Cardinals just can't hit with runners on base

Posted by Scott Wuerz on May 10, 2014 

I'm sick of the excuses from the St. Louis Cardinals.

We're tired. We're slumping. We're homesick.

The reason the Cardinals are losing is because of none of those reasons. It's because they can't situationally hit. They do absolutely nothing once they get runners on base. 

Matt Adams, who impressed early this season with the addition of an opposite field stroke to his skills at the plate, has to be hitting the most hollow .300-plus average in the major leagues.

Finally getting a chance to play every day in the big leagues, Adams has 138 plate appearances over 35 games. And he's managed to drive in a measly nine runs. Ridiculous. He easily could have turned the Cardinals Friday night loss into a win by picking up a couple of the six runners he left on base. But with two opportunities to break the game open early he hit into a double play and struck out. On Saturday he left four more runners on base. That's nine ribbies on the season -- and 10 runners left stranded in TWO DAYS.

Sure the Redbirds offense has been anemic. But it's not as if Adams hasn't had opportunities to drive in runs. Batting clean-up much of the time, he has the least runs batted in of any St. Louis regulars.

Allen Craig, who has struggled to hit .200 and subsequently dropped down to the bottom part of the batting order, has driven in 14. And he's on the rise with a .293 average over the last 10 games. Matt Carpenter and Jhonny Peralta have shown signs of life, too.

Meanwhile, Adams is hitting .311. But he's hitting singles instead of home runs because he's seemingly going to the plate with a plan to hit the other way. So his power potential isn't what it used to be. Yet somehow he's still striking out plenty -- 28 times -- while only walking three times.

 I can't blame the St. Louis Cardinals if they want to keep top prospect Oscar Taveras in the minor leagues until June so they can prevent his eventual free agency for another year.

But for the front office to claim that there is no place for him to play with the parent club is ridiculous. 

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