If St. Louis general manager John Mozeliak is trying to act casual about the Cardinals need for hitting help, it’s probably not going very well.
The Cardinals not only were completely shut down by the lowly Cincinnati Reds Tuesday night. They are one exquisitely timed Kolten Wong home run away from potentially losing the first two games of a home series they certainly should win.
The Redbirds looked like they had Cincinnati starter Mike Leake zeroed in during the first inning Tuesday. St. Louis hitters smoked a pair of balls right at fielders and it seemed like a matter of time before hard hits would start to find holes.
Instead, the bats went to sleep and St. Louis hitters never really threatened after newly-activated hurler Jaime Garcia made one bad pitch in the sixth inning and Joey Votto hit it over the centerfield wall for a three-run homer.
For the third game in a row, St. Louis used a makeshift lineup. Randal Grichuk, suffering from a groin injury, and Jason Heyward didn’t start with rookie Stephen Piscotty and offensively-challenged centerfielder Peter Bourjos in their respective places.
But being forced to employ bench players is no excuse. The starters didn’t do the job, either.
Matt Carpenter was hitness in four at-bats to fall to .252 for the season. Matt Holliday was 0-for-4 as were Jhonny Peralta and Yadier Molina. While Bourjos spent the evening grounding out to different infielders, Piscotty actually tallied one of only four St. Louis hits.
While the incumbent Cardinals certainly need to hit better, it’s obvious the team could use another weapon. Specifically a guy like Milwaukee’s Adam Lind who could assume the clean-up spot in the batting order and play first base, an obvious need since Matt Adams went down for the season with an injury early in the year.
The only question, at this point, is if the price for a new bat will be something the Redbirds can afford to pay.