May 27, 2007
Home runs by former Cardinal Ronnie Belliard and Ryan Langerhans (who hit a grand slam) were the keys to the victory by the Nationals over the Cardinals today. Once again, the bargain-basement team from Washington showed they belong in the major leagues, prevailing over a World Champion team that has been "under-achieving" this year. Until the second week of May, the Nationals had not won any series this season, but since then they have won four out of five series. What is especially notable is the fact that in only one game during this period have the Nationals been outscored by more than two runs. The team's future looks bright, and the present isn't so shabby, either.
One of the biggest contributors to the recent success has been relief pitcher Jesus Colome, who has won four games (leading the Nats) and an ERA of only 2.20. Only four other pitchers with 30 or more innings this year have a lower ERA than that. See MLB.com
In New York, the Yankees got swept by the Angels, and are only one game ahead of the last-place Devil Rays in the AL East. This, notwithstanding the superb performance of Jorge Posada, who leads all major league regular players in batting average, with .372. (He batted .287 in his best year, 2000.) Derek Jeter is batting .352, close behind.
Tim Gilbert writes to ask if anyone has ever heard the St. Louis Cardinals being called the "Fighting Cardinals." He has a family heirloom souvenir mini-baseball bat, probably from the 1920s, and it contains the words "Sportsmans Park" and "Fighting Cardinals." He posted a message about this on baseball-fever.com, but no luck yet. Anyone?