It’s been 179 days since the Cardinals played a regular season game.
That’s almost 1/2 a year since you’ve truly cared about a baseball game.
I think we can all agree that this whole not making the playoffs phase isn’t making the winter any shorter.
But it’s over.
Baseball has returned.
Because you’re spending your morning reading anything and everything to do with the Cardinals before taking an extra long lunch, here’s a clickbait-ish post housing 5 predictions for the Cardinals upcoming 2018 season.
Feel free to remind me when these are spectacularly dated two weeks from now.
1. CARLOS MARTINEZ TAKES ALL THE HATERS AND TUCKS THEM IN
The Cardinals have had 2 Cy Young winners in franchise history:
- Bob Gibson (1968 & 1970)
- Chris Carpenter (2005)
After 2018, they’ll have 3 when Carlos Martinez dominates the next 6 months.
Dude is tired of your ‘lots of talent but needs to put it all together’. He’s sick of your ‘he’s not a true #1 starter’. He’s over your ‘worry less about the hair and more about getting outs’.
He’s going to RAWK this season.
2. PAUL DEJONG EARNS MO A CONTRACT EXTENSION
Mo’s lost a little luster the past couple years.
When Theo orchestrated a hostile takeover of the NL Central and built a Cubs team that finally was able to break the curse of the billy goat, Mo’s decade of sustained excellence (and accolades) turned into ‘what have you done for me lately, bruh’ real quick.
Next off-season, Manny Machado will be signing a contract north of 200 million. Probably closer to 300 million. Maybe even 400 million.
Meanwhile the Cardinals are set at SS for the next half-decade with Paulie DeJong and his slash line of .285/.325/.532-ish with 25 home runs-ish for about 1/7th of the cost.
These are the kind of contracts that earn presidents of MLB teams VERY lucrative contract extensions themselves.
The MOjo is back.
3. MIKE MADDUX IS GOING TO BE A NEW LEGEND
I don’t expect Maddux v Duncan think pieces.
I demand Maddux v Duncan think pieces.
There is no fanbase that celebrates the pitching coach quite like Cardinals fans. And it’s going to take about five Jordan Hicks strikeouts before columnists start sniffing around the idea of a beefy Maddux profile.
By July, you’ll know how he likes his eggs.
By September, he’ll be getting 23andme requests from otherwise reasonable people to see if they’re any relation.
4. ALL THINGS END BADLY OR THEY WOULDN’T END
Adam Wainwright is going to down as one of the most popular Cardinals of the 00’s. A first-ballot red jacket honoree.
Zero people (and I truly think the number is actually 0) aren’t rooting for Wain-O to kick ass in his final season with the team.
Adam Wainwright is starting the season on the DL.
The Cardinals have a plethora of young pitchers that are sniffing around a rotation spot.
And, most damningly, Wain-O just hasn’t been much better than an average pitcher the past 2 seasons.
- 2013-14: 12.3 WAR
- 2015: Injured (only 28 innings pitched)
- 2016-17: 1.2 WAR
This is going to be a long season for #50.
I want to reiterate… I hope I’m wrong.
I hope Wainwright comes off the DL and has a renaissance year and is cutting off curveballs like someone 20 minutes late for work and merging onto 270.
If not, we’ll always have this:
5. START SAVING FOR OCTOBER NOW
October used to be the most expensive month in St. Louis.
Start saving your dollars now.
The Cardinals will be back in the playoffs.
You’ve been warned.
Enjoy the start of baseball season, everybody!
Photo: Sports Logos