15 St. Louis Cardinals Off To Hot Starts
Roger Dean Stadium- Jupiter, FL
After 16 games, Saint Louis sits at .500 in the Grapefruit League despite getting off to a monstrous start. During the first full week of spring, the Cardinals scored an average of over eight runs per game and put up double diget runs three days in a row. The pitching was strong and yielded only one bad outing in an 8-8 tie.
They got hot again the following week when they rode a four game win streak, which saw them again flex their offensive muscle averaging eight runs a game.
Here in mid-March, the Cardinals are in the mist of a three game losing streak which has seen the once-potent offense only score three runs in as many games.
Hype ran wild over the amazing performance of outfield prospect Oscar Taveras and the emergence of pitcher Michael Wacha. Position battles are heating up and the competition for the last spot in the rotation has come down to two men.
As we look at who is impressing so far, you may see some regulars noticeably absent from this list. Yadier Molina is playing well, but most of his time has been spent in the World Baseball Classic. David Freese is having a decent — but not great — start hitting .286. Matt Holliday has a terrific 1.032 OPS, but is only hitting .214. Starter Adam Wainwright has been fairly successful, but hitters are getting around on him judging by his .349 BAA.-Michael Augustine is a writer for Rant Sports covering the Saint Louis Cardinals. Follow him on Twitter and add him to your circles on Google Plus
Robinson, off to the strongest start, leads the team with a 1.525 OPS, three home runs, 11 RBIs and 15 hits. Robinson also holds a .500 batting average after 30 at-bats.
Descalso has 11 hits in 35 at-bats to go with an .819 OPS as he battles for an infield starting job.
Garcia is looking very good so far with a 1.80 ERA with seven strikeouts in three starts.
Kozma is showing he's ready to be a starter, hitting .382 with a 1.064 OPS through 11 games.
Wacha has been most impressive through 9.2 innings, having not allowed a single earned run along with 13 strikeouts.
With an uncertain future, Adams doesn't seem distracted, hitting .323 and slugging .548.
Reliever Salas has thrown four innings and held hitters to a 0.77 BAA with a WHIP of 0.25.
The relatively unknown Fornataro has pitched five innings and holds an ERA of 1.80 along with a 1.00 WHIP.
Fresh off a new contract, Craig is already proving his worth with an OPS of .967 in 24 plate appearances.
Kelly is looking to grab that fifth spot in the rotation, holding a 2.25 ERA and batters to a .143 BAA.
Taveras has cooled off a bit, but is still has an OPS of .872 with six runs scored in 12 games.
The veteran Choate is holding his own in seven relief appearances, allowing just one earned run with a WHIP of 0.94.
Slugging .579 through 14 games, second baseman Wong is giving the Cards something to think about this month.
Blazek has made five relief appearances and produced five strikeouts with an ERA of 1.80.
Carpenter is in the mix for a starting infield position and looking great, hitting .367 with four doubles through 11 games.
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