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Cardinals Announce Details Of 2013 Social Media Night

CardsNewsRelease2

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (May 28, 2013) – The St. Louis Cardinals announced that Social Media Night in the Budweiser Bowtie Bar at Busch Stadium June 4th will focus on fan engagement, including giving fans the opportunity to take over the team’s twitter account (@Cardinals) for the game.

“Like radio in the early days of baseball, social media enables fans to follow the team, but with a modern twist that allows them to also be the voice of the Cardinals,” said Ron Watermon, Director of Public Relations. “We thought it would be fun to let fans in our ‘Twitter booth’ to help us call the game.”

The Cardinals will allow fans to tweet the play-by-play and story of the game during Social Media Night by selectively re-tweeting fans that include the hashtag #STLFanTakeover in their tweets.

Fans who buy a special ticket to the Social Media Night event at Busch Stadium will receive access to a pre-game Q&A program featuring Cardinal players who are active on social media. All fans may submit their questions for the players prior to the event via the Cardinals Facebook page (facebook.com/cardinals) and Twitter (@Cardinals, #CardsSocial).

Social Media Night is a great chance for fans of all ages to interact with their favorite “tweeting Birds” face to face, as well as engage with other fans and team officials. In keeping with the fan engagement theme, the team ran a social media contest on Tumblr to have fans design and select the t-shirt that will be given out as part of Social Media Night. For $25, fans receive a Left Field Porch Ticket for the 7:15 p.m.game between the Cardinals and Arizona Diamondbacks, access to the pre-game program featuring Cardinal players, the fan designed t-shirt, the chance to win autographed prizes and more. Tickets are still available at cardinals.com/socialmedianight. Social Media Night is presented by Budweiser.

Social Media Night at Busch Stadium is one of several unique personalized theme ticket promotions planned for the 2013 season.  Theme tickets are customized promotions that allow a select number of fans to celebrate a common interest while enjoying access to a unique promotional item and/or an exclusive pregame event.  Fans can learn more about Cardinals theme nights at cardinals.com/theme.

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Jason Motte and Cardinals Reach Agreement

Motte I70

ST. LOUIS, Mo, January 22, 2013 – The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have agreed to terms with pitcher Jason Motte on a two-year contract for the 2013 and 2014 seasons, avoiding salary arbitration.

Motte, 30, tied for the National League lead with a career high 42 saves in 2012 and became the first Cardinal in franchise history to record every save during the season. The right-hander ranked 9th among N.L. relievers last season with a career high 86 strikeouts, 8th with a .191 opponent’s batting average and T11th in innings pitched (72.0). He also ranked second in the league with 58 games finished.

“We are excited to be able to have Jason under control for the next two years,” said team Sr. Vice President & General Manager, John Mozeliak. “We wanted to recognize what Jason has accomplished for the Cardinals and the role he has played in our bullpen. He exemplifies the type of player on and off the field we want in our organization, and we’re looking forward to having him part of the team for the next two seasons.”

Motte made his Major League debut with the Cardinals in 2008 and since that time has a 17-13 career record with 54 saves. His 54 saves rank 11th all-time among Cardinals relievers, and his 42 saves last season marked the 6th-highest total in a single season, becoming just the fourth Cardinal in franchise history to reach the 40-save plateau (Bruce Sutter, Lee Smith, Jason Isringhausen).

From MLBTradeRumors.com - The agreement buys out Motte’s two final years of arbitration, but won’t delay his path to free agency. He still projects to hit the open market following the 2014 season. Motte had filed for a $5.5MM salary for 2013 and the Cardinals had countered with $4.5MM, as MLBTR’s Arbitration Tracker shows. The 30-year-old set himself up for a raise from his 2012 salary of $1.95MM by posting a 2.75 ERA with 10.8 K/9, 2.1 BB/9 and an NL-best 42 saves this past season.

The deal is worth $12MM and includes performance bonuses, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter).

Motte’s signing leaves two arbitration eligible players left unsigned: third baseman David Freese and left handed pitcher Marc Rzepczynski.

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Instagram Fan of the Day Promotion Announced

Instagram Fan of the Day Promotion Announced
Fans encouraged to follow @cardinals on Instagram & share their original fan photo memories using #cardsgram

ST. LOUIS – September 26, 2012 - The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have launched the Cardinals Instagram Fan of the Day promotion to showcase original, fan-generated photos via the Cardinals social media as part of the team’s end-of-season fan appreciation efforts.

“We are celebrating the best fans in baseball by asking them to share their favorite original Cardinals photo with us,” said Bill DeWitt III, President of the Cardinals. “Thanks to cell phone technology and apps like Instagram, even amateur photographers can take some pretty cool photos.”

Dewitt said the team is urging fans to share original photos of their favorite baseball moment or of themselves, family or friends enjoying Cardinals baseball or just showing their Cardinals pride. To participate in the contest, fans must be at least 18 years of age and on Instagram, follow the team’s account (@cardinals) and tag their photo with the hashtag #cardsgram. Fans can tag as many photos as they like and view photos from other participating fans by using #cardsgram in the search bar ofInstagram.

Everyday throughout the rest of the 2012 season, including hopefully well into the postseason, the Cardinals will showcase one lucky fan’s photo each day on the Cardinals Instagram account, as well as the team’s Facebook (facebook.com /cardinals) and Twitter (@cardinals) pages. The Cardinals Instagram Fan of the Day’s photo will be shared with more than a million fans that follow the club’s official social media channels. Fans can learn more about the Cardinals Instagram Fan of the Day contest atwww.cardinals.com/cardsgram .

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Win Cardinals Tickets

If there is one thing we love to do, it is to give away things to our loyal readers.

We give away books, movies, swag and much more on a regular basis.  Today, we were presented with the opportunity to award our fans with what they really want: the ability to go see their team play in person.

In conjunction with some of our favorite blogs, C70 At The Bat and Pitchers Hit Eighth, and on behalf of Sports Vacation Guys, we give you just that opportunity.

“Our friends, the Sports Vacation Guys have a pair of tickets to give away to one (well, two) lucky Cardinals fans for Monday night’s game against the Padres at Busch.  Currently, their website is being re-vamped, so while it’s under construction, they’ve asked us to help give these tickets away.”
To enter, just tell us
  1. If you could go see the Cardinals play a road game in any other MLB park, which one would it be?
  2. Who would you take with you?
  3. Why?
  4. They will need to provide their name & email address, and may either enter by commenting on your site, or by emailing their entry directly to: Contest@SportsVacationGuys.com

The winner will be announced this weekend on the United Cardinal Bloggers website.

What are you waiting for?  Enter.  Now.

Bill Ivie is the editor here at I-70 Baseball
He is the host of I-70 Radio, hosted every week on BlogTalkRadio.
Follow him on Twitter here.

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Man down!

No, it’s not a leftover headline from 54 weeks ago, it’s a new one, but one that’s all too familiar.  St. Louis Cardinals’ workhorse, Chris Carpenter hasn’t thrown from a mound in days, and it’s likely to be several more days (at the very least) before he does again.  Manager Mike Matheny reminded everyone this week that you’ve got to ‘work backwards from what you think Opening Day is going to look like’, and prepare accordingly.

Chris Carpenter is being evaluated for carryover injuries from carrying the team on his back down the stretch in 2011.

With that in mind, consider Carpenter the Opening Day starter when the Cardinals and new-look Miami Marlins open their new ballpark (and the season*) on April 4.  Assuming the club would want his last spring training start to go 7 innings & take place 5 days before the opener, which admittedly is probably more rigid that what’s probably really expected, especially now, it turns out to be a very aggressive schedule.  Counting backwards from there, Carp would need to pitch on roughly the following schedule…give or take.

This coming Thursday, the 15th, he would need to throw four innings.  If you don’t already see the big problem here, you’re missing something big.  After this Thursday, it would need to be:

  • Tue March 20 – 5 innings
  • Sun March 25 – 6 innings
  • Fri March 30 – 7 innings (last spring start)


I know, right?

Four more starts between now and Opening Day.  The first of those, we KNOW (or are at least 95% certain) isn’t going to happen.  Assuming he does come back and pitch again in spring training this season, a reach at this point, there’s little hope that he would be opening the season that night in Miami.  Heck, back that schedule down to 6 innings on the 30, and it’s still a longshot.

This isn’t good, Cards fans.  ‘course, we were all saying the same thing 54 weeks ago, and I’d say the 2011 season turned out just fine.

*Kind of.  You know, those games in Japan 5 days prior count, but aren’t supposed to be considered “season openers”.  Plus, if you have to add the tag “for games played on U.S. soil” it kind of loses some luster.

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Does Beltran Fit?

Ask a Cardinal fan about Carlos Beltran and one of two things usually come to mind. His 2004 NLCS performance, when he hit 4 home runs in seven games, or his 2006 NLCS-ending strikeout at the hands of Adam Wainwright‘s curveball. With Allen Craig possibly out for the first month of the season, St Louis appears to be in the market for another outfielder, and Beltran’s name keeps popping up. Would he be a fit in St Louis?

Beltran

With Matt Holliday in left and Jon Jay in center, the Cardinals would slot Beltran in right. Beltran has spent the majority of his professional career patrolling center field, sliding over to right only last season. Whether he was a competent corner defender is somewhat ambiguous. He saved 1 run on the Dewan plus/minus scale, ranking 13th amongst right fielders, making him average. By UZR/150, on the other hand, he posted a -9.2, which would be below average. By way of comparison, Lance Berkman cost the Cardinals 10 runs in right per Dewan, and was -10.2 by UZR/150.

So should the Cardinals bring Beltran in they would get a defender not much better than Berkman was last season.

At this point of his career, however, St Louis would not be signing Beltran for his defense, but rather for his bat. Beltran is still an elite offensive player. He has not posted an OPS+ less than 100 since 2005. Last year he posted an OPS+ of 152 while splitting the season between pitcher-friendly Citi Field and pitcher-friendly AT&T Park. He’s hit the ball particularly well in limited action at Neo-Busch. Beltran has appeared in 12 games since the stadium opened in 2006, posting a .340/.407/.681 line. Granted, he wouldn’t have the luxury of facing Cardinal pitching anymore, but regardless he seems comfortable hitting in the ballpark.

Beltran probably won’t command $19 million like he did his last 3 seasons in New York, but it’s not unreasonable to think he’d at least command Rafael Furcal money ($6 or $7 million for next season). For that kind of salary, one has to wonder if the Cardinals would cede the starting RF position to him and relegate Craig back to the bench. That in and of itself would be a tragedy; for if Craig proved anything in the post-season, its that he is ready for a full-time job in the Majors.

So does Carlos Beltran fit on the Cardinals team? Probably not; not for the money it will take to sign him. No GM in their right mind is going to pay someone $7 million to be a bench player.

Mike Metzger is an I-70 contributing writer. He tries to blog about the San Diego Padres. Follow him on Twitter.

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World Series DVD Winners

Last week, Greg Luethen wrote about how he almost missed game six of the World Series. We then challenged fans to tell us their story for a chance to win a copy of the World Series DVD from A&E. The following entries will be receiving a copy courtesy of A&E and all of us here at I-70.

Luke McGowan
My story, much like many others, was one of defeat, exuberance, defeat again, and utter hysteria to end it all. I was at a friends house watching the game and it was just us two. Living in St. Louis and only being miles from Busch Stadium I almost couldn’t handle that I was not at the stadium or at the very least downtown outside of the center field gates; then the game got ugly. I now was happy I didn’t waste my time going downtown, what a deflating loss to end it all. We had stepped out onto the front patio where we were taking a smoke break and I thought to myself ‘this might be the last Cardinals game until April…I have to at least keep an eye on it.’ Through the window of the house I could see the TV and saw Allen Craig’s home run. At that moment I too was even more disgusted with Matt Holliday and why he wasn’t replaced earlier that game. Plagued by Albert’s possible last at bat we went inside to watch the rest of the game, but for some reason I could not sit down. Deep down inside, I had a feeling, I knew it was possible, and it was causing me to be so anxious I couldn’t possibly sit. It was at that moment, when David Freese came to the plate that Greg himself text messaged me “brace yourself, you may never forget the next 10 minutes of your life.” This text turned out to be spot on. The home run by Josh Hamilton in the 10th was the most deflating moment of the entire game. After one of the highest highs, we hit the lowest lows….but little did we know that fate had not spoken. A day I will remember for ever, and a Championship I will share with my grand kids some day. Go Cardinals. #12in12.

Jake McGowan
I was in Washington DC at a tax conference sponsored by Ernst and Young. I enjoy attending this conference each year and had signed up about a month earlier. However, this year my plans had hit a bit of a coral reef. Through the good graces of my son Jack and daughter Grace, I had purchased tickets for games 1 and 7 of the World Series. Game 1 was a great success and a glorious start for the Cards. I then checked the calendar and realized (what a bummer) I could not attend Game 7. It was scheduled for Thursday October28th.

I arrived in DC on Wednesday for the first day of the EY Tax Conference. There were rumors floating about that the Cardinals game might be cancelled that night due to rain. If so, then the final two games would be rescheduled to Thursday and Friday. My flight on Friday was scheduled to arrive in St. Louis around 4:45.

I was elated at the thought that I could be able to attend game 7 after all. Game 6 now took on much greater significance for me. I could not believe I might actually see Game 7 of the World Series. Not only that, but I would be able to take that all-time famous sports fan by the name of Madj (lol).

As soon as the dinner banquet concluded on Wednesday evening I went to a sports bar in Washington DC by the name of Green Turtle. It was about the third inning and the Cardinals were losing when I arrived. I then witnessed the dropped fly ball by David Freese, replays of the earlier Cardinal errors and the two Ranger homeruns.

I was the only Cardinals fan in the place. I didn’t care and was bantering a bit with about 6 younger Ranger fans around the TV. It was a little bit of fun. After all it was the World Series. However, after 7 innings I could not take it any longer. I politely bid farewell to the Ranger fans and told them to come visit us in St. Louis sometime.

It was cold and dark and late and raining as I went back to the hotel. The weather fit my mood perfectly I went to my room watched TV news for about ten minutes and tried to go to sleep.

After about an hour I heard that familiar ching ching from my Iphone which meant I had gotten a text message. Out of curiosity I jumped up and looked to see what was happening. It was a text from my son Luke that simply read, “Best Cardinals game ever.” I though “oh my gosh, what is happening?” Had the Cardinals won and I missed it? I quickly turned on TV in my hotel room to see David Freese walking to the plate.

They were in the 11th inning. I couldn’t believe the score was tied. My hope and anticipation suddenly woke up. At the same time I felt like I was in a dream. How did this happen? I cannot believe David Freese is coming to bat. Then, WHACK! ~ out to center field sails that majestic line drive that was clearly going to be a game winning walk off homer. The second it went over the fence I instinctively let out a very loud, “Yeeeaaaaaaahhhh.”

The euphoria of the Cardinals win was immediately intensified for me as I realized that I my life long dream of attending a game 7 of the World Series was going to probably happen!

The rest is happy history. I still think sometimes that I was in an amazingly good dream for the whole experience! I got to take my wife to game 7. My soon to be daughter in law Blake was there. She is great. The only member of my family not really involved was my lovely and dear daughter Esther. She doesn’t care about the Cardinals. Haha.

Matt Thiel
My story is pretty simple: I talked a buddy out of selling me his Game 6 tickets. With Game 6 and 7 originally scheduled for Wednesday-Thursday, I scheduled a vacation day for Friday so I wouldn’t have to worry about getting up at 3:30a eastern for work IF Game 7 happened. I had scheduled this vacation day out a week or so before, but with craptastic weather rolling through St. Louis Wednesday, a buddy with tickets to Game 6 and Game 7 shot me a text to see if I wanted to take his Game 6 tickets off his hands and just call off work Thursday too. His girlfriend is a teacher in St. Louis, and definitely had to work Thursday, so any sort of long rain delay would probably mean A). she’s miserable to deal with for the next couple of days or B). they would have to leave in the middle of the game.

I passed on Game 6 tickets on Wednesday. Then…

Thursday comes, and he asks me again ‘Hey, do you want to grab these Game 6 tickets?’. His girlfriend has to work Friday morning, and I don’t since I already had this vacation day set. I passed again since I would be back home in St. Louis in a couple of weeks for a Blues game, and at $225 a pop, it’s a little pricey to watch Jaime Garcia try to collapse.

Then magic happened, and not more than 30 seconds after Freese gallops home, I get a picture mail with no text from my buddy and his girlfriend. Dick move, but appropriate since I talked him out of selling me his tickets twice.

Needless to say, I would gladly pay him with a Brinks Truck full of gold to rewind it back to that Thursday.

Congrats to our winners.

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Same-Same-Same-Same-Different

Game. Seven.

The emotion those two words invoke, and the implied level of importance are captured in cliches we’ve all been hearing about for weeks and weeks now. (And yes, the feeling is different than hearing the words “game” “five”.) It’s serious for players, but often is more serious for fans, who are sometimes not so matter-of-fact about teams & games that they neither play for or are a part of, save maybe occupying a seat in the stands.

I will obviously not be playing in the 7th game of the World Series at Busch Stadium tonight…or any other night, for that matter. But as a superstitious fan, I will be trying to do my part to “help” the Cardinals in the quest for their 11th World Championship.

I’ve been wearing the same shirt during games for weeks. I’ve sat in the same place on the couch to watch every postseason game. I’ve not shaved in a month (and it looks awful, by the way), or so much as trimmed it, nor have I gotten a haircut. I’ve only gone to the bathroom after the bottom of an inning ends, never the top. I’ve driven more than 25 miles to be sure I had the same meal. I had 5 gallons of milk in my refrigerator at one time, and even my girlfriend’s kids remind me daily to stick to my routine, be it a meal, or anything else they noticed me doing on the day of a win.

I have my superstitions, and there’s no shortage of them.

I’m not sure that I am capable of writing anything you’ve not heard, read or seen by this point, with regard to David Freese, and all the heroics from last night’s thriller. The 5 blown leads, the ‘down to their last strike’ twice, all of those things have been covered very well over the past several hours. I thought Bernie’s piece in particular was one of many great reads on the topic, and Alyson Footer also wrote an interesting piece today–you should check them both out.

All I can do is write about what I know for sure.

  • There hasn’t been a World Series game 7 played in 9 years.
  • There hasn’t been a World Series game 7 played in St. Louis in 30 years
  • For tonight’s game 7 to happen, the Cardinals had to overcome impossible odds.
    • 10 ½ games out of the wildcard in the final week of August
    • They had to win. A lot; Atlanta had to collapse
    • They had to defeat the almighty World-Series-bound-since-December Phillies
    • They had to knock off Prince Fielder, Ryan Braun and the Brewers in Milwaukee
  • The National League had to win the All-Star game for St. Louis to host game 7
So many stars had to line up just right for tonight’s World Series game 7 to be played in St. Louis tonight. So. Many. I can also tell you for sure that there is no way I wanted to miss an opportunity to be in the stands tonight. It’s a possible once-in-a-lifetime chance.

I’ve been to the old Yankee Stadium. I’ve been to two major league baseball games in two different cities in the same day. I’ve been to a double-header. I’ve been to National League Division Series games and National League Championship Series games in St. Louis. I’ve been to the All-Star game, the homerun derby, the legends, futures, and celebrity softball games in St. Louis. I’ve been sitting in the stands when a perfect game went into the 8th. I’ve been to a lot of very special games, seeing in person special milestones (and sometimes the milestone plus one). But, I have never been to a World Series game. I’ve had World Series tickets, but I’ve never been to a game.

Tonight, I will be wearing the same shirt I’ve been wearing for these games. I will (or maybe have, by the time you read this) eat what I’ve eaten, avoid shaving, and continue with almost every single one of my superstitious routines. I will not, however, be sitting in “my spot” on that couch for tonight’s game, though a part of me will be nervous for not doing so. I will instead be at tonight’s game at Busch. It is perhaps the most elusive of all games on my baseball bucket list, and tonight, attending a World Series game gets marked off the list. I can only hope that seeing a World Series-winning game also gets checked off tonight. Perhaps then, on Sunday afternoon, I can attend my second World Series parade & ceremony.

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2012 Official St. Louis Cardinals Postseason Pep Rally

2012 Official St. Louis Cardinals Postseason Pep Rally

DATE: Tuesday, October 4th

LOCATION: The Ballpark Village Lot, located at Clark Street & Broadway.

TIME: 1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Fredbird & Team Fredbird will give away prizes

Trixie Delight, a local rock cover band, will provide musical entertainment

Rick Horton, Todd Thomas & Pat Parris

Governor Jay Nixon

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Just What Do You Get With $30 Million?

For starters it can get you five to eight years (at 30 per) of the best player in baseball. It could get you another five or so years of roughly 328/43/127. At the very least it will get the Cardinals another 2.5 million fans through the turnstiles and continued jersey sales.

Come this November John Mozeliak is going to have a big decision to make. This decision ties directly into Mozeliak’s future with the Cardinals. The direction Mo and management choose to go with all that loot will determine whether he is the next Joe McDonald or Dal Maxvill. Perhaps the question should read “what should you get with $30 million” rather than what do you get.

Bill Dewitt is the father to Mozeliaks’ son. The situation reminds me of a father who gives his son a $50 bill and tells him he can spend it any way he wants…as the boy walks away the father yells from a distance but don’t spend it all in one place! Granted the scale is different. It is a lot easier to recover from misspending $50 as opposed to $30 million. But if there is a more fitting analogy for the upcoming Cardinals offseason, please someone tell me.

Should the Cardinals choose to invest the money into one player, Albert Pujols, it’s an easy sell to the fans. You keep the best player in baseball in St. Louis and make sure he retires wearing the Birds on a Bat. You create a reason to turn in and come out to the games. The marketing slogan writes itself, “Come out and watch Albert’s assault on the records books.” The fans will file in and the Cardinals will win some games.

The danger in this is a return to the McGwire era. A time when the Cardinals were relevant not for winning pennants or competing for the World Series but for their dominating super star. The games were must see TV and the team set attendance records year after year. And it is safe to say profits were up for Dewitt & Co. Well for myself and many other fans being relevant and winning some games is not enough.

Which leads to the another answer to the initial question. Follow the father’s advice and spread the money around. $30 million can get the Cardinals one player, a 3-time MVP. It can also get them two more years of a Cy Young winning pitcher, two to three years of a switch hitting 5-time All Star and either a legit middle of the rotation starting pitcher or an actual closer.

Anyone who has watched the Cardinals blow 24 saves and struggle behind Chris Carpenter is torn between rectifying those issue and locking up Pujols long term. From a logical, baseball point of view it should be an easy decision. As nice as it is to have the best player in baseball, the best player of a generation, perhaps the best hitter of all time a Cardinal, winning a World Series takes precedence.

As much as I wish the choice was mine, it is not. It is up to a group of individuals as concerned with profits as they are with winning. They will make the decision which way to invest more with their wallets than their hearts. Will it be Albert Pujols or will it be Chris Carpenter, Lance Berkman and Heath Bell.

Either way Cardinal faithful will fill the seats at Busch. But for how long. It has been four years (with Pujols) since the Cardinals last won a playoff game. If the empty seats this season are any indication, the fans are tired of mediocre baseball. The real question is, are the owners?

These are just my thoughts…keep on reading and you’ll get up to speed.

Derek is on Twitter @SportsbyWeeze and also writes for the Rams at RamsHerd.com
Also on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SportsByWeeze

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