THAT'S A WINNER! The St. Louis Cardinals entered the MLB post-season with a record of 83-79, the worst of any team to make the playoffs. Friday night, they left the post-season as World Series winners, defeating the Detroit Tigers in four out of five games. The team many of us left for dead this year are unlikely and improbable champs!
The team overcame a lot of adversity during the season, and even though they "won ugly" in the World Series (thanks to several Detroit miscues and despite strong hitting), the Cardinals pulled it off. Cardinals third baseman Scott Rolen put the season into perspective: "We tasted a lot of failure this season. I can tell you this tastes a lot better." (Source.)
Cardinals shortstop David Eckstein was named series MVP. Deservedly so. But as the Post-Dispatch's Joe Strauss wrote, the team was chock full of MVPs -- players who delivered at clutch moments. Eckstein. Yadier Molina. Scott Rolen. Jeff Weaver. Anthony Reyes. The bullpen. And, yes, even manager Tony LaRussa.
Congratulations to the Cardinals and to Cardinal Nation. Congratulations, too, to the Tigers, who had a terrific season under the tutelage of Jim Leyland. I'm sure they'll be back next year.