Cardinals miss playoffs for third year in a row

Changes in leadership, hopes of new transactions make fans optimistic toward next year.


Photo by Keith Allison

Former manager Mike Matheny argues with an umpire. He was fired in July.

“Another home run by Matt Carpenter! That puts them back into first place for the wildcard! What a fantastic stretch of baseball by Matt Carpenter and the Cardinals!” Dan McLaughlin says.

It’s gotta be the salsa. That is a phrase you have probably heard ever since Matt Carpenter, and the Cardinals, went on a winning spree in the second half to put them in the playoff hunt.
After playing .500 ball for most of the season, the Cardinals went on a 22-6 run in the month of August. Led by new manager Mike Shildt, the Cardinals elevated to a whole new level during the second half of the year, and gave the impression that they were going to be a team to be feared come October.

“We looked great for a stretch there. We were firing on all cylinders, and I thought the Cards would make it back to the playoffs this year,” sophomore Dane Keller said.

On July 14, the Cardinals were 47-46, and the playoffs were not looking likely.

“Before we fired Matheny, I thought we had no shot,” sophomore superfan Mason Lange said.

After two home losses to the Reds, the Cards front office had enough.

“Firing Matheny was a great move. Had we fired him earlier, we might have been able to win a couple more games, potentially putting us in the playoffs,” Keller said.

New head coach Mike Shildt quickly won the approval of fans everywhere, leading the Cardinals to a great stretch of baseball for the start of the second half.

“I’m optimistic about Shildt, he has definitely earned the job at manager,” speech teacher Michael Hachmeister said.

However, a 12-14 month of September left the Cardinals narrowly out of the playoffs. After all that, the Cards had missed the playoffs yet again. Had a couple of key moments gone better, some think the Cards could have made the playoffs.

“When Adonis Garcia fell rounding third base, I knew our season was over. It was just not meant to be, had we done some things different, maybe we’d still be playing baseball right now. I’m just disappointed in some key guys, especially Dexter Fowler,” Keller said.

While many Cards fans left the season feeling disappointed, there are definitely some positive takeaways that leave fans even more excited for next year.

“I’m excited to see how Harrison Bader plays next year. He opened some eyes this season, and he has all the tools to be a star for us in the coming year,” Hachmeister said.
“I’m excited to see Dexter Fowler have a bounce back campaign. Now that his head is right, I can see at least .280 with 25 home runs next season,” an optimistic Mason Lange said.

Though we missed the playoffs yet again, Cards fans seem confident that we will be right in the playoff hunt next year.

“Call me crazy, but with new management, some bounce back seasons, and some salsa, I predict the Cardinals will win the 2019 World Series,” Lange said.