Game 59- Jake Westbrook still sucks
In the Cardinals first inter-league game of the year, the Red Birds squared off against the second place Cleveland Indians. Jake Westbrook was unable to provide a sharp start and the offense was unable to drive in runs. It was a tough game to watch as the Cardinals (30-29) fell to the Indians 6-2, but I have a feeling the Cardinals will turn it around and have a strong home stand. Thank you for reading my second recap and I hope you enjoy.
This was Jake Westbrook‘s first start against his former team the Cleveland Indians since he was traded to the Cardinals in 2009. Cleveland is where Jake enjoyed the most success and longevity in his career. In 9 seasons with the Tribe,Westbrook was 69-69 with a 4.29 ERA and 655 strikeouts, he even managed to make an All Star game back in 2004 as a member of the Indians. This was also an important start for Westbrook as the Cardinals really need him to rebound with two starters on the DL and with the struggles of the pitching staff as a whole. However Westbrook was also well too familiar, pitching only six innings and allowing four runs (three earned). Westbrook needs to get his act together especially with a team that is struggling all around in pitching.
Matt Adams had one of the few positive moments of the night getting his first career pinch hit, which also led to the teams first two runs. It is nice to have this guy on the team but I also think it is important for him to start. I know that is hard to do with Craig, Beltran, and no clear cut center fielder, but if Adams is going to be in the big leagues he has got to get regular playing time.
After another awful start from Westbrook, Maikel Cleto came in to try to keep the Indians to only four runs and he was unable to do so. Johnny Damon went deep with a two run homer which really sucks to see. The Cardinals bullpen has not been very good all season long and especially now, John Mozeliak might be best off finding some sort of way to improve this bullpen before it is too late. However not all of the bullpen was bad, as recently recalled Fernando Salas and Sam Freeman both had shutout innings.
Yadier Molina continued his successful season by adding three more hits one of which nearly left the park. Molina is the true leader and face of this team and it is nice to see him having such success both offensively and defensively. Molina raised his average to .337 which is easily leading the team, if he keeps this up people will forget all about that huge pay raise that Molina will be getting next season, HE DESERVES IT PEOPLE!
Twice the Cardinals nearly went deep in this game. One came from the red hot bat of Yadier Molina which resulted in a double. The other one was a hard hit ball from Carlos Beltran that just missed the wall and fell into the glove of the right fielder. Imagine how different this game would have been with those homers, that is what makes baseball so special, it truly is a game of inches.
Player of the game:
Yadier Molina, his three hit night really shows how strong of a player he is. All hail the captain!
Westbrook was unable to have a solid start, the bullpen was unable to do their job,the defense struggled with 3 errors, and the offense struggled to bring home their base runners. It is games like these that really hurts to see, when all aspects of the team go the wrong way, hopefully the Cardinals can rebound and finish the series strong.