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The Cardinals-Cubs Rivalry and Frustration in the Playoffs and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs News, MLB News and Rumors

mike matheny cardinalsI didn’t watch the whole Steelers/Bengals game last night, so I missed the end, which apparently involved the Bengals making two really stupid physical penalties to hand the game to the Steelers. I did see enough earlier in the game to wonder how it was that, in the playoffs, the two teams couldn’t control themselves a little more. I get if you don’t like each other and if there are prior beefs, but somehow you have to find a way to lock it up in the playoffs when 15 yards could be the difference between a win or a loss.

  • I was reminded of the September series between the Cubs and Cardinals that involved plenty of chippiness – Remember the Cardinals throwing at Anthony Rizzo, and Joe Maddon getting really pissed?Remember those dirty/borderline dirty Cardinals slides?* – but neither team let that carry over into the playoffs when they faced off in the NLDS. Indeed, you wouldn’t even really think about it carrying over. I certainly didn’t at the time. None of this is to make it a baseball/football thing, because what do I know? I’m only saying I’m glad to know that the Cubs (and, to a much lesser extent, the Cardinals) could bury that stuff enough to not throw any more beanballs or start jawing at each other at inopportune times.
  • Also, I’m glad that the Cubs are undefeated in playoff series against the Cardinals.
  • Also, I’m glad that the rivalry is only going to heat up next year, what with two former Cardinals joining the Cubs (one of whom has already been the subject of Cardinals saltiness).

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  • Edwin Jackson has his deal with the Marlins, according to Jon Heyman. It is, in fact, a big league deal, and it even comes with a no-trade clause (when there’s no point to negotiate the dollar amount, and there’s competition for your services (apparently), you can negotiate the other stuff, I guess). As we discussed, that’s (minor) good news for the Cubs, who now save a little over $500,000.
  • Ever seen those ugly yearbook photo things? Well, how about when a star MLB pitcher tweets out an old yearbook photo … of the Commissioner?
  • Grant Brisbee takes an interesting look at the Giants’ moves this offseason to see how much they’ve improved on paper, and, even if doing it the way Brisbee does is more about the discussion than the analytical precision, it still looks to be a rather substantial improvement.

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  • *(I am only now reminded that one of those two ugly slides was by Jason Heyward. I’m not going to change my tune on the slide now that Heyward is a Cub – going in high and late, over top of the bag, into a guy who is already using the base to protect himself is not OK in my book – though I will say now, as I said then, that at least Heyward’s slide was nowhere near as bad as Yadier Molina’s. Heyward at least went down at the bag, even if he then skipped over it into Addison Russell (getting rid of that will require a rule change). I just don’t like it, because there was literally nothing else Russell could have done to protect himself. So I understand why Heyward did it, I understand why it’s legal, and I understand that it did break up a double play (and directly led to a run for the Cardinals, too). But I don’t like it in the least.)

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Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor of Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation.

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