1) Adam Wainwright delivered his best start of the season during his five innings of craftwork in Monday’s 10-6 win at Arizona. I didn’t know what to expect from Wainwright after he made the decision to rush back to the mound after a brief 20-day break from pitching to treat his ailing right shoulder. No lie from me here; I wasn’t expecting much. But the two cortisone shots into the shoulder worked, the rest worked, and Wainwright went back to work.

2) Waino looked good, allowing four hits, two walks and two earned runs. Arizona hitters were baffled by him for 16 called strikes, and his stuff had some snap and some life. Wainwright’s Game Score of 52 was his best in a start this season. The 41-year old righthander faced 21 Arizona batters who collectively batted .222 with a .508 against him.

3) The only negative? Wainwright deserved to collect career win No. 199, but the bullpen defaulted on the 5-2 lead he passed to the relievers. But if Wainwright can approximate this performance a few more times over the next two-plus months, he’ll get to No. 200.

Jul 24, 2023; Phoenix, AZ, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright (50) throws to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first inning at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-Arizona Republic


4) The STL offense put up a team effort, with most of the members making contributions large and small. Three hits and two runs from Brendan Donovan. A two-run homer and three RBI by Paul Goldschmidt. A solo home run by Nolan Arenado. Lars Nootbaar singled, walked three times, scored two runs and had an RBI. Paul DeJong went 2 for 3 with a walk and run scored. Tyler O’Neill, who entered the game as a defensive replacement, pierced the Diamondbacks for a three-run bases-loaded double to punctuate the winning rally in the ninth.

5) The Cardinals had 12 hits, five walks, struck out only three times and went 4 for 7 with runners in scoring position. This was one of most complete performances of the season for the STL offense and the Cardinals needed every bit of it to wrestle a win away from the Diamondbacks.

6) It was another volatile evening for the St. Louis bullpen, which got rocked for four earned runs, seven hits, three walks, a hit batter, a home run and a double in four innings. None of the four relievers used in this game came away with clean sheets, but closer Jordan Hicks did a fine job of navigating through ninth-inning trouble to put the game in the lockbox for the visitors. Chris Stratton was popped for two runs, Jo Jo Romero was struck for two runs, and Giovanny Gallegos blew a save by surrendering a first-pitch double to Evan Longoria in the seventh. Both of Gio’s inherited runners scored on the blow as Arizona took a 6-5 lead. But at least Gallegos held the Diamondbacks scoreless in the eighth, and Hicks took care of the ninth after his teammates erupted for five runs in the top half of the inning.

7) The Cardinals have blown 23 saves this season, most in the National League and tied with the White Sox for the most in the majors. Gallegos has five blown saves in 13 save ops this season, and his ERA is 5.23 over his last 10 appearances.

Overall the Cardinals have let 31 leads slip away in their first 101 games. Their bullpen has a 5.88 ERA since June 28 which ranks 24th in the majors over that time. St. Louis relievers have a 4.80 ERA during the first five games of a seven-game road trip.

8) As KTVI-TV noted, the Cardinals appear to be threatening the MLB record for most blown saves in a season – 36 by Washington in 2021.

9) According to Katie Woo (The Athletic) the Cardinals are “planning to hold on to Tyler O’Neill at the trade deadline” but on one condition: “The Cardinals aren’t looking to move him, barring a contending team taking a gamble on O’Neill’s ceiling and buying high,” she wrote.

10) So in other words, the Cardinals won’t give O’Neill away for a couple of Taylor Swift concert tickets. The front office presumably is receiving lowball offers for O’Neill to this point, and if that’s the case there’s no reason to donate O’Neill to another team. He’s under contract for 2024 and figures to be a highly motivated athlete as he enters his free-agent walk year. That said, are the Cardinals and O’Neill really going to do this for another season as both parties search for his lost 2021 performance? Probably so, according to Woo. And there is peace in the valley.

11) As manager Oli Marmol told reporters in Arizona on Monday night: “We’ve seen him really good, where he’s a Gold Glove outfielder who gets to a lot of baseballs a lot of other left fielders don’t get to. He’s got some real closing speed out there. From a defensive standpoint, it’s really nice to have him. Offensively, we’ve seen him hit 30-plus homers and drive in runs and be a real threat at the plate. I do believe we’ll see that again. He’s confident, he’s feeling good and he’s bought into what needs to happen.”

12) If the Cardinals keep O’Neill does that mean they’re more likely to trade outfielder Dylan Carlson? Probably so. But we don’t know what John Mozeliak is up to. The Cardinals and outfield logjams go together.

13) Goldy’s old home: In 11 games at his former baseball residence (Chase Field) since being traded to the Cardinals before the 2019 season, Paul Goldschmidt has batted .326 with a .407 OB and .674 slug in 54 plate appearances. And he has five homers as a Cardinal at the old place, hitting one every 9.2 at-bats.

14) Since June 6, Brendan Donovan ranks fifth in the majors with a .346 batting average. That’s not all; his onbase percentage is .416 over that time and he’s slugged .512. What a wonderful hitter.

15) Willson Contreras came off the bench to draw a key walk in the Cardinals’ five-run ninth inning Monday. This is one of the best parts of his offensive profile; Contreras has a 10.1% walk rate this season and that’s juiced his .341 onbase percentage. In his last 23 games, Contreras has 29 hits (.377) with eight walks and seven hit-by-pitches for a .473 OBP. Since June 16 his OPS is 1.135, which ranks fourth in the majors among hitters with at least 90 plate appearances over that time. The only dudes with a better OPS than Contreras during this stretch are Shohei Ohtani, Will Benson, and Matt Olson.

15a) Among qualifying MLB catchers this season, Contreras ranks fourth in wRC+ at 15 percent above league average offensively – and he’s still climbing. The only catchers with a better wRC+ than Contreras are Will Smith, Adley Rutschman and Jonah Heim.

Thanks for reading …


Bernie hosts a weekday sports-talk show on 590 The Fan, KFNS-AM. It airs 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 4-6 p.m. on Friday. You can listen by streaming online or by downloading the show podcast at or the 590 app.

Please follow Bernie on Twitter @miklasz

The “Seeing Red” podcast on the Cardinals, featuring Will Leitch and B. Miklasz is available at, the 590 the fan app or your preferred podcast platform. Follow @seeingredpod on Twitter for a direct link.

All stats used in my baseball columns are sourced from FanGraphs, Baseball Reference, Baseball Savant, Fielding Bible, Baseball Prospectus or Bill James Online.

Bernie Miklasz

Bernie Miklasz

For the last 35 years Bernie Miklasz has entertained, enlightened, and connected with generations of St. Louis sports fans.

While best known for his voice as the lead sports columnist at the Post-Dispatch for 26 years, Bernie has also written for The Athletic, Dallas Morning News and Baltimore News American. Bernie has hosted radio shows in St. Louis, Dallas, Baltimore and Washington D.C.

Bernie, his wife Kirsten and their cats reside in the Skinker-DeBaliviere neighborhood of St. Louis.