A five game series with the Detroit Tigers will reveal if the Royals are contenders or pretenders.
The St. Louis Cardinals have unquestionably played their worst baseball of the season the past three weeks, going 4-11 against the four best teams in the National League, but that rough stretch could be a large dose of the medicine the team needs to be ready for the playoffs.
The Royals have a chance at the postseason, but they have to get through the Tigers and Indians.
The loss of the designated hitter in their return to National League play might actually help the team.
The St. Louis Cardinals had their choice of two pitchers to send to the minor leagues Friday when righthanded starter Jake Westbrook returned from injury.
The Cardinals also have plenty of cushion right now. They have the best record in baseball and plenty of other lesser prospects that can fill temporary voids.
Is it too early to start thinking about the trade deadline? That used to be an easier question to answer.
The steady stream of players headed back and forth to the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds should soon subside when right-handed starter Jake Westbrook makes his return to the team Friday against the Miami Marlins.
The St. Louis Cardinals have rolled through the second month of the season with a 20-6 record heading into the final two days of May, but they’ll face much stiffer competition as the calendar turns to June.
Right-handed starter Adam Wainwright has been a leader on the St. Louis Cardinals staff for years as he became co-ace of the pitching rotation with Chris Carpenter, but the team needs Wainwright’s leadership now more than at any other time in his career.