Cardinals Self-less Leaders (Article by BenFred)
Posted: January 29 19, 2:00 pm
BenFred: Cardinals' leaders setting selfless example that could pay dividends
One of the more impressive components about the 2019 Cardinals cannot be quantified. There is no mention of it on FanGraphs. You will not find it among the ingredients used to cook up Wins Above Replacement. Some will ignore it for these reasons.
Cardinals optimists cite the Paul Goldschmidt Effect, the addition of Andrew Miller’s talents to a needy lefthanded side of the bullpen, a healthier (they hope) Marcell Ozuna, and a full season of manager Mike Shildt, who guided the club to a 41-28 record after last season’s promotion.
Pessimists point toward the uncertainty about Ozuna’s offseason recovery and rehabilitation from shoulder surgery, the human question mark that is Dexter Fowler, the lack of a proven closer and the presence of just one starter who pitched more than 151 major league innings in 2018.
What few on either side of the debate have acknowledged is an approach adopted by some of the team’s best talents, and we are not talking about swing tips from new hitting coach Jeff Albert. Key Cardinals are going out of their way to put the team first. In Shildt they trust. Easy to say. Much harder to do. But these guys are following through.