Don't count the Cardinals out just yet

Posted by Scott Wuerz on August 17, 2013 

The reason baseball is so awesome is the same reason it's so frustrating: It's completely unpredictable.

It seems like, no matter what happens, no one is ever REALLY out of a game or the pennant race. It seems like the more lopsided the match-up, the more likely the underdog is to win.

The Cardinals, who have tortured fans for three weeks with absolutely awful play seemed to be poised to go to third place in the National League Central Division. Their kryptonite, a tough lefty pitcher, stood on the hill to challenge an offense that has lately gone completely dormant.

But Joe Kelly, a guy manager Mike Matheny seemed to be dedicated to keeping out of the starting rotation at any cost, pitched six shutout innings and the Birds managed to score a run here and there despite not tallying many hits.

The Cardinals, who have killed themselves with soft play lately, relocated their aggressiveness Saturday. The game seemed to turn when centerfielder Jon Jay tagged up on a pop-up about 20 yards beyond the infield dirt. Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro caught the ball and then dropped his head and shoulders in relief. Jay saw the lapse in concentration and made a bee line for the dish, just beating Castro's throw for an important run.

Not only did the Cardinals win, but the Diamondbacks beat the Pirates and the Brewers beat the Reds to bring St. Louis back to within two games of first place of the division while extending their cushion over Cincinnati to a game and a half. 

The Pirates must be at least a little frustrated that as poorly as the Redbirds have played that they haven't been able to put them away.

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