St. Louis Cardinals – 2015 Central Division Champions
Best Record in Baseball with 100 Wins
Central Division Champions Third Year in a Row
2015 was a Both a Great Year and a Very Trying Year
The Cardinals started the 2015 season by jumping into first place in the Central Division early on. They stayed in first place all year, despite being plagued with injuries throughout the year — injuries that put both key position players and pitchers on the Disabled List (DL).
Throughout the year, the Cards rallied around the chant “Next man up!” and managed to continue winning games. Pitching was key to secure wins since the St. Louis offense didn’t produce much all year-long. However, they benefited tremendously from rookies Randal Grichuk, Stephen Piscotty, and Tommy Pham who both inspired and carried the Cards at times.
The Cards starting pitchers, John Lackey, Michael Wacha, Jaime Garcia, Carlos Martinez, and Lance Lynn were solid the majority of the season. Trevor Rosenthal garnered a franchise record 48 saves.
Key position players during the year included Matt Carpenter, Jason Heyward, Jadier Molina, Jhonny Peralta, and Kolten Wong.
By September the Cards Were Running Out of Gas
By the time September rolled around the Cardinals as a team were faltering. The starting rotation, which had been stellar before the All-Star break, basically fell apart: Michael Wacha and Lance Lynn slipped in performance, and Carlos Martinez was lost to the DL with an arm issue.
Matt Holliday and Matt Adams attempted to return from lengthy injuries, but both faltered. Yadier Molina went down with a hand injury. Jhonny Peralta was worn out, and his offensive output dipped considerably. Kolten Wong had intermittent injuries, made several defensive blunders, and his hit bat cooled significantly.
A bright note near the end of the year was Adam Wainwright returned from a season-long injury and was able to pitch a few innings out of the bullpen, doing a commendable job.
St. Louis Cardinals Postseason NLDS Series
The National League Division Series (NLDS) was painful for St. Louis. Unfortunately, the outcome was not entirely a surprise, as the Cards lost to the Cubs 3 games to 1.
Next Year — the 2016 Season
Now it’s time for the Cards to look forward to next year. The Cards have youth on their side and should have a good chance for another winning season. Hopefully, the Cards will be able to stay healthy and avoid the complications that plagued them in 2015.