A Mid-Season Cardinals Check-In With Sports Columnist Benjamin Hochman
At the All-Star Break, the St. Louis Cardinals are tied for third in the NL Central and are eight games out of first place in the division. The offseason signing of star third baseman Nolan Arenado from the Colorado Rockies had many fans optimistic about the Cardinals’ prospects going into this season.
But the Cardinals have five injured starting pitchers and are giving competitors more walks than ever before. Relief pitchers walked 13.6% of batters in the first half of the 2021 Major League Baseball season. In the past 50 years, the only team whose bullpen walked a higher percentage was the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2000.
On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, guest host Jonathan Ahl checked in with Benjamin Hochman, sports columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. They discussed the Cardinals' run in the MLB season so far, and whether the team might make moves before the July 30 trade deadline.
“There's definitely a lot of frustration and a lot of feelings going on on the mound there for St. Louis. But it doesn't matter if the guys can't hit — and most of the guys are not hitting well at all,” Hochman said.
However, with the second half of the season beginning tonight, Hochman said he is not giving up hope.
The Cardinals have Arenado, whom Hochman considers to be one of the most dynamic ballplayers alive. He also said that one of the team’s better players, first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, is trending up.
Hochman noted that in August, 24 of the 27 games will be against teams that currently have losing records.
“If they're just playing good baseball heading into August, there is some optimism they can go on a run and maybe — 10 years later — it's 2011 all over again,” he said.
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer, Emily Woodbury, Evie Hemphill and Lara Hamdan. Paola Rodriguez is our production assistant. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr.