It was painful Sunday night, as a Cardinals fan, to watch Roy Oswalt mow down the Giants.
If only the Redbirds could have come up with some way to accommodate his desire to be traded to St. Louis instead of Philadelphia... While people were torn on whether it was wise to trade top pitching prospect Shelby Miller for the veteran ace, the deal would have helped the Birds in two major ways:
First, obviously he's a top pitcher. Even if the Cardinals had trouble scoring runs, he's the sort of guy that would give you a chance to win games 2-1 or 1-0.
And, second, if the Redbirds dealt minor leaguers to the Astros for Oswalt, they probably wouldn't have had to trade Ryan Ludwick. That would have made the offense better.
It was refreshing to watch Oswalt take command of National League Championship Series game two. He wasn't afraid to pitch inside and his focus was something the Cardinals were sorely lacking.
If Oswalt could have helped prevent the Birds' late season meltdown, it would have been the Cardinals who had the pitching staff to make them the overwhelming favorites in the playoffs.
I can hardly stand to think about the wonderfulness of a rotation of Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright and Oswalt. The only thing that makes it bearable is the fact that keeping Oswalt in Cardinals red would have made the Albert Pujols contract situation that much more uncertain. And the Birds would be set up for a pitching meltdown after next season with Oswalt and Carpenter headed into their late thirties...