The St. Louis Cardinals do not have the feel or look of a playoff team in 2011, and unfortunately for Redbirds fans – this has a very similar feel to 2010. Last year, the Cincinnati Reds and the Cardinals had a huge melee before the 1st pitch was thrown in a series in mid-August – and the Reds went on a run like no other (I still feel Reds 2B Brandon Phillips should have been charged by authorities for provoking a brawl, as well as blowing hot air out of his big fat mouth that he can’t back up with his fists…both punishable by 20 years in prison…or at least they should be). The Reds went into August last year with a 58-47 record and came out with a 77-55 record – that’s a 19-8 record for you non-mathematicians. That is what you call the look and feel of a playoff team. The Reds went on to win the division by 5 games. And KARMA was able to come visit Brandon Phillips in the 1st game of the playoffs last year when he made the last out in the 1st game of the divisional series versus the Philadelphia Phillies. Oh yeah – did I mention the last out Phillips allowed the Phillies to celebrate Roy Halladay’s no-hitter?? KARMA! And the Reds were out of the playoffs just like that.
Now it’s August 2011…and I said before the big series in Milwaukee between the Cardinals and the Brewers (which was August 1-3), that Milwaukee should start a brawl…because the Cardinals never play well when emotions are running high or the pressure is on – at least under Tony Larussa that is. Well…it’s Deja Vu. The Brewers threw up and in to Albert Pujols in the 1st game of the series – and IT WAS ON after that. Jason Motte took 2 pitches to hit Ryan Braun (a gray area) for payback on Pujols being hit, Larussa complained to Major League Baseball about the lights at Miller Park when the Cardinals are batting and once again, the Cardinals lost an emotional series to the Brewers in 2011 just like they did in 2010 with the Reds after Phillips was an idiot.
And since August 1st…the Cardinals record 9-9. The Brewers 15-3. And now Milwaukee leads the NL Central by 8 1/2 games going into today. But I will say this about the Brewers…they will not be knocked out playoffs without making some noise. The Reds were knocked out of the playoffs so quickly that most Major League Baseball fans didn’t even know their was a NL Central participant. But not this year…this Brewers team is loaded with starting pitching, a deep and deadly bullpen and a lineup that has Ryan Braun and the 2011 NL MVP to be in Prince Fielder.
Five out of the last 6 years…the first team in MLB to get to 81 wins has went to the World Series…and that team in 2011 is the Philadelphia Phillies. But I will say this – it would not surprise me at all if it is 5 out of the last 7 seasons – and the Brewers are the NL participant in the 2011 World Series.