I’m a Cardinals fan specifically, and a baseball fan in general. Since Arch City is a St. Louis-centric blog, we’ll focus on the Cards fan in me. The Cards fan in me is hurting. Well, the short term fan is. The long view fan in me has some questions about what to do next, but we’ll keep him under wraps for the moment.
I’m sure the question of why Mike used Michael Wacha on a million days rest in the bottom of the ninth inning in a tie game has been asked over and over, so I won’t ask it here.
My question is about the move everybody expected Mike Matheny to make: Pat Neshek in the eigth inning.
Via Baseball Reference, I found out, that after an awesome first four months, things started going south for Neshek in August before the wheels fell off in September/October:
Add in the fact that Michael Morse hit righties better than lefties this year (.293 vs. RHP, .248 vs. LHP) and you have an ominous set of conditions.
Now, I accessed this data relatively quickly. In today’s day and age, you’d think teams would have data like this readily available at all times, whether it’s printed out or they have an IT guy travelling along, stationed either in the dugout or in the locker room, just waiting to be utilized.
Mike probably gave his standard answer when asked about Neshek, which was probably something like “He’s our eighth inning guy” bull****. That, in my mind, is the worst thing he could possibly say. In this situation, given this data, Neshek should *not* have been your eight inning guy.
If Mike Matheny can’t learn to be more flexible, to use the data available to him, he should be fired, no matter how many playoffs he makes, as he won’t win the world series without being extremely lucky.
As always, thanks for reading.