The St. Louis Cardinals are on fire, and there’s only one explanation for their newfound winning ways…
By Neil Harrington
Before the MLB All-Star break, the St. Louis Cardinals were hovering slightly above the .500 mark — a heartbeat away from the pit of the National League Central standings.
For any regular MLB squad, a 47-46 record is generally acceptable — but not for the historic St. Louis Cardinals franchise.
More than mediocrity, it was the style of play displayed on the baseball diamond. Sloppy defense. An unreliable bullpen. A lack of effort. A team who had lost faith and trust in their manager.
Fast forward a month and some “change,” the Cardinals now sit atop the NL Wild Card standings — on the heels of the Chicago Cubs for first place in the NL Central.
What’s gotten in the St. Louis Cardinals?
Is it the savviness and leadership of (interim) manager Mike Shildt? Or, is it the resurgence of Matt Carpenter? Perhaps, the revamped bullpen arms? Maybe the spark is from the youth movement of the Memphis Redbirds MLB call-ups.
Nope, none of the above. It’s all in the salsa, baby!
Just before their current winning surge, veteran pitcher Adam Wainwright planted the seeds of what now is an epidemic in not only the Cardinals’ clubhouse but throughout Arch City — and far across the country — inspiring Matt Carpenter’s (secret) salsa recipe.
A few weeks ago, the crew of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball swayed Carpenter into allowing them to partake in the spicy salsa.
In the middle of May, Carpenter was batting a lowly .150, seeking out the help of hitting experts — who informed Carp that his swing was just fine.
Out of options, Carpenter turned to something else. A new salsa recipe, of all things — which evidently enhances one’s abilities, as Popeye’s spinach does.
Now, Carpenter is leading the NL in home runs and is the front-runner to claim the NL Most Valuable Player Award. It’s all in the salsa, folks!
Other MLB players are now taking notice, turning to the salsa for succor.
Last week, former St. Louis Cardinals slugger Matt Adams paid a visit to Busch Stadium — seeking out such (salsa) intervention for his hitting woes.
The salsa is so good, in fact, that Adams decided to exchange clubhouses to partake in its superman-esque powers.
Matt Adams “Big City” wanted some salsa when the Nationals were in town last week..Cordially I had to deny him of that request due to conflicting interests.. Now my friend I shall bathe you in it! #ItsGottaBeTheSalsa🍅🌶🔥
— Matt Carpenter (@MattCarp13) August 21, 2018
ICYMI — Did Kolten Wong just make the most ridiculous play of the year?
— FOX Sports Midwest (@FSMidwest) August 22, 2018
Iron-man Yadier Molina rode the wave of the salsa, starting 26 straight games behind the plate — which is unheard of at the position.
The St. Louis Cardinals are riding its flavor through the dog days of summer and all the way into the MLB postseason.
— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) August 21, 2018
It’s gotta be the salsa, right?!