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United Cardinal Bloggers roundtable: What grade for Matheny and how can he improve?

John Mozeliak notes that the Cardinals “still think we have some holes.” One is right field, stomach and Carlos Beltran would fill it well.

Despite currently polling at Fungoes as the Cardinals

5 Responses to “United Cardinal Bloggers roundtable: What grade for Matheny and how can he improve?”

  1. cardinalnation257 Says:

    Can’t believe someone could have the thought of giving Matheny a C. I absolutely loved his demeanor, especially with the media. It was very LaRussa like, but I think we can expect to see him come out of his shell a little more next year. Only complaint I can give is why he ever took Beltran out of the 2 spot in the lineup. Beltran openly expressed his liking for the 2 spot and how could you keep him out of that spot with the numbers he was putting up in the first half! When he was put into the cleanup and later spots he clearly struggled. As a tremendous defensive player in his own rite, I would also like to see him put an emphasis on defense for this next year as it was the one thing consistently lacking from this team (with the exception of Yadi). Overall a great rookie performance from Mike Matheny, enough for an A- in my book. He has given reason for excitement for this Cardinal team, and for that I cannot thank him enough.

  2. Ziggy Says:

    I give Matheny a solid A.

    Following the Cards online from a distance on a daily basis (I live in Chicago) and taking in a lot of televised Sox games this year, I had the opportunity to compare and contrast Matheny with Robin Ventura’s maiden voyage as manager.

    Throughout the early part of the season and into the summer, I thought Matheny was trying to out La Russa La Russa with all the lineup juggling and relief pitching strategizing. Meantime, Ventura was putting the same lineup in the field day and after day, and successfully challenging the Tigers, the heavy pre-season favorites.

    What I didn’t get was that Matheny was trying to preserve a lineup of creaky veterans (Beltran, Furcal, Holliday) that included oft injured younger players (Craig, Freese). Despite these efforts, all of the Cards big bats missed significant time due to injury – most missed at least a week and many missed for than two weeks. Otherwise we might be looking at a 100 win team this year.

    What Matheny and the team surely realized (and I of course did not) is that if they could keep the ship stitched together through August, they could bottom feed on a diet rich in Astros and Cubs the last couple of weeks to make a final stretch drive run for a playoff spot. Which they did. The White Sox, meantime, flamed out the last two weeks of the season as their big bats went silent.

    One can argue about Matheny’s game tactics, but his overall understanding of strategy based on the hand he was dealt got a team with very fragile health to within one game of the World Series.

    The team rode the high of the NLDS to a 3-1 lead over a very talented and well managed Giants team. The same crafty pitching, defense and timely hitting (and great coaching) that ultimately did in the Cards in seven games took care of the Tigers in four.

    Matheny helped keep his team bouncing back from gut wrenching, devastating losses all year. He got them into a position where they could extend the season. I can’t imagine who could have taken them further this year after all of the signature losses (Pujols, La Russa, Duncan, Carpenter) from the previous year. He had a truly amazing year, as did his team.

  3. United Cardinal Bloggers Roundtable - Cardinals GM | Cardinals GM Says:

    […] Tuesday, October 30: Kevin, Cards ‘N Stuff  Wednesday, October 31: Christine, Tara, Miranda, Aaron Miles’ Fastball Thursday, November 1: Rodney, Ryan, Saint Louis Sports Friday, November 2:  Pip, Fungoes […]

  4. United Cardinal Bloggers Roundtable Continues..... - Cardinals GM | Cardinals GM Says:

    […] Tuesday, October 30: Kevin, Cards ‘N Stuff  Wednesday, October 31: Christine, Tara, Miranda, Aaron Miles’ Fastball Thursday, November 1: Rodney, Ryan, Saint Louis Sports Friday, November 2:  Pip, Fungoes […]

  5. Cardinal Bloggers Roundtable Continues - Cardinals GM | Cardinals GM Says:

    […] Tuesday, October 30: Kevin, Cards ‘N Stuff  Wednesday, October 31: Christine, Tara, Miranda, Aaron Miles’ Fastball Thursday, November 1: Rodney, Ryan, Saint Louis Sports Friday, November 2:  Pip, Fungoes […]

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