MLB

Liberal Sports Media and Gay Activists Blast St. Louis Cardinals for Inviting Lance Berkman to ‘Christian Day’ at Busch Stadium

The St. Louis Cardinals have found themselves in the crosshairs of the LGBT community for inviting former Cardinal Lance Berkman to the team’s annual Christian Day event. Berkman’s presence sparks controversy amongst the gay community because of his role in the fight against the transgender bathroom ordinance, aka the “Equal Rights Ordinance,” in Houston in 2015. Pride Center of St. Louis issued this highly critical statement of the Cardinals decision to invite Berkman: “Pride St. Louis is disappointed by the decision of the St. Louis Cardinals to provide a public platform for Berkman, an individual whose words and actions towards the LGBTQ+ are divisive and demeaning.” The group initially released the statement to Outsports, an SB Nation website which prioritizes news involving the LGBT community and sports. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “On its own, Outsports has called Berkman a “bigot” and “an outspoken opponent of the LGBT community” who was “one of the faces of the campaign against Houston’s equal-rights ordinance” in 2015.” Despite the backlash, as of this writing, the Cardinals remain committed to having Berkman attend “Christian Day.” The team issued their own statement in response to those troubled by the move: “The Cardinals have hosted a Christian Day at the ballpark for nearly three decades. Lance Berkman participated in Christian Day when he was a Cardinals player, and we welcome him back this year to discuss his faith.”

Outstanding!!  Kudos to the front office of the St. Louis Cardinals for standing firm against the brazenly hypocritical bullying tactics of the gay mafia.  They want the right, and support, to have their gay days, and “pride” parades and so on…without ANY opposition whatsoever.  And yet, they don’t want the other aside (i.e. Christians) afforded the same freedom to express THEIR views and hold THEIR events.  The gay mafia are a bunch of self-righteous, self-serving, hypocritical, fascist, pc-police and speech Nazis.

Holliday homers in probable farewell with St. Louis Cardinals

After weeks of trying and trying and trying to get his fractured thumb healthy enough to be in the lineup, Matt Holliday rejoined the active roster Friday so the Cardinals could do something bigger than using him in a key at-bat or sending him out for a start. They wanted to say goodbye. With one swing, he handled the rest. In what could be his final at-bat as a Cardinal, Holliday came off the disabled list and into the batter’s box Friday against Pittsburgh, and hit a home run out to the right-field bullpen. Holliday’s 156th career homer for the Cardinals — his first ever as a pinch-hitter — punctuated a 7½-year tenure with the team, one that included an unprecedented run of success for the franchise. Having told him this week that they would not exercise his option for the 2017 season, the Cardinals wanted to give the home crowd a chance to acknowledge its All-Star and longtime No. 3 hitter. He earned a victory lap. “Still have chills,” manager Mike Matheny said after a 7-0 victory. Matheny and general manager John Mozeliak agreed to activate Holliday for the final series of the regular season and, if the opportunity presented itself, get him an at-bat. Holliday did not want an at-bat with a game or playoff berth on the line. A ceremonial one would be tough enough. The Cardinals didn’t want him to see him leave without an ovation. It started in the dugout. The applause spread from his teammates out through the crowd and onto the scoreboard that read, “Thank You Matt Holliday.” On an 0-2 pitch from Pittsburgh lefty Zach Phillips, Holliday hit his 20th home run of the season, landing with the relievers, for safekeeping. Kolten Wong pushed Adam Wainwright out onto the field with Yadier Molina to share a hug with the three players who have shared championships and five consecutive postseason berths. Holliday received a curtain call, averting his weeping eyes even as he raised his helmet. “Not much better way to go out than that,” Wainwright said. People who saw him described Holliday as “too emotional” to comment before or after the game. He conveyed some thoughts in a statement: “While I’m disappointed this could be it here in St. Louis, I understand that it might be time to move on.” “This guy has been a pillar in this organization for a good amount of time,” Matheny said. “Not knowing how things play out over the winter (we’re) trying to give him the respect that he deserves. Tough conversation for him. A tough conversation for all of us. But to try to make sure you don’t have any regret.” Holliday, 36, approached Mozeliak earlier this week to gain clarity on his future with the club. The former batting champ wanted to know as the final home stand came toward an end, if he should have his family present, if he should be planning some farewells. In eight years with the Cardinals, Holliday came to call St. Louis his home, spending several offseasons in the area. He developed a close relationship with several charities and was a regular visitor at Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital. At least once he delivered a home run ball to a patient there — on his way home from the game in which he hit it. The Cardinals hold a $17 million option for 2017, though Mozeliak said the probability of picking it up is “low.” As far back as spring training, Holliday understood that possibility and expressed a hope to discuss a lower-cost extension that would allow him to finish his career with the Cardinals. A hoped-for conversation in August was derailed by a fastball — in and hard to Holliday’s right hand. On Aug. 11, Cubs pitcher Mike Montgomery fractured Holliday’s right thumb with a pitch. Holliday elected to have surgery on the thumb to accelerate his recovery by providing stability. He could not hasten the healing of the bone and after each attempt to return his finger would swell up to a point he could not hit. The injury made the Cardinals’ decision for them. “It stinks,” Mozeliak said. “The unfortunate part of baseball or sports is injuries. But when you sit in my seat it cannot solely be relationship-driven. I have to think about this long term and what we think is best for this organization and how we think we can be stronger and how we can get stronger. So it’s unfortunate nothing lasts forever, especially in sports.” Mozeliak made Holliday his first major trade, pursuing talks first with Colorado and then successfully in July 2009 with Oakland. A free agent at the end of the 2009 season, Holliday signed a seven-year, $120 million deal that remains the largest in Cardinals history. During the span of the contract, only 16 hitters, six of them MVPs, had a higher OPS than Holliday’s .862. Holliday’s career OPS of .872 with the Cardinals ranked 10th in club history, as did his .493 slugging percentage and 156 homers. “Matt meant much more than statistics to the St. Louis Cardinals,” his agent Scott Boras said Friday. “Sometimes it’s difficult to imagine a clubhouse without a player and you realize it when you don’t have that player.” The Cardinals expect to generate some churn on the roster this offseason, and that could mean reshaping the middle of the lineup, the outfield, or both. Holliday will probably look to the American League, where there will be an opportunity to be a designated hitter. He has also shown he can play first base. That position could prompt the Cardinals and Holliday to engage in future discussions about a deal that would reflect a different, even part-time role on the team. Matheny stressed that they wanted to make sure the team gave him a fitting farewell, but not necessarily finality. “I wouldn’t say the future is set,” he said. “Doors are open. The way things are going I think it goes back to how do we not miss an opportunity, an opportunity to let our fans show the admiration they have for a great player and for us as an organization to tip our cap as well? Not saying that destines a decision any one direction, but just to make sure we at least do our very best to try and do what’s right.” If Friday was his last swing, it went where he took the team. A long way.

Indeed!  What a touching story about a real class act.  Thanks to Derrick Goold over at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch for bringing us that piece.  It’s so great that the Cardinal front office is keeping “doors open” about the future.  So, ya never know..  But, for now..this was a fitting tribute.  To see Matt’s (probable) final at bat with the Red Birds, and his curtain call, click on the text above.  Thanks for the great memories, Matt.  Hope you’ll continue to call the great city of St. Louis home.  GO CARDINALS!!!    🙂

Dodgers honor retiring broadcaster Vin Scully after 67 years in the booth

Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully thanked Los Angeles Dodgers fans for making him feel like an 8-year-old again every time they cheer. The crowd, in turn, saluted Scully with a loud roar and multiple standing ovations on his appreciation night Friday. Holding hands with wife Sandi, he walked slowly from the dugout along a blue carpet dotted with the team’s logo to a stage set up in front of home plate for the pre-game ceremony honoring his 67 years in the team’s broadcast booth. Smiling, laughing and waving to the crowd, Scully placed his left hand over his heart in a sign of gratitude. As the applause and cheers continued, he shook his head and mouthed “OK” to let the crowd know it could quiet down. They ignored him. “Hi everybody and a very pleasant good evening to you,” Scully said, his signature greeting drawing the first of several roars. “I thought I’d get that out of the way right away.” The first 50,000 fans in attendance before the Dodgers’ 5-2 win over Colorado received a typed letter signed by Scully containing recollections from his 67-year career that began in Brooklyn with the Dodgers and continued when the team moved west for the 1958 season. “You were simply always there for me,” Scully wrote. “I have always felt that I needed you more than you needed me and that holds true to this very day. I have been privileged to share in your passion and love for this great game.” In his remarks, Scully thanked the fans for “your enthusiasm, your passion for the game.” “When you roar, when you cheer, when you are thrilled for a brief moment I’m 8 years old again,” he said. “You have allowed me to be young at heart. I owe you everything.” Actor Kevin Costner, baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax and Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw were among the speakers paying tribute to the 88-year-old Scully, who is retiring next weekend after Los Angeles concludes its regular season in San Francisco. “Obviously he is a Dodger at heart, but he called a lot of really important games and people regard him to be one of those rare treasures that are always going to be a part of baseball,” Manfred said before the ceremony. Scully showed his sense of humor when explaining that he is often asked about his future. He turns 89 in November. “I’m going to try to live,” he said, drawing laughs. “I’m looking for a much smaller house and a much larger medicine cabinet.” Noting his five children, 16 grandchildren and three great grandchildren, Scully said, “I guarantee you if I don’t know what to do they will find something for me to do.”

I bet they will, Vin!  All the best to you in your well-deserved retirement!   🙂

St. Louis Cardinals Shut Out Archrival Cubs in Game 1 of NLDS

Facing their archrivals from Chicago for the first time in postseason history, the Cardinals, behind the experienced postseason arm of John Lackey and a late rookie power surge, nabbed a 4-0 win over the Cubs at Busch Stadium on Friday to open their best-of-five National League Division Series. Lackey outdueled good friend Jon Lester to boost the Cardinals to an early series lead that has proven pivotal in DS play. Of the 40 teams to win the first game of the NLDS, 36 have gone on to advance to the NL Championship Series. The Cubs will have a chance to even the series on Saturday, when the two teams meet in Game 2 at 4:37 p.m. CT/5:37 ET on TBS. “You know, you put a guy in a situation like this, and we talk a lot about him being a big-game pitcher, about the experience he’s had, how he thrives in these situations, and then he just takes it there and goes a step further with just the way he competed today,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of his Game 1 starter. “It was exactly what we needed, and I don’t know if you could ask him to do any more than what he did.” The Cardinals are 8-0 in the NLDS when winning Game 1, while the Cubs have lost all 11 postseason series they’ve had in which they dropped the first game. “I hate [saying] ‘must win,’ because I think they’re all must win, especially this late in the year,” Chris Coghlan said of the Cubs’ status in the series. “If we can win one out of two here the whole time, I think that’s a victory. [Saturday], if we come out and do our thing, I feel if we execute and play our game, we’ll come out on top.” Making the 19th postseason start of his career, Lackey kept the Cubs hitless through five innings and allowed only three baserunners over 7 1/3, matching the longest start of his postseason career. Lackey erased two on double plays and stranded another at third when Dexter Fowler flied out to the wall in right to close the sixth. Lester, teammates with Lackey on the 2013 World Series-winning Red Sox, was stung by back-to-back hits by the Cards in the first. Stephen Piscotty, in his first postseason at-bat, dropped a ground-rule double into the right-field corner and then scored on Matt Holliday’s single up the middle.

As of this typing, the Cubbies are up 6-3 in Game 2 in St. Louis.  Game 3 goes to Chicago.  So, it’s just getting started..   GO CARDINALS!!!!     🙂

St. Louis Cardinals rally to beat Brewers 7-3; magic number to 6

In a three-pitch span at Busch Stadium on Thursday night, the Cardinals used back-to-back blasts from Jhonny Peralta and Stephen Piscotty to flip a three-run deficit into a one-run lead and spark a 7-3 victory over the Brewers. The win also helped the Cards maintain their four-game National League Central lead over the pursuing Pirates, who won their sixth straight game earlier in the day. St. Louis, riding a five-game winning streak of its own, has a magic number of six to capture its third straight division title. “This team has been very good, I think, in getting right back into a game,” said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny, whose team is now 41 games above .500. “But the offense is stepping up. You look at [Wednesday’s 10-run output] and you look at tonight. The long ball is nice to have, and I know it’s in our arsenal.” The Cardinals scored six unanswered times off Brewers starter Taylor Jungmann, who had been staked to a three-run, first-inning lead. That evaporated rapidly in the fourth. After a leadoff walk and a single, Jungmann served up a game-tying homer to Peralta. Two pitches later, Piscotty also went deep. “It takes some weight off your shoulders, that’s for dang sure,” Piscotty said of Peralta’s blast. “That was a huge home run. Absolutely huge. We get down early and really are just trying to get one run and he comes through with a homer to get all three right there. It was a shot in the arm and takes the pressure off the offense.” Piscotty added a two-run single in the fifth to chase Jungmann from the game, and the rookie tallied his fourth RBI of the night with two-out, seventh-inning single.

The St. Louis Cardinals continue their rampage! GO CARDINALS!!! 🙂

St. Louis Cardinals’ 4 HRs crush Reds; magic number to 7

With Matt Holliday back in the Cardinals’ lineup for the first time in nearly two months, Matt Carpenter supplied two of the team’s season-high four home runs in a 10-2 blowout victory over the Reds on Wednesday night. St. Louis, which completed a three-game series sweep, reduced its magic number to seven for clinching the National League Central. With the Pirates also victorious on Wednesday, the Cardinals’ division lead remained at four games. The Cards have won eight of their last 10. “I feel our best baseball is ahead of us,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “I’ve said that all season and still believe it. Just the mix of everything we know we can do, put it together for a long period of time. I think it’s ahead.” The Cardinals started the scoring with Randal Grichuk’s two-out solo home run in the second inning against Brandon Finnegan. In the three-run bottom of the third, Carpenter hit a two-run homer. Holliday, in the starting lineup for the first time since July 29 after he recovered from a right quad strain, added an RBI double to make it a 4-0 game. Carpenter’s second two-run homer came in the fifth inning and blew the game open. “I feel like we have a lot of guys that can swing the bat and hit for power,” Grichuk said. “Unfortunately, a lot of us have been injured throughout the year, and now that we’re getting healthy, it’s going to be an exciting October.”

Agreed!! GO CARDINALS!!!! 🙂

Best St. Louis Cardinals ever? 2015 team making a run

The Cardinals are due back in the World Series this fall based on their remarkable pattern of alternating every other year with the Giants as National League representatives during this decade. That is a well-known fact proudly espoused by all of Redbird Nation. But there is perhaps something more important at stake: The title of Best Cardinals Team Ever. As the wins keep piling up at Busch Stadium, it is now worth taking a serious look at possible dream finishes for one of Major League Baseball’s elite, the club of Musial and Gibson and Brock and Hornsby. St. Louis is 86-46 (.652) after 132 games, and at that pace, it would finish with the club’s best winning percentage since the 1942-44 dynasty that was consistently in the .680s. The ’44 club posted its best record 106-48 (.688) of the modern era. Tony La Russa’s 2004 NL champs were 105-57 (.648). Had they not lost Chris Carpenter during his start on Sept. 18 of that season, they might have avoided a fateful sweep in Boston’s reversing of a curse and become the best Cardinals club ever. As it stood, the ’04 Cards were still the team’s winningest club in 60 years at that point. At its current pace, Mike Matheny’s 2015 club is on track for the franchise’s best mark since World War II. The possibilities of the only 107-win season and best winning percentage certainly exist. Let’s consider that .688 mark in 1944 the peak in this club’s history for a moment. Just a 14-16 finish would put this in the ranks of select 100-win Cardinals clubs. And these Cards are unlikely to play anywhere around .500 ball as long as it’s still baseball season.

Indeed!!  Go CARDINALS!!!    🙂