Happy Thursday everyone. Let us now compare the current Cardinals regime to the previous 16 year Cardinals cabinet.

Mike Matheny has
officially named Jason Motte the closer!  Sound the alarms!

Thank you. Here are two interesting pieces from the AP story linked above (Associated Press, not Albert Pujols). First, from the Skipper:

"There aren't any semantics. It's just being honest. How do I see this bullpen? I see that there is a guy who did a great job in the ninth inning last year and there's no reason not to go into this season thinking the same thing. … I think of it (as) just letting somebody know that you have confidence in them. Jason deserved that."

Wow, honesty! What a tremendous idea for Cardinals leadership. On the flipside, here's a give and take between Tony La Russa and Jason Motte last October, which is documented in the same AP story ...

Once the righthander had wiggled free of the celebration that followed the final out of World Series Game 7, he found La Russa near the dugout.

"You're my closer," the manager announced.

"You're only saying that because we don't have any more games," Motte replied.

"You're smarter than you look," La Russa said as he winked.

Smarter than you look? Geez. Thanks for the nod of approval, coach! 

The honest approach and lack of head games from Matheny to his players is all well and good but it will mean nothing if the Cardinals don't win in 2012. Regardless, it's nice to be able to trust the words coming from the Cards brass compared to the previous 4 terms in office. This contrast in managerial styles will save Cardinals fans from frequent bouts of unnecessary anxiety, stress and tension. No longer will we have to bang our head against the wall when listening to managerial spin.

PS: good reading on the state of Yadier Molina at this point in his career courtesy
of Uncle Bernie

Roughly 20 billboards throughout southern California depict Pujols as "El Hombre". From the
Los Angeles Times of L.A.: 

"I haven't made that decision, so I haven't talked to them about it," Pujols said, "but I prefer they not use that."

The Angels did not consult with Pujols or his agent before launching the campaign, but Tim Mead, vice president of communications, and Robert Alvarado, vice president of marketing and ticket sales, said the team does not normally seek approval from players about how they will be portrayed in ads.

"I haven't experienced any resistance from players in the past about things like this," Alvarado said. "It's all complimentary."

Mead added that "El Hombre" has a different meaning to fans in Southern California than it does in St. Louis.

"His sentiments in St. Louis were out of respect and deference to someone else," Mead said. "He was saying, 'I'm not The Man, Stan Musial is.' We're marketing Albert Pujols, Angels baseball. I think there's a tremendous difference in context."

It must be great for high profile athletes who work their butts off year round to be portrayed however the marketing team wants them to be portrayed. I don't know the details of how it works with the Cardinals creative and marketing teams, but I have a hard time believing they would put their players in similar positions of uncomfortable-ness. 

Speaking of the Angels, they've
signed Jason Isringhausen to a minor league deal. Dave Veres is expected to sign shortly.

It's okay to have a little doubt, it happens. The Bruins
doubled up the Blues last night, ending their 10 game home-point streak . And now it's off to Nashville, where the Predators are striving for 10 game home-point streak of their own. They have also owned the Blues this season. The next month of road games will say a lot about our Blues. 

Our friends at Cold Hard Football Facts have a piece dedicated football futility titled
"St. Louis' terrible, horrible no good, very bad Rams". Worth a read if you like to measure futility from a historical context.

Albert Pujols, Jeremy Lin and Kurt Warner.

St. Louis brother Mike Ambersley has signed a 3 year deal to keep playing in Tampa Bay. 

"Yes, I'd like some bread, a glass of wine and ashes on my forehead.
And can you supersize that, please?"

Tweet @patrickimig.

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