One month ago today, I wrote a post called Watch Out For the Cardinals. I hemmed and hawed a lot, because St. Louis looked pretty bad (and aside from the last three games, they still have some serious flaws), but it's looking alarmingly prescient:
In the second half, they are just under 5 per game. They are allowing that many, too, but luck is bouncing back in their favor. When I wrote that article, it was just before the news hit that Carpenter was definitely not coming back; had I known that, I probably wouldn't have bothered. Then again, I didn't expect that the Cards would give so many at-bats to guys like Ankiel and Ludwick over entrenched vets like Encarnacion. That has helped, and the mindset (if not the specific players) are likely to help down the stretch, too.