Blogs By FansC70 At The Bat
Sponsor
Cardinals_WideSkyscraper.jpg

Baseball Schedule is your best source for the latest St Louis Cardinals Schedule information as well as keeping up with division rivals including Cubs Schedule, Reds Schedule, Brewers Schedule and Astros Schedule.

Bet on the Cardinals with Sports Interaction's MLB betting lines


Slots Galore Casino Tournaments

Get your tickets from Bubba! Cheap St. Louis Cardinals Tickets and more, including tickets for the next MLB All-Star Game. Bubba's got Boston Red Sox Tickets and New York Yankees Tickets

Subscribe
RSS Feed

Archives

Players

Categories


Alliance tickets has an extensive inventory of St. Louis Cardinals Tickets , Colorado Rockies Tickets, San Francisco Giants Tickets and Seattle MarinersTickets.

With all of the St Louis tickets out there, Cardinals tickets and Rams tickets make for great presents. GoTickets.com can fill all of your sports tickets needs, just check out our testimonials

Checkin' in from Winter Warm-Up in the STL...

Posted on January 19, 2013 at 2:13 PM
Filed Under: St. Louis Cardinals
Less than ten players in and already it's clear this Cardinals team is not what we're used to seeing. 

After the 2011 season, the St.Louis Cardinals were hounded by media types from all corners. Late night talk shows, national sports networks, and even a sitcom couldn't get enough of our local boys. Interview after interview, appearance after appearance...it would wear on anyone.

But the players - and Tony LaRussa - ran the gauntlet and persevered. The strain, at least at Winter Warm-Up 2012, was clear.

Carpenter wore his patented scowl throughout the interview process and even smiling personas such as Matt Holliday made do with short, simple, subdued answers. Tony skipped the media room appearance after grueling dinners and interviews, etc., and each and every player wore the weary eyes of men worn out and overwhelmed.

Flash forward to Winter Warm-Up 2013, and the difference couldn't be more noticeable. 

Chris Carpenter - his young daughter in hand - stepped lightly into the media room and started shaking hands. "How you doin'? Good to see you. Yeah, had a good offseason." His media session was light, frank, casual, and peppered with smiles. When finished, it was another interview - this time for TV - in the room next door. Again, Carp met the questions with smiles and even a few quips here and there. His daughter waited patiently while asking, "What station is this going to be on?"

Then it was Holliday's turn. 

After his appearance last offseason, I fully expected Matt to withdraw beneath his stiff, Michael Jordan ball cap brim and face questions as if they were being presented with pinchers in hand. I couldn't have been more wrong.

Holliday spent his time laughing and chatting with scribes on a variety of questions. Do you feel a sense of urgency this season? How's the back? Are you going to sit more days than last year? And on and on...and then he disappeared through the "steel curtain" that separates fans from the "restricted area" that is the media room.

He was back just minutes later to sit and chat with cameras and microphones for another lengthy session. When he was done, it was smiles and handshakes all around.

And the stories go on, player after player, all the same...

This year's Cardinals team is just flat out more relaxed than last year's team. The pressure, while not necessarily "off", is perhaps more easily carried. Maybe they've had a breather. Maybe the longer offseason with fewer spotlights did them good.

And maybe it was a change in personnel.

Most agree Tony LaRussa was an intense leader, and personalities in the clubhouse like Albert Pujols set a rigid vibe with the team. But now, Mike Matheny leads the Cardinals and Pujols has departed for the casual beaches of California. And many believe it's the difference in leadership that's making all the difference.

It should be pointed out that the attitude of this Matheny team versus previous LaRussa teams is not, necessarily, better or worse...but it is different. A team formerly guided by an intense, rigid atmosphere is now coasting along with a manager and clubhouse rooted in relationship. They're more relaxed, more casual...and maybe even "more fitter?" (grammar suicide...)

One consistent theme - at least so far - is a trimmer body type to go with the revamped attitude. Matt Adams is 10-15 pounds lighter, as is Marc Rzepcynski. Both credit diet changes and workouts for the change, but the change is evident.

This Cardinals team is fitter, more relaxed - perhaps more ready - than the 2012 squad at this same time last season. And with the sting of last season's disappointing ending, everyone of them is poised to make a run all the way to the World Series.

- Kevin Reynolds


Leave a comment




Leave a comment





Cardinals_MediumRectangle.jpg

UCB_11_trans_dark_sm.png

Search

 

You can also hear Conversations With C70, along with other great podcasts, at Baseball Podcasts.net.

BallHyped Best Sports Blogs Book
This blog was featured in the Best Sports Blogs of 2010 Book! (As well as the 2012 version!)
Pick up the limited print edition
Free Best Sports Blogs ebook 



United Cardinal Bloggers

FRIENDS OF THE UCB


Some Guy Named Robb--The Music of Conversations With C70 (coming soon!)

Check out the UCB Network over at LockerDome!
lockerdome-share_63x63.png
  


Other Cardinal Blogs

Recommended Cardinal Forum

Other Cardinal Sites

General Baseball Blogs/Sites

Get a Cardinal theme for your browser!

Cardinals banner.jpeg


Heroes
Carlos Beltran (6)
Yadier Molina (5)
Matt Holliday (4)
Jon Jay (4)
Matt Carpenter (3)
Daniel Descalso (3)
Jaime Garcia (3)
Pete Kozma (3)
Shelby Miller (3)
Adam Wainwright (3)
Allen Craig (2)
Lance Lynn (2)
Tyler Lyons (2)
Edward Mujica (2)
Jake Westbrook (2)
David Freese (1)
Joe Kelly (1)
Seth Maness (1)
Trevor Rosenthal (1)
Michael Wacha (1)
Ty Wigginton (1)

2012 Top Hero: Matt Holliday (17)
2011 Top Hero: Lance Berkman (24)
2010 Top Heroes: Matt Holliday and Albert Pujols (24)
2009 Top Hero: Albert Pujols (28)
2008 Top Hero: Albert Pujols (25)

Goats
Jon Jay (6)
David Freese (5)
Mitchell Boggs (4)
Joe Kelly (4)
Pete Kozma (4)
Matt Carpenter (3)
Allen Craig (3)
Daniel Descalso (3)
Jaime Garcia (3)
Yadier Molina (3)
Matt Adams (2)
Carlos Beltran (2)
Matt Carpenter (2)
Matt Holliday (2)
Lance Lynn (2)
Seth Maness (1)
Shane Robinson (1)
Fernando Salas (1)
Adam Wainwright (1)
Jake Westbrook (1)

2012 Top Goat: Rafael Furcal (11)
2011 Top Goat: Ryan Theriot (12)
2010 Top Goat: Brendan Ryan (14)
2009 Top Goats: Rick Ankiel and Todd Wellemeyer (13)
2008 Top Goat: Troy Glaus (13)

Cardinal Nation Approval Ratings (March 2013)
Yadier Molina 96.2% (up 8.8%)
Chris Carpenter 89.8% (down 0.3%)
Derrick Goold 89.1% (up 6.3%)
Matt Holliday 88.4% (up 0.9%)
Allen Craig 88.3%
Adam Wainwright 88.2% (down 3.7%)
Jose Oquendo 87.1% (up 2.4%)
Jason Motte 86.9%
John Mozeliak 86.5% (up 1.1%)
United Cardinal Bloggers 85.2% (up 6.3%)
Bill DeWitt 85.1% (up 5.3%)
Mike Shannon 85.1% (down 0.2%)
John Rooney 84.5% (up 3.0%)
Mike Matheny 84.4% (up 3.3%)
David Freese 82.9% (down 2.6%)
Jon Jay 81.8% (up 10.7%)
Lance Berkman 80.6% (down 8.0%)
Jenifer Langosch 79.5%
Lance Lynn 79.5%
Dan McLaughlin 76.0% (up 8.0%)
Jim Hayes 73.0% (up 1.1%)
Ricky Horton 65.5% (down 2.0%)
Jaime Garcia 64.1%
Albert Pujols 59.2% (up 4.3%)
Ballpark Village 58.3%
Joe Strauss 54.3% (down 13.4%)

2012
Tony La Russa 88.2% (up 17.4%)
Mark McGwire 82.6% (up 20.1%)
Skip Schumaker 73.3% (up 9.2%)
B.J. Rains 69.5% (down 0.9%)
Kyle Lohse 68.9% (up 13.8%)
Al Hrabosky 66.4% (up 3.2%)
Colby Rasmus 46.5% (down 35.3%)

2011
Dave Duncan 87.9% (up 0.9%)
Matthew Leach 85.5%
Pop Warner 76.7%
Ryan Franklin 72.8% (up 3.1%)
John Vuch 68.9%
Jeff Luhnow 66.4%
Dan Lozano 58.7%

2009
Rick Ankiel 83.9%
Chris Duncan 69.1%


Looking for St. Louis Cardinals Tickets?  TicketCity is your source for New York Yankees Tickets and World Series Tickets.

Looking for Cardinals tickets? Stop by OnlineSeats. We’ve got Blues seats and even Rams games. Go to the coasts as well and catch a Celtics game or get Dodgers tickets.

Referrals