Okay, I get that no team can go undefeated, and every team loses games… I get it, I really do. But Cardinals fans, this one was tough to swallow. I mean the Cardinals finally get to Walker Texas Ranger, or Bud “Chuck”Norris, and what do they do? They find a way to blow a game. That’s 6 blown saves by the bullpen (5 by Franklin and 1 by Mitchell Boggs). And whereas I am not going to place all the blame at the feet of #41, he does deserve some of the blame. That pitch that went roughly 55 feet and bound away from Molina, I mean wow what was up with that? And the fielding goof, just get the out Mitchell, by looking to third base before picking up the ball he cost the Cardinals on that play. And he wasn’t going to get the runner out at third base anyway, so get the sure out. But this game was lost in alot more than just that play. If I’m going to praise the Cardinals skipper for being brilliant Friday night, when he started Batista knowing the weather that was coming, and essentially saving Kyle McClellan for after the long rain delay. Well if I’m going to sing Tony’s praises, I am most definitely going to call him out when I think it needs to be done. You finally score runs vs a pitcher who has flat out owned you, and with the lead and Garcia lifted, rather than bring in the young guns who have shined thus far, you bring in Miguel Batista? Why, why, why?????? Please tell me why? Batista clearly was not the answer. Then you get the lead and decide now’s the time to bring in your “closer” Mitchell Boggs. Now I am not going to join the hordes of folks that already are clammering to the “Cardinals need a closer club”. I believe that Boggs deserves the benefit of the doubt, if for no other reason, there simply is not another answer. Again I absolutely refuse to put either of the “S” twins (Salas, Sanchez) in that role, not yet. I like them as the 7-8 inning guys, along with on occasion Jason Motte. And secondly why I am not ready to throw Boggs under the bus just yet, he has been sharp enough in his 3 saves that he deserves a pass. Come on the guy’s human, and even though this loss disgusted me to the point where I needed to seriously cool off before writing this. Logic dictates that there will be losses, but what bugs me is how it was lost. I mean Boggs was able to get one out, but was clearly off his game tonight. But the big question is this: WHY WHY WHY was the infield not at double play depth when the bases were loaded and one out. The ground ball that snuck through allowing the winning run to score, clearly would have been or at least should have been an inning ending double play and extra innings. So whether LaRussa positioned the infield that way, or they did it themselves was just plain “not smart”. This should have been a triumphant return for Lance Berkman, who looked good at the plate tonight. And hey, even without Albert Pujols the Cardinals managed 5 runs and a ninth inning lead. Granted there were some hiccups by Jaime Garcia (Pence’s bomb early on for example), but still Garcia left the game with the lead, only to see Batista blow that. So once again in my mind the defense and to an extent the bullpen, cost the Cardinals a win that they should have gotten. Once again defeat grabbed from the jaws of victory, and it was a very tough pill to swallow. If, and this is a huge IF, the defense does not get it’s act together, this will be a long season. So now game two tomorrow night, and another bright spot and pleasant surprise as Kyle Lohse with his 3-1 record and his 2.01 ERA takes on Astros hurler J.A. Happ with his 1-3 record and 6.94 ERA. All signs point to another possible Cardinals offense explosion, but if the defense behind the pitcher keeps playing like this, well again we could see another disgusting loss. So defense, get your heads out of your backside, fans don’t give up on Boggs yet, and to Mitchell Boggs face it you are the “closer”. So don’t let this little hiccup ruin your confidence, and don’t let the Astros steal another win. I have faith, but my faith is being tested by what I’m seeing on the field and from the dugout, so I want to see maximum effort from everybody. Nobody is immuned, and if you think you are, well…..