June 16: Twins @ Cardinals

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

Records: Cardinals (42-21, +6.0 in NL Central), Twins (34-29, -2.5 in AL Central)

First pitch: 12:45 pm CT

TV/Radio: Fox Sports Midwest, 1120 KMOX

Cardinals lineup: Kolten Wong (2B), Matt Carpenter (3B), Jhonny Peralta (SS), Mark Reynolds (1B), Yadier Molina (C), Jason Heyward (RF), Randal Grichuk (LF), Peter Bourjos (CF), Michael Wacha (RHP)

Twins lineup: Brian Dozier (2B), Torii Hunter (RF), Joe Mauer (1B), Trevor Plouffe (3B), Eduardo Nunez (SS), Kurt Suzuki (C), Shane Robinson (LF), Kyle Gibson (RHP), Byron Buxton (CF)

Transactions: None

Reading material:

  • According to the New York Times, the Cardinals are being investigated by the FBI for hacking the Astros (link)
  • Yadier Molina ends his home run drought after 354 days (link)
  • With Trevor Rosenthal unavailable due to tightness, Kevin Siegrist notched the save (link)
  • Cardinals sign 16 Draft picks, including both of their first-rounders (link)
  • Game recap from the Cardinals’ 3-2 win over the Twins (link)
  • Mike Matheny, Paul Molitor meet once again (link)
  • Cardinals, Royals makeup game scheduled for July 23 (link)
  • Preview of the Cardinals’ series finale against the Twins (link)
  • Double-A third baseman Patrick Wisdom posts a five-RBI day for Springfield (link)

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The game may take second place for awhile. It is a disastrous move if the hacking reports are true. Who could be so stupid?!? It will certainly take some of the luster off a great season. Very disappointing that they would stoop to something like this, if proven of course. We will be lucky if we are not penalized on draft pics etc.

After reading different articles….a best guess is that some low-level, tech-savvy Cardinal employees simply thought they’d mess with Luhnow, whom they suspected of taking proprietary Cardinals’ info with him in 2011, when Luhnow left the Cards to go work for the Astros.
Anonymously releasing some of Luhnow’s private trade-conversations relative to the Astros, may likely have seemed to be a harmless prank at the time. I can’t imagine that it’s anything more nefarious than that. It would explain why the Astros were hacked instead of some other team. At least that’s my 2-cents.

Wether its a low-level computer geek or someone higher up that gave the O.K., the team will be penaiized heavily reguardless.Jeeezzz the freakin’ FBI is in on it,so someone is going to jail. I find it hard to believe some low-level did it on his or her own.Why the Astros?Because Luhnow was a Cardinal higher up and very smart at evaluating talent and someone in Cardinal org. thought he took information with him.
Wacha threw very well today and Reynolds has been a big well needed surprise thus far.Hope the players can insulate themselves from this front office mess they’re just playing too well now.

Well, I have a real difficult time believing that anyone in upper or even middle-management would condone something like that. I’ve got to think that some saber-metrics office geek(s) got the big idea to try passwords they knew Luhnow USED to use when he was with the Cards….just to see if they could break into the Astros’ database. And then….only some goof-balls would try to get revenge by anonymously posting the stuff they found (as was reported)….without ultimately realizing what the repercussions might be.
As for the game today? Reynolds has scored the Cards’ winning run more than a coupla’ times. I was just telling a friend yesterday….that Reynolds doesn’t get all the accolades he truly deserves.
Wacha pitched great, yup. In a post-game interview…MM said, “The team isn’t involved in what’s going on with the hacking issue, so hopefully it won’t effect us.”

OK, here’s a question, Mr Dave, or anyone else? Hypothetically, if this (1) turns out to be some low-level goofy geek(s), who ran across some passwords Luhnow used to use….(2) decided to try them out on the Astros’ database, (3) then anonymously posted some of the Astros’ privileged trade info to embarrass Luhnow, knowing the bad blood between Luhnow & the Cards….and (4) did it without telling anybody else in the Cards organization? What should the punishment be…and directed toward whom?

I think MLB won’t care if there was an order from higher up or just some fools idea.They’ll simple say its the organizations responsiblity to govern their emplyees and will probably place a $$$$ and draft pick(s) fine on them.The Cards should fire the person or persons responsible and issue an apology ASAP. That’s what I do.
This is new territory for MLB and they better handle it better than the NFL handled their issues. Question for Jen,What have you heard?

Well, there WAS this legal-guy on the radio this morning, who’s versed in cyber crime. He said the charges will mostly hinge on what actual damage was done. He also thought the perpetrator wasn’t someone too sophisticated, considering they tried (unsuccessfully) to anonymously post the Astros’ data online for public viewing. His guess is it was some young front-office staffer(s)…and the ultimate charges could range from misdemeanor to felony, depending on what the finished FBI investigation turns up.
He added that if the hacker was doing it in secret, and there’s no proof that the Cards’ org had any knowledge of it? Legally, only the person(s) who “touched the PC keys”, would be charged.
An ESPN legal analyst, Lester Munson said this: “It’s certainly ethically questionable, but whether it is a crime is far less certain.”
And of course, you’re right about the apology. I have no doubt the Cards will eventually offer one up.

Well, to start the Cards have lost two in a row.But after taking two from the Twins earlier I look at it as a split of a 4 game series.2Ws at home 2Ls away. Hope Lyons is ready to start us on the right foot against Philly.
I too am hearing and seeing alot of talking heads about the charges against the Cards.I’m in the wait and see mode. I’m more concerned about Holiday out of the line up and adding some power at first base or left field for now.The Pirates are smoking right now and made up two games real fast. lets hope the weekend gives us the chance to add to the lead.

Me too. Holliday’s absence is a problem. Oh, and the local news just said they sent Harris (RHP) & Ed Easley (C) back down to AAA, and brought up Scruggs (1B) and Greg Garcia (2B). Scruggs has batted .478 in his last 6 games in Memphis. Garcia’s batted .346 in June so far. Clearly, they’re looking for offense.
And of course, it was a split series. Duh. Hahaha.
Geez, I’d love it if Lyons would kick butt. But I’m not sure he gotten into his “groove” yet. I suspect he’s still in the development stage. Or….his nerves are simply too difficult overcome?
Who knows if the Pirates can continue their spark. Maybe? This entire situation is very upsetting. Injuries plus hack-gate. : (

The one thing that helps me keep faith in Lyons, is that Shelby had pitching issues early-on (good stuff, then not-so-good)….and look how that turned out. : )

Woo-hoo…the Rally Squirrel! LOL! Hope that means we’re gonna’ crush the Phillies? ; )

I think this experience will be a positive for Lyons. With the huge lead, he has to be able to relax.

Winner, winner…chicken dinner!

Has anyone heard anything further on the investigation? I saw someone mention the employees might still be working in analytics for the Cards. But it was on one of those Lifefyre boards on the games and I couldn’t fin it again. I hope they don’t get hit with severe draft pick costs when the ownership and GM may not have known anything. A good win yesterday and hope they can keep this up this weekend.

As far as I’ve heard? The GM Mozeilak and owner DeWitt, both say they were completely unaware of anything going on until the FBI contacted them. But…during their own internal investigation, they believe they’ve whittled it down to a few specific office staffers who are the likely culprits. No further comments one way or the other, about any actions taken against them. They said they want to wait for the FBI’s final determination.

Nice two wins versus the Marlins.Been away on Martha’s Vineyard.This is the 40th aniver. of “JAWS” and they’ve been celebrating it with the re-release of the movie.Family jumped off the bridge made famous in the movie.We’ve done it before,but this time it had a celebratory significance.Going back a couple more times this summer,unfortunately one of the times will be when the President and his family are there………….talk about traffic issues.They close roads 15-20 mins before his motorcade of about a dozen black SUV’s go flying by. When the Clinton’s were out there it was only three or 4 SUV’s.Man how times have changed.
Things seem to be quiet on the hacking issue for now and I like the way the team has ignored the problem at least on the field.Heard rumor about Ryan Howard from the Phillies as a posibilty……..PLEASE NO! We don’t need him.Stay the course and look for another arm.Lynn’s start tonight will be interesting.If he gives us 5 strong then I’ll feel better,but if he really struggles then MO should up his intensity for that other arm.
Cubs series should be fun. Sorry about the long post,its been awhile.

Aha, a trip to Martha’s Vineyard, huh? I trust that a good time was had by all.

As for the hacking issue? Our STL Business Journal reported that 4 front office statisticians/analysts have recently hired lawyers. (Speculation is….that the office geeks are youngsters.)
And I’m with ya’ on possibly finding another arm. Lyons just doesn’t seem to have “it”. Yet, anyway. Heck, Jaime sure looked like he pulled a ham-string or sumpin’, in last nite’s game as he rounded 3rd base….and I dunno’ if the Cards could survive another pitcher injury. That was scary.
Then there’s Heyward, who appears to be on a roll. Being only 25? Perhaps he’s finally developing into the solid power bat everyone was hoping for?
Skruggs too, has shown some improvement lately.

Agree about Lynn. He will struggle sometimes. He’s not as consistent as say, Lackey or Waino. There’s something about the 4th inning, where Lynn can run into problems like bases loaded, no outs.

I also noticed that when we left for MV the Cards were 4 games up, now they’re 7.
The Cubs and Pirates have cooled off some lately so we’ve held off their run at us for now.They’ll do it again,hope we can match them again next time too. The series against the Cubs and Pirates prior to the All-Star break will be pivitable.
Anyone know why Jen hasn’t posted anything since June 16th? I didn’t see her on the Vineyard.

No…no idea where Jenifer’s been. I thought maybe she blocked me for some reason…and that’s why I haven’t seen any recent updates from her. Hahaha. As for the other teams? Like our loss to the Phillies…they’ve had bad luck too. Let’s hope we can sweep the “Fish” tonite….even with Peralta taking the day off. Kozma’s at SS, instead.

Swept the Fish and Lynn threw 6 innings.Not his best 6Ks 4Ws,but an excellent return in my book.No matter what the Pirates do they don’t gain any ground tonight.
Does Jen work for the Cards or MLB? Reason I ask is if she works for MLB they may have her reassigned or covering something else for now.Feels like ESPN…ignor the Cards and report on the Red Sox or some other team that’s out of it already.Anyway who cares; roll-St.Louis-roll.

Yep, even Lynn said he could’ve done better in his post-game interview. But a win is a win. Lyons optioned back to AAA, I just heard. Kinda’ figured that’d happen.
And Jenifer’s bio, up on the top right of this page….says the MLB assigned her to report on the Pirates for 5 years….then assigned her to the Cards, where she’s been for the past 4. So yeah, being in the employ of the MLB, they may just have assigned her to report on some other team for a while.
Kozma kicked butt tonite by the way, didn’t he? Way to go Pete! ; )

Kinda sad that the reporter isn’t a fan of the team they’re reporting on,but I guess they can’t be and be fair. Wish Jen herself would explain what’s going on.One would think that, that’s the least she could do,not just disappear for a month.
Holiday will be out longer than was first thought.I’d like the team to look into this kid from the Rockies,Cory Dickerson.Good power better than Holiday defensively and will hit for the same average,BUT is 25-26 years old.Colorado is going no where fast this year, so maybe Mo can make a match.I’d still like to see an arm first,but I haven’t seen anyone I like or we could afford yet.The Cardinal front office would know better than I, I presume.
When I first looked at the schedule I thought this stretch of games between the Cubs and Pirates would set the tone for the summer.I had no idea we’d be 8 games up going into the All-Star break.Speaking of 8 games.We’re 24 games over 500 and the Pirates are 8 games over 500,yet we only have an 8 game lead.Feels like it should be more,alot more!

Good point. Games ahead compared to winning pct DOES seem odd. Saber-metrics. Whatcha’ gonna’ do. Hahaha. Corey Dickerson has some good stats…but as you said, who knows what the Cards are thinking.
It’s really amazing how the Cards’ players continue step-up when needed, despite certain adversities. Almost movie-style. At 33, Peralta continues to get better & better. Jaime’s come-back as good as could be expected. If not better, frankly. Even Reynolds is holding his own. Wong’s doing great but still hasn’t probably hit his peak, neither defensively or offensively. It’s kinda’ like no active Cards’ player has run into an ongoing slump, like some others have. Yet, anyway….knock on wood. Cards still have 90 games left….so there’s plenty of time for things to change…or hopefully not. ; )

I just checked some reports, and Holliday’s progressing as expected for a #2 quad strain.
Initially, a local radio show had a specialist (MD) on, who said healing-time for something like that would likely take 4-6 weeks. But closer to 6 weeks would be a safer bet for a full & complete recovery. Then, with Grichuk producing as he has so far….there’s no immediate rush to get Holliday up & going again, anyway.

Glad they have kept playing so well despite the investigation. It is enjoyable to tune in everyday (though the father’s day game I watched with my son was the one weak spot).

Jennifer L. also appears to have disappeared from Twitter. Did she get in trouble for tweets around the hacking or something as those were the last ones I saw?

Surprise. Timing is everything. Jen just tweeted this 38 minutes ago: “Back on the beat after some vacation time. #STLCards, who lead the Majors with 48 wins, opens 9-game home stand tonight.”
So…she’s back in the saddle again! ; )

Plus, I’m pretty sure that the Cards’ front office has assured the team that the investigation has absolutely zero to do with them, as players. No amount of “inside info” can really help or hinder a player’s BA or a pitcher pounding the zone. ; )

The least Jen could have done was give a heads up on that vacation thing…..if that was what it really was? Plus, you work for MLB and you vacation during the season;
wise very wise! Its like being a teacher and taking a vacation during exams.
Need a good one out of Lackey tonight to get us off on the right foot.

Lackey says he’s more comfortable at home….so hopefully, he’ll give us a good game. Arrieta might be tough to hit. He’s 1-1 vs the Cards. There’s still the expectation out there that the Cubbies can be a wildcard contender before the season’s end…so they’ll be playing hard.
Difficult to say whether it was Jenifer’s choice to vacay, or if the MLB assigned the time-slot to her. Maybe we reserve judgement ’til we know the situation?

Of course she only “disappeared” from Twitter because I spelled here first name wrong! Will be good to have her regular insightful comments back. This weekend could be an important test against the Cubs.

Ha, well at least it’s probably nice for Jen to know we were a bit miffed with her, ’cause we missed her insight…as I did too. Jenifer’s pretty smart about baseball. ; )
And yessir….this home-stand, including the White Sox & Padres, will determine our standing coming up on the half-way mark. Fingers crossed….

If the season ended today,we’d play either the Cubs or the Pirates.Imagine the NL Central is pretty tough.Two years ago we were laughed at,especially by the AL East crowd.Less than 90 wins will probably win that division.Cubs have Rizzo hitting 2nd.
Does anyone know if that’s standard proceedure from them?

Here’s an excerpt from an article back in March:
Rizzo has mostly been a No. 3 hitter for the Cubs but could find himself hitting No. 2 if/when Maddon decides to bat the pitcher No. 8.
“I liked Jimmy Edmonds batting #2 [for example],” Maddon said when Edmonds was an Angel. “I liked when we put him in the two hole. When you get a better hitter like that in the lineup, you want someone at the bottom to feed him.”

What’s with the base running this year? They lose so many runners on the basepaths. Bizarre. At least a few losses just from that alone.

Could not agree more! Just told my buddy a week or so ago, that taking an aggressive approach, as MM’s supposedly encouraged the players to do lately, like the last month or so? Does NOT mean to recklessly push the stealing option at every, single opportunity. It needs to be balanced with the pros & cons, depending on the score vs the risk. Ugh. Kinda’ makes me wonder how goof-ball posters like us can figure this out, but not them?

Amazing that those spammers can find us anywhere online. Bizarre.

Yup. Look who posted the ad. No name….just “google.com”. Idiots.

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