Dry those eyes Cardinal fans! The Redbirds have already clinched a playoff berth. They will be going to the playoffs for their fourth consecutive year. They did that last Sunday, when they secured at least a wildcard spot, but their real goal is the Central Division lead. This will allow them to avoid the wildcard round and give them a better standing at the start of post-season. With only five games to go and a two and a half game lead over the second place Pirates the Cards magic number is down to four now, which didn’t make any sense to me at first. This magic number is the minimum sum of Cardinal wins and Pirates losses that will ensure a Redbird division title. With only five more games to play, I thought that the magic number should only be three, but then I consulted the Pirates schedule and found that they have six more games. If the Pirates win all six of their games, then the Cardinals still need to win at least four more games. It’s like magic!
Adam Wainwright, the Cardinal ace was in fine form yesterday. He picked up his twentieth victory of the season, in an 8-0 win over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. But he is not likely to pick up a Cy Young Award this year, because Dodger phenom, Clayton Kershaw, beat him to the punch last weekend, also against the Cubs and also at Wrigley. Interestingly, Wainwright’s only other twenty-game season was also notched at Wrigley. In the Cardinal Hall of Fame, Wainwright joins only two other Cardinal pitchers that have obtain twenty wins in the last fifty years, Joaquin Andujar (twice) and the great Bob Gibson (five times). In the Cardinal Hall of Fame the top five Redbird players of all time are listed for all of the important stats, Homers, RBI, Strikeouts, etc. In addition to the all time greats, the active roster player with the best numbers in that stat is also listed, so that fans can see where today’s players stack up against the greats. For strikeouts, Wainwright is listed twice, once as an active player, but also at second on the all time list, right after Gibson.
Last Sunday, was talk like a pirate day. This silly little holiday allows any swashbuckling want-to-be to swagger around for the day, with a bandana on their head and a black eye patch on to hide behind, all the while crying out, “Arrrgh!” Let’s hope that next Sunday, the end of the regular season, Pirate fans sound more like this, “Arrrgh, damn Cardinals!” So, dry those eyes Cardinal fans, you have nothing to cry about, except for tears of joy.