posted on August 13, 2010 05:30
Sometimes the storylines are too good to believe. Think about what you would have said if I told you that this 2010 Cardinals team was basically going to be in a season long malaise, battling with the Reds for first place in the beginning of August and the only thing that would wake them up is being called a bunch of bitches by Brandon Phillips, who by many people’s estimation, is himself a bitch.
You wouldn’t have believed a second of that shit.
But that’s exactly what happened. And now the Cardinals head into the first home series with the Cubs with a serious chip on their shoulder and a 3 game winning streak where they’ve absolutely sacked up and demolished their opponent.
I was on the a radio show the other night, after a few beers, and I was working myself into a good lather, when it hit me- Tony LaRussa might be the one to blame (if we can actually use that term here) for the Cardinals lethargy.
I love TLR. I think he gets a bad rap from all sorts of people for reasons I can’t understand. And I’m pretty sure that when he finally moves on from the Cardinals, we’re going to appreciate him more. But the 2010 team didn’t do the guy any favors by snapping out of their funk so quick once BP challenged their manhood.
Think about it. The #1 complaint about the Cardinals and their inability to separate from the NL Central has been ‘hazy’ play. They’ll score 14 runs one night and then turn around and get doubled off twice and get like 3 hits and 0 runs the next game. They’ve obviously got a ton of talent, but they haven’t brought the heat every single night.
So that’s kind of on the coach, right?
Well, maybe. Unless you can’t motivate a group of guys at all. And that happens. Sometimes just a whole assholish-ness glazes over a professional team and nobody is getting through to them. In those cases, you’ve got to chalk it up to picking the wrong guys to get paid and move on.
Since Brandon Phillips did motivate the Cardinals, we see that these guys CAN, in fact, get fired up to play. If you push the right buttons. So I can only put 1 and 1 together and ask what TLR was doing and why none of it hit home like Phillips ‘bitch’ comments. Was he being too soft? Relying on his players to be self-starters? Has his message just gotten old for some of the guys?
Now for fuck’s sake, we are talking about a team 15 games over .500 and most likely headed to the playoffs, so it’s not like LaRussa is doing this team a terrible disservice. But I think it is interesting to note that maybe he isn’t getting the attention of his team the way he used to.
Maybe he gets some of it back with his 2 game suspension. Maybe he retires after this season. Lots of maybes are floating out there.
Just a thought. And if nothing else, it’ll give the message board trolls that hate LaRussa something to bitch about.
Then again, they probably were way ahead of the rest of us on this anyway.
@athooks is on Twitter on CardsDiaspora.com and on SB Nation STL