Despite only winning 88 games last season, the St. Louis Cardinals were one of the better teams in baseball in 2012. With the help of their awesome lineup and pitching staff, the Cardinals had one of the best run differentials in all of baseball, which is why I am very optimistic about their 2013 campaign. Although their ace from last season, Kyle Lohse, will not be returning to the staff, they are not short-handed on pitching, seeing as their postseason superstar Trevor Rosenthal is expected to jump into the rotation this upcoming season.
Rosenthal may start out as a back of the rotation pitcher for the Cardinals, but he has the potential to turn out as the team’s best in 2013. Rosenthal showed exactly how dominant he could be when he pitched during the 2012 MLB postseason, mowing down hitters from the Washington Nationals and eventual World Series champions San Francisco Giants. Granted, Rosenthal might not be able to mow down hitters with 98 MPH fastballs as a starter, but it’s good knowing that a starting pitcher can get into that mindset if needed–see Chris Sale if you need further proof of that notion.
If Rosenthal is able to start 25 games, I’m willing to bet he matches Lohse’s production from 2012. He probably won’t match the 211 innings and 16-3 record, but he should be able to make up for that with his strikeout ability.
I really wish I were a Cardinals fan right now. They are in an unbelievable position to make a run for a championship now and in the future and Rosenthal will be a part of both.