6-3 loss, a St. Louis hitter was sat down on strikes. Despite pitching just five innings, Bucs starter Erik Bedard collected 11 of the Ks, including a Pittsburgh-record seven in a row.

The 17 strikeouts is just one off the Cardinals’ worst nine-inning showing ever in this category. On September 10, 1989, 18 Cardinals were fanned by Chicago Cubs pitching in a 4-1, nine-inning loss at Wrigley Field. (link to boxscore)

Researcher Tom Orf pulled the following table, which indicates the Cardinals had just two 16-strikeout nine-inning games prior to Thursday. It was their 30th game of at least 14 strikeouts.

Strikeouts in a nine-inning game, St. Louis Cardinals hitters, history

Date Opp Rslt PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO
9/10/1989 CHC L 1-4 35 32 1 7 0 0 0 1 3 18
5/3/2012 PIT L 3-4 41 34 3 7 4 0 0 3 7 17
9/29/2000 CIN L 1-8 36 30 1 2 0 1 0 0 5 16
8/20/1997 MON W 6-3 44 35 6 8 2 0 1 6 7 16
4/22/2001 HOU L 3-4 34 32 3 6 1 0 2 3 2 15
9/12/1998 HOU L 2-3 35 32 2 5 1 0 0 2 3 15
5/13/1997 PHI L 2-3 32 28 2 3 1 0 2 2 3 15
5/21/1996 HOU W 8-2 42 40 8 13 3 0 0 7 1 15
6/25/1966 HOU L 2-3 35 32 2 7 2 0 0 1 3 15
9/1/2011 MIL W 8-4 38 37 8 10 1 0 4 8 1 14
4/13/2008 SFG L 4-7 42 37 4 12 4 0 1 4 4 14
9/26/2004 COL W 9-3 45 40 9 16 2 0 1 8 3 14
7/18/2001 HOU L 11-17 47 44 11 18 5 0 2 11 2 14
8/27/1999 ATL L 1-2 35 35 1 8 1 0 0 1 0 14
6/25/1999 ARI W 1-0 32 29 1 5 3 0 0 1 2 14
4/26/1998 PHI L 3-9 36 34 3 8 0 1 1 2 2 14
9/27/1995 CHC L 3-5 41 37 3 10 1 0 1 3 3 14
9/25/1988 NYM L 7-9 40 37 7 10 2 0 1 7 2 14
8/22/1984 CIN W 6-3 37 35 6 7 0 0 2 6 2 14
6/24/1984 CHC L 0-5 33 31 0 5 0 0 0 0 1 14
5/21/1984 HOU L 2-3 37 32 2 6 0 0 0 2 5 14
9/23/1983 PHI L 2-6 36 34 2 8 0 1 1 2 1 14
9/21/1982 PHI L 2-5 38 35 2 9 2 0 0 2 2 14
4/19/1980 PIT W 2-1 41 34 2 7 0 0 1 2 5 14
6/9/1978 HOU L 7-11 43 35 7 9 1 1 1 7 7 14
9/9/1977 PHI L 4-11 33 31 4 6 2 0 3 4 2 14
8/31/1971 NYM W 2-1 32 30 2 7 0 0 0 2 2 14
5/20/1966 CIN L 3-5 37 34 3 7 0 0 0 3 1 14
5/31/1959 LAD L 3-5 39 33 3 6 0 0 2 3 6 14
9/6/1941 CIN L 0-2 32 29 0 2 1 0 0 0 3 14

Note the big bulge in the 1980s and 1990s of such games.

Decade 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s
# 1 1 2 3 8 8 5 2

The Cardinals have nothing to be ashamed of or be worried about. Bedard’s career best game was even better – 15 strikeouts. Further, even after the bad day, the Cardinals still only rank fourth in the National League in strikeouts.

Even more importantly, the 2012 Cards are first in the NL in runs scored at 138, with only one club within 20 runs of their total. Further, their league-best batting average of .286 is 20 points higher than the second-place club.

Follow me on Twitter.
Follow The Cardinal Nation Blog on Facebook.

43 Responses to “17 strikeouts one off Cardinals worst outing ever”

  1. blingboy says:

    The starting pitching is even more notable than the hitting. Lets see if Kyle can match Lance at 5-0, and maybe catch him in ERA too. (Lance 1.60; Kyle 1.62) Maybe in WHIP ? (Lance .772; Kyle .840)

    In Westy’s absense, I will point out that Schmalbert grounded to third three times last night. Pulling everything. That’s a bad sign I think.

    There was an article in the LA paper, maybe Orange County Register, about the woes of the Angels top of the lineup, and the crazy combinations Scoiscia is trying (with the 1 and 2) all to no avail, and pointing out the 3 spot remains unchanged. Sounds familiar doesn’t it. Tony would try to address the problem the same way, with the same results.

  2. blingboy says:

    Friday lineup:
    1. Rafael Furcal (S) SS
    2. Jon Jay (L) CF
    3. Matt Holliday (R) LF
    4. Allen Craig (R) 1B
    5. David Freese (R) 3B
    6. Yadier Molina (R) C
    7. Matt Carpenter (L) RF
    8. Skip Schumaker (L) 2B
    9. Kyle Lohse (R) P

    • Nutlaw says:

      I had heard that Craig may not be able to play the outfield yet. I guess that this proves it. Holliday couldn’t slide over to at least let Carpenter handle LF? Sheesh. Have fun out there, buddy.

      • blingboy says:

        You called it, Nut. Too bad we didn’t have Komatsu out there :)

        • Nutlaw says:

          Or Robinson?

          • blingboy says:

            What would be the reason for putting Skip at 2B rather than RF? I guess to get MCarp’s bat in the lineup along with Freese and Craig. And to keep Skip’s bat in the lineup too. The sacrifice defense to get more offense approach. Geesh, that was the problem the first 2/3 of last season.

        • JumboShrimp says:

          When Berkman returns, who will go to Memphis, Shane Robinson or Matt Carpenter?

          • blingboy says:

            Well, Komatsu was the guy not getting any playing time and he was odd man out. Now it seems like Descalso not getting much time, or am I imagining that?

            • blingboy says:

              Looks like about one start a week for the last couple weeks. Same for Greene. Robinson somewhat more.

              I don’t really think we’ll see Beltran spelling Jay in CF, so its a question of will Mike want to use Skip in that role?

              All things considered, when Lance comes back it may be an infielder to go, and if so, I expect it to be DD.

              • JumboShrimp says:

                Skip is also a backup OF, so if we move him out to OF, then one of Descalso and Greene stays, because we have to have a backup middle infielder.
                The Cards are fortunate to have one ML player more than they have roster slots for position players. Either Robinson or Carpenter, being junior guys in seniority, will be sent back to Memphis. I will guess Carpenter. Matt can collect steady at bats for Memphis and be called back in the event of an injury.

              • crdswmn says:

                THAT would not go over well at all. Sending DD down and keeping Greene after the contributions DD made to the team last year, especially in the post season? I’m not saying it won’t happen, because the Komatsu DFA was a surprise to me, but that would rile the fan base like nothing else could.

                • JumboShrimp says:

                  I called the Komatsu departure with conviction and turned out to be correct.
                  I do not think either Greene or Descalso is likely to be sent to Memphis.
                  This season, the guys on the bubble, at the transition point between AAA and the Majors are Carpenter and Robinson. Robinson provides a spot starter at any OF position against a LHP, while Carpenter’s contributions can be filled by Berkman, Craig, Freese, and Descalso. Thus, if we got to full strength healthwise, Matt would probably get some more AAA training. However, since we are seldom at 100 percent healthwise, he should not worry about it.

                  • Nutlaw says:

                    Agreed, Jumbo. They certainly won’t waive Greene to remove him from the roster and Descalso is also unlikely due to his positional versatility. It has to be Carpenter or Robinson.

                    • JumboShrimp says:

                      With Berkman out, Matheny has gone to Skip at 2B, to get a little more offense than Descalso can give. After Berkman returns, we could return to the earlier plan of Greene/Descalso platooning at 2B to give better defense, with Skip becoming an OF spot starter.

  3. WesPowell says:

    “There was an article in the LA paper, maybe Orange County Register, about the woes of the Angels top of the lineup, and the crazy combinations Scoiscia is trying (with the 1 and 2) all to no avail, and pointing out the 3 spot remains unchanged. Sounds familiar doesn’t it. Tony would try to address the problem the same way, with the same results.”

    I liked our results under Tony. 9 post seasons in 16 years. He’s right smack in the middle of the greatest manager of all-time debate.

    • Brian Walton says:

      Can’t one like the bottom line with agreeing with all of the tactics?

    • crdswmn says:

      I want to welcome you Wes, to the board. Now that you are here, you should probably be aware that you will encounter some people who will not always sing Tony LaRussa’s praises. I think most of the regulars would agree that I am the worst in that category. :) As Brian says, it is possible to like the results but not like the tactics (or in my case not like the tactician).

  4. WesPowell says:

    Well, we’ll see if we are in the post season 9 of the next 16 years.

  5. WesPowell says:

    Considering we were in the post season 3 of the previous 27 seasons before LaRussa.

  6. WesPowell says:

    You see, once fans get REALLY spoiled, then they get MORE critical.

  7. JumboShrimp says:

    One vulnerability of this team is people who may need the DL. Furcal, Berkman, Freese, and Beltran have been prone to injuries.

  8. WesPowell says:

    As I have aged I have completely let go of criticizing the coach or the players. Too commonplace for my taste. My schtick is poking fun at the fans. It’s a tough job but someone has to do it, particularly knowing full well that it rules out any victories in blog popularity contests.
    My two sports loves are the Saint Louis Cardinals on the professional level and the Louisville Cardinals on the collegiate. I am coming off the recent basketball season where 90 percent plus of the posters on the Louisville blog that I frequent spent 2 months of the season calling for Pitino to be fired and calling the players an embarrassment to the programs tradition. They then pulled out their pom-poms and pounded their chests like King Kong during the Final Four run.
    It’s all a grand comedy. And they take themselves so seriously.

    • JumboShrimp says:

      Wes, this site is where Brian posts opinion pieces. He sometimes criticizes this or that. Historically, this site has tilted a little negative or whiny or kooky, but generally tolerant and well-mannered. Not a lot of schmoozing or arguing among posters. Mostly about baseball, as opposed to fond recollections of old tv shows. It will probably not be necessary to rip on other posters much. Just let them vent.
      The thing to appreciate is the Cards are a well run organization and make a lot of good personnel decisions. Last summer, some worried about unloading kid Rasmus for Jackson. Now Rasmus has an OPS around 670, while Jon Jay has been super (when not running into fences). When we win, things can get quiet, because there is little to annoy fans and provoke posts.

  9. WesPowell says:

    The general psychological breakdown of the criticism of the baseball manager by the fan is as follows………..If I were the manager we would have won all the games that the team did win. And in addition we would have won the close losses, because I would have done this or that, instead of what the manager actually did. We would even have won some of the rout losses and not had slumps because I would have made such and such line-up changes or delivered stirring locker room pep-talks or struck the fear of God in the team with temper tantrums. In brief—If I was manager we would be about 142-20 every year.

  10. WesPowell says:

    Except in the really extreme cases where it would be 162-0.

  11. blingboy says:

    Schmalbert is the best .194 hitter in baseball.

    • blingboy says:

      Having grounded to third three times Thursday, Our Schmal stepped to the plate in the ninth inning Friday. O-fer so far, he faced a man on 2B, no outs, and the Angels down. At the very least, sound fundamentals would dictate hitting behind the runner allowing him to advance. What did our homerless hombre do? Grounded to third.

      I am prepared to concede that there might be .194 hitters out there who could have at least hit behind the runner, and therefore I will not argue with anyone wishing to disagree with the comment above.

  12. Nutlaw says:

    I have to say that it makes me awfully disappointed to see the Cardinals lose to chumps like the Astros. I know logically that the Cards can’t win them all, but I irrationally expect them to do so in these cases. I was only able to catch the first three innings, but I fully expected them to come back against this AAA squad.

    However, I’m still not worried. With by far the largest run differential in baseball (+61), I expect further coasting against this sad NL Central, as much as I’m sure that that expectation will make me sweat it out along the way. It’s much more fun to be pleasantly surprised, as happened last year.

    • blingboy says:

      After 5 or 6 weeks of putting up offensive and pitching numbers that are not sustainable over the whole season we are only up 2 1/2. That doesn’t bode well for when we cool off.

    • crdswmn says:

      The Astros are better than people think.

    • JumboShrimp says:

      Nutlaw, I agree that it is annoying to drop games to chumps, including the Astros, Cubs, and Pirates. Last night, Beltran and Berkman were out of the lineup against the RHP, so the Astros squeaked out with a win. Matheny is doing the right thing to focus on keeping guys healthy. Its a long season and this is best for the long haul.

      • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

        Sage baseball wisdom Jumbo…………………….. If the Teams goes 3/3 on this trip…….I would be startled.
        That would require Berkman to reenter against AZ at full potency. We aren’t going to beat Miley on Wednesday……..haven’t checked the other match ups really……………. Robinson gets the big pinch hit at bat………..and loops his wrist……….like a slow pitch king……on the first pitch……heading for the Crawfords………. Matheny isn’t stupid………….. he goes down………….will Lance B. attempt a rescue on Sunday? and will he suffer for its………….??????????? You guys have a hard hitting style here……keep it up……..all the best……WC

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.