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

Cardinal talk: KXnO FOX Sports Radio: Wrigley opener

St. Louis Cardinals weekly chat on KXnO FOX Sports Radio 1460 in Des Moines.

Late Friday afternoon, I joined Ken Miller and Jim Brinson on KXnO FOX Sports Radio 1460 in Des Moines in our regular series to discuss the St. Louis Cardinals, “Cardinal Talk.” This week, we discussed the Cardinals current weekend in Chicago, with the conversation occurring during the 11th inning.

Cardinals followers in central Iowa can again catch St. Louis Cardinals radio broadcasts on KXnO as well as my regular segment each week throughout the season, either over the air or via streaming. My appearances are sponsored by WCI Pools and Spas.

Click here for audio: Brian Walton with Ken Miller and Jim Brinson (6:23)

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36 Responses to “Cardinal talk: KXnO FOX Sports Radio: Wrigley opener”

  1. crdswmn says:

    The Cardinals have hit Travis Wood well. If they can’t score a bunch or runs off him then they should just go home.

    I’m serious.

    • crdswmn says:

      Well, they won so I am not going to insist they go home just yet. But they just have to play better. These close games against the Cubs can be avoided. This offense as it is playing now is not going to make it against the Nats and the Reds.

  2. blingboy says:

    I’m glad to see they won today. Too bad about yesterday. I wish they could have sucked less for Carp.

  3. blingboy says:

    Everybody is tired of talking about Jackson, but having thought some more about it, there are two possible reasons why the Cards would not take advantage of the chances they have had to see him play short at this level.

    As I’ve said before, one reason is if his defense would obviously be superior to Furcal’s. That would make things awkward next year, especially if Furcal struggles.

    Another reason is if, after having seen Jackson at short all year in AAA, the org has decided he is not what they are looking for in a shortstop of the future. In that case they would not care about seeing him play short at this level. He would just be here as a warm body to add middle infield depth to the September roster. Which, by the way, is how he is being used.

  4. Nutlaw says:

    The Braves have lined up Medlen as their starter for the wild card game. Not looking forward to that.

    • crdswmn says:

      Yeah, even if the Cardinals manage to hold on to WC2, they don’t have a chance against Medlen the way they are playing. Now, it they were playing like they were this time last year, I would like their chances.

  5. crdswmn says:

    This team doesn’t want this like they did last year. Oh they say they do, they give good interviews and say all the right things, but their body language gives them away. Yesterday during the game the TV cameras focused on the dugout after Matt Carpenter hit that single in the 8th that looked like it was going to start a rally, and everyone was politely clapping like they were at some boring concert that they couldn’t get out of. Even Ricky and Dan remarked on the lack of emotion. Then when Beltran tied it with the HR, they showed the dugout again. Most of them didn’t even bother to get up off the bench. It wasn’t like last year when they were all standing at the railing, fist pumping and yelling when something good happened.

    I don’t know what is the reason for the difference. Maybe they are all just too tired. Maybe there is just not enough motivation. Whatever the reason, this is no where near last year’s team in spirit. It’s just not there. There will be no 12 in 12.

    • blingboy says:

      The reason for the difference is a hard one, but the differences from last year can be considered.

      LaRussa is gone. Schmalbert is gone. Berkman and Carp have not contributed. That is all I can think of right off. Should we conclude that it must be one of, or some combination of those factors?

  6. blingboy says:

    Nice win today. Kozma is way better at taking advantage of opportunity that Greene. I’m glad he’s looking pretty good. I’m still trying to grasp the reality that Pete Kozma could be the starting shortstop in the WS this year.

    • JumboShrimp says:

      Pete is outplaying Raffy. No contest.

      • crdswmn says:

        Pete is a product of the vagaries of small sample size. Three weeks of play doesn’t wipe out 6 seasons of sucking in the minors.

      • JumboShrimp says:

        Kozma raised his OPS by about 15 percent over 2011 at Memphis. He hits enough for a SS. Having Furcal out of commission is a great break for Pete, because he gets to play, not gather dust.

        • crdswmn says:

          Wow, he went from really really really sucking to just really really sucking. Cause his OPS in 2012 was like third worst in the entire PCL

          • JumboShrimp says:

            SS is a position with a low average OPS. Memphis is the best pitchers park in the PCL. Is it surprising a Memphis SS would have a low OPS within the high scoring PCL? No. Is your factoid relevant? No.

            In 2008, we were treated to Cesar Izturis racking up a 630 OPS. Seattle fans got to enjoy Brendan Ryan’s woeful 575 during 2011, IIRC. Is it plausible Pete Kozma could outperform 575 or 630 at the major league level, based on his OPS at Memphis during 2012? Yes.
            He is doing so already. Is this surprising? No.

            • Brian Walton says:

              C’mon, Jumbo. It may not be relevant to you because it isn’t pretty. On the same team during the same season facing the same pitchers in the same ballparks, Jackson’s OPS was 83 points higher than Kozma. Journeyman Eugenio Velez’ OPS was 160 points higher. We are not talking about a handful of September at-bats here, but instead, an entire season’s worth of data.

            • Brian Walton says:

              And as soon as I typed that, Kozma homered off Houston’s emergency reliever.

              Hmm… Perhaps there is a common thread. Success against the Cubs and Astros…

              • JumboShrimp says:

                I am not sure Velez is a SS. Our gap is at SS.

                Kozma can play SS. Pete had a 647 OPS at Memphis. Is a Memphis 647 good enough to contribute to the majors at SS? Probably. Better yet, he seems to be meeting expectations.

                Who would I rather have playing SS? The great, hard playing Raffy Furcal, unable to hit, because of sore back and lately unable to play because of elbow? No. I would rather have a healthy SS. This is where Pete comes in.

                • crdswmn says:

                  If I have to have a bad hitting SS, I would want one that can play defense like Brendan Ryan. That has value that the team can use. Kozma is not even close so his value to the team is extremely low. Thankfully you are not making out rosters, because if you were, we would be the Astros.

            • Brian Walton says:

              Just for grins, the major league equivalent of Kozma’s 2012 with Memphis is:

              .203/.253/.298/.551

  7. blingboy says:

    Nice top of the 2nd. Who does Descalso think he is, Kozma?
    Holy cow, a dong. Pete is having none of that from DD.

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