The Troubled Start of the Cardinals


photo courtesy of AP Newsroom

St. Louis Cardinals’ Nolan Arenado hits an RBI triple off Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Justin Steele during the first inning of a baseball game on May 10.

Kody Moore, Staff writer

Going into the 2023 season, the Cardinals were projected to be first in the NL Central Division by winning over 90 games. But a month into the season, the Cards have the worst record in the entire NL and just got off an eight-game losing streak.

With a dismal record of just 10 wins and 20 losses, the team has been plagued by inconsistency with hitters and bad pitchers.

The Cardinals’ fans raised their first red flag on April 26 by sending out their top prospect, Jordan Walker. For the Cardinals, that makes no sense at all.  However, they claimed that he was sent there to improve the defensive and striking launch angle. 

This is completely ridiculous. Going up against MLB pitchers on a daily basis is very different than getting repetitions in AAA. He’s only 20 years old; by August, he’ll likely start hitting home runs. In the MLB, he is still batting .274 on 73 at-bats. It will be difficult for him to stretch because of his fielding, but it is still preferable for Walker to stay up in the majors.

The 2023 season has gotten off to a difficult start for Nolan Arenado. He has had trouble getting into a groove at the plate in the early weeks of the season, hitting significantly below his usual level. Nolan Arenado started the season slow batting with an average of .232 with only three home runs in 142 at-bats.

It is still too soon, in my opinion, to conclude that Arenado’s performance is in this long season. He is a player that can randomly hit for a .400  batting average in a month with over 10 home runs.

For the pitching, I thought it would be bad, but it looks extremely terrible. I watched at least 5 games of decent starting pitching allowing us to make it into the middle innings. And then there to bullpen completely destroys all chances of the Cardinals winning. The Cards have the pieces and prospects to make the bullpen better but don’t want to make the decision.

One example includes 24-year-old pitcher Guillermo Zuniga, the RHP who only appeared in one MLB game this year and was dominated. In the one inning, Zuniga struck out 2 of the 3 batters he faced. After that appearance, many fans thought that he will be a key component to the bullpen. But the next day, he was sent back down to AAA.