The sluggishness of the St. Louis Cardinals, the ‘prestigious team’ representing the major leagues, is not unusual. 

St. Louis lost 1-5 against the Los Angeles Angels on the 3rd (Korean time). St. Louis, which recently fell into a swamp of four consecutive losses, recorded a season record of 10 wins and 20 losses, and the winning rate fell to 303.3. Finished in 5th place in the Central Division of the National League. The decline is accelerating with 1 win and 7 losses in the last 8 matches. It is also the 스포츠토토 only team without a winning series after the opening. 

Left-hander Steven Matz (32), who started this day, gave up the game early, giving up 4 points from the first inning. After one out, Matz allowed the first run on a walk and consecutive hits before being hit by a three-run home run by Taylor Ward. He endured until the 5th inning, but lost the game with 6 hits (1 home run), 2 walks, 4 strikeouts and 4 runs in 5 innings. 

Until this day, Matsu is sluggish with an average ERA of 6.39, holding only 4 losses without a win in 6 games of the season. He has never played more than 6 innings in a game. His 4.4 walks per 9 innings was the most since his debut, and he allowed home runs in 5 of 6 games. St. Louis lost all six games Matz started. 

After being traded to the Toronto Blue Jays in 2021, Matz, who was a New York Mets prospect and was not as big as expected, won 14 wins (7 losses), the most for an individual, and played an active part with an ERA of 3.82. Matz, who came out of the free agent market, was acquired by St. Louis for four years and $44 million. At the time, left-handed pitcher Kim Gwang-hyeon (SSG) was released as a free agent, but St. Louis, who were not active in renewing the contract, announced their breakup by signing left-hander Mats. 

However, Mats performed sluggishly last year, the first year of transfer, with an average ERA of 5.25 with 5 wins, 3 losses and 2 holds in 15 games (10 starts). He only pitched 48 innings due to shoulder and knee injuries. Matz, who has been sluggish again this year, the second year of his contract, is becoming a FA failure with a 5-7 ERA of 5.70 in 21 games (79 innings) in St. Louis for two years. 

In addition to Mats, key starting pitchers such as Miles Mycholas (6G 1-1, ERA 5.97) and Jack Flaherty (6G, 2-3, ERA 3.94) are struggling. Jordan Montgomery (6G, 2 wins, 4 losses, ERA 3.34) is doing his part, and is only 21st overall in starting ERA (5.01). WBC veteran Adam Wainwright is out of business after suffering a groin injury. In the bullpen, top-class closer Ryan Helsley is struggling with three blown saves in nine games. It is weak with 1 win and 5 losses in the 1-point match. 

The batting lineup led by Paul Goldschmidt (batting average .304, 4 homers, 14 RBIs, OPS .909) and Tommy Edman (batting average, .267, 4 homers, 10 RBIs, OPS .914) ranked 14th in team OPS (.738), which is on par with the league average, but Nolan Arena Do (batting average .233, 2 homers, 14 RBIs, OPS .590) and Tyler O’Neill (batting average .241, 2 homers, 6 RBIs, OPS .654) stand out. All-star catcher Wilson Contreras (batting average of .266, 2 home runs, 11 RBIs, .746 OPS), who was recruited as a free agent, is not making up for the presence of retired Yadier Molina. 

2007 was the last season with a winning rate of less than 50% (.481), and from 2008 to last year, St. Louis recorded a winning rate of 50% or more for 15 consecutive years. The last place in the world must go back to 1990 (70 wins and 92 losses). The sense of crisis in the 2023 season of St. Louis, which is not like a traditional strong player, is rising, but Arenado was confident of a rebound. “I know expectations are always high for us, but I don’t know why they think the season is over already. There are still five more months left in the season,” he said. 

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