Archive for November 21st, 2011

The Captain Is Ready To Call It A Season

After blogging far too much about the Cardinals this year, I’m finally reaching the end.  As I mentioned on Thursday, I picked up tickets for the premier screening of the 2011 World Series film tomorrow nite at the new Peabody Opera House.  I’m sure I’ll recap the event later in the week, which should be a final goodbye to the Comeback Cardinals of 2011.  But before I say ciaoI wanted to mention a few more thoughts on the Redbirds.

First up, I’m going to miss the hell out of manager Tony LaRussa now that he has retired.  I’m glad he got to go out on top, but I wish he would stay just a few years longer.  I’ve been a fan of Tony since he arrived in St. Louis sixteen seasons ago.  LaRussa took a lot of crap from the media and fans about the perceived sense that he “over-manages” his teams.  While it’s true that I didn’t always agree with his decisions, I thought it was ridiculous how many folks thought they would do a better job than Tony.  As the results show, the guy knew what he was doing.  So thanks to Tony for some of the best baseball of my life.   You will be missed.

As far as Tony’s replacement, former Cardinals catcher Mike Matheny, I’m not sure how to feel.  I always liked Mike when he played with the Redbirds, but I’m not sure about the wisdom of handing a team built to win now over to a man who has never coached before.  I think Matheny is capable, and I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, but he’s facing a steep learning curve.  But if he has the support of the rest of the coaching staff, which it appears he does, then I’m willing to give him a shot too.

The other big story in the Cardinals offseason is of course free agent Albert Pujols.  I’ve said for quite a while that I think Albert resigning with the Cardinals and eventually retiring in St. Louis would be a good thing for everyone.  But I’m starting to rethink this based on the contract numbers that are getting thrown around in the media.  Paying Albert $25 million a season for the next 8-10 years will not leave much money for the rest of the team.  As a Cardinal fan who plans on watching the team for the next several decades, I’m worried that the contract Albert would sign with the Cardinals would have a hugely negative effect on the 2016-2020 teams.  I know that is a long way off, but I want to avoid a repeat of the mediocre Cardinals teams from the 1990s.

And speaking of future baseball, I had a random thought a couple of weeks back that I wanted to mention.  In 2011 I won my first full season of Fantasy Baseball and my hometown team won the World Series, both with huge come from behind wins.  As a baseball fan is very unlikely that I will experience this amount of victory again; maybe I should quit while I’m ahead?  While this is extremely unlikely to happen, it was still an interesting thought.  Will I compare every year from now on to 2011 and think it wasn’t as good?  Let’s hope not!


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