Attitude And Culture Issues? No Way!

St. Louis Cardinals president of baseball ops hinted to media members Friday that the team could use a change in attitude and culture.

And to that, for the last season and a half, I say: No shit, Sherlock.

Mozeliak has always said that it is insane to do the same thing over again and expect different results. Well. He went into this season doing just that.

Manager Mike Matheny, over the past year and a half, has his guys. One of those guys, is Matt Carpenter.

Nice homerun! Here’s some cold water, diva.

I would say that in the past, I have been a fan of Carpenter. Over this season, his status has considerably changed for me. And Mike Matheny’s babying of him doesn’t help his case.

First thoughts. What position does he even play? He’s  already played first and second. Positions his been made to learn, because his bat plays.

He will only hit in leadoff. And he cannot seem to get comfortable hitting anywhere else. Leading off, he’ll get on base or hit home runs. Hitting third with runners on base? Strikes out, argues with the umpire about said strike out or hits into outs or serious  baserunning blunders.

Yes, this is from seasons past, but it’s pretty happenstance for Carpenter.

But does he answer for this? He is media unavailable when this happens.

On Thursday, Trevor Rosenthal has a blunder in which he has a brain fart and forgets to go cover first base when Carpenter busts his ass to make the play. Jose Reyes slides head first to first and the winning run scores for a Met walk-off victory.  Gross. More importantly, do they chalk it up to a really bad play, maybe discuss it behind closed doors and play great the next day? Nope. Matt proceeds to call out Rosenthal’s blunder, saying he can’t do that and that he knows better. … True. But do you go and tell that to that to the media, compounding an already bad situation to just make it worse and make the team look like it has the problems it has?

No. That’s not what you do.

That’s not what a team with good leadership does. You do not call each other out publicly. Miguel Montero got DFA’d the next day by the Chicago Cubs for calling out Jake Arrieta for a blunder. Nothing has happened to either Matt or Rosenthal.

And. Unless Mo takes over the situation, I doubt anything will and the situation in that clubhouse is just going to get worse.

And it just makes the issues you see Matheny have with his treatment of other players … Kolten Wong, Randal Grichuk, Carlos Martinez (at times with the ‘maturity’ comments), Tommy Pham, et. al … The very perception that he doesn’t care for them, just more glaring. I was a fan of Matheny when he took over the reins as Cardinals manager. I bought in on that leader of men, bull shit. Sure, Mike has his moments. But the last two seasons, that has all deteriorated for me. Perception matters.

Also? That he keeps John Mabry on as hitting coach makes it worse.

So yes, I do hope we see Mo come through on changing the attitude and culture of the team. A true miracle would have to occur for this team to better itself into contention. So, like Mo said, change for now and in the future. If not, 2018 will be just more of the same. And I don’t know if this fan can handle more of the same.

I just expect more from the St. Louis Cardinals.

Thoughts on the Cardinals Through 57

The St. Louis Cardinals are 57 games into the 2016 season. So let’s discuss how they have done thus far.

  • They are 10.5 games back of the Chicago Cubs and in third place, behind the Pittsburgh Pirates. We knew the Cubs were going to be good this season. And they are. The Cardinals have a series this weekend against the Pirates in Pittsburgh. Our birds could gain some ground.

    Welcome back, Jhonny!
  • Kolten Wong optioned to Memphis. He’s been slumping and just not playing well. This is something we’ve become used to with Kolten. He’s gone through spats like this before where he will seemingly try too hard and his whole game stinks. He’ll get benched or sent to Memphis to work things out. I, for one, hoped the Cardinals extending Wong to a  5 year/$25.5 million deal would give him the assurance that the team trusts him and wants him to succeed at second base with them. Ease some of his anxiety. Thankfully, the team is in a decent position to allow Wong time to work through it all and get his confidence back at the plate. It will be great to have the player we know he can be out on the field.
  • This team isn’t what anyone expected! That’s baseball. And it’s awesome. The team is going to be taking an interesting turn in the next few days with Jhonny Peralta returning to the team … to play third base.
  • This opportunity happened with the amazingness that has been rookie shortstop Aledmys Diaz. Holy crap is that kid amazing! Before this week, Jedd Gyorko, Greg Garcia and Wong have had chances at second. With Peralta back, Matt Carpenter is going to get a chance at second. He’s had some success there before!
  • And then, first base. Matt Adams has put together a nice little run that shows fans should have never really counted him out. He seems to just need some time to heal and get some reps at the position. He’s become one of the best hitters on the team. And then Brandon Moss. Who knew he’d be such an important part of this team. He leads the team in home runs, most of which come from pinch hitting appearances.  Matt Holliday has also gotten some time in at first base as the team has so many options in the outfield now.
  • Speaking of the outfield. Stephen Piscotty has become my favorite member of the team. He provides outstanding coverage in the outfield, a great arm and he’s pretty good with the bat. He flat out hustles. Love it. Randal Grichuk has been streaky this season … going through massive slumps at the plate and then coming along with a nice jolt of power every few days. He needs to get more consistent. And it seems to be something he’s working on. Jeremy Hazelbaker seemed to be the find of the offseason in April providing depth in the field and off the bench. He’s dipped a little bit and wouldn’t be surprised if we see him sent to Memphis soon to get some work in and allow Tommy Pham the opportunity to come back and make a difference.
  • Matt Holliday has been pretty awesome for an old guy this season! He’s done some great work in the outfield, has been a surprise option at first base and he’s been clutch with timely hits (Booming homers too!). For years, this fan base has given the team loads of crap for his 7 yrs/$120M deal. The team has an option for 2017 and they need to strongly consider using it.

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