May 21, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright (50) throws during the second inning against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

St. Louis Cardinals Look to Stay Red Hot Against Chicago Cubs

The question “Who is the best team in baseball?” is often one of the most talked about topics among fans across the country. Sure, they want to say that their favorite team is tops among the league, but this is frequently not the case.

This season there hasn’t been a team with more talent that has showed up than the St. Louis Cardinals. Mike Matheny’s team has been putting on a big show in the division and is providing a reason for everyone to talk about their impressive first two and a half months.

It has started with the team’s pitching, which has been better than ever. This year, St. Louis has been led by Adam Wainwright who has become the first 10-win pitcher on the staff. Wainwright, 31, is in a groove where he has truly had his best stuff. If his five consecutive wins aren’t enough to convince you that he is having a tremendous year, just take a look at his 2.18 ERA, 3rd best in the NL. The 6’7” right-hander will look for his 11th win against the Chicago Cubs in the upcoming series.

That series is going to be big as it has the potential to further distance the Cardinals from the Cincinnati Reds who are already 2.5 games back from the lead.

The Cubs have been very “Chicago-like” this season with their 29-39 record. St. Louis has to take advantage against a rough pitching staff. No MLB game is easy, but the lineup that the “red birds” have is very capable of turning any game into a blowout.

It has all started with Yadier Molina, who is having one of the best seasons he has ever had. Batting .352, he is on pace to break his single-season average record. He leads the NL in the category and has been helping the team lately with RBI’s as he has five in the past week.

There has been no power outage with Carlos Beltran’s bat either as he has launched 16home runs to go along with his .306 batting average. Expect him to tee off this week against Chicago as he is hitting .556 against the Cubs this year. The switch-hitting batter is hitting .320 when batting from the left side, so a steady dose of the right pitchers could lead to some late-inning heroics.

Led by these three stars, the Cardinals are in for another great finish to the season. They won it all in 2011, can they do it again this year?

Tags: Adam Wainwright Carlos Beltran St Louis Cardinals Yadier Molina

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