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St. Louis Cardinals Betting – Cardinals Set To Take Off Again Even With Pujols Gone

Posted by Dale “Skip” Lalonde on 4/4/2012 4:21:53 PM

Whenever a team loses one of the consensus top players in the sport to free agency in any league, they are usually destined to be hurt by it and take a step back the following season. Whether or not that holds true for the defending World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals following the loss of MVP Albert Pujols is one of the many topics surrounding the team that has been debated this offseason. St. Louis has the talent and depth both in the rotation and batting order to remain a sports betting contender in the years after Pujols, a journey that begins April 4th when they open their regular season against the Miami Marlins.

Unlike last season, the Cardinals will rely even more on their starting rotation with Pujols gone, and that might not necessarily be that bad of a thing. St. Louis boasts one of the better starting rotations in baseball with Chris Carpenter and Kyle Lohse back to lead the way again, and with Adam Wainwright on track with his return after he missed all of last season due to injury, this team may actually have improved on paper after leading ranking near the top of the MLB a year ago. While Carpenter remains the ace, and Wainwright will need to play an important role, Cardinals’ fans understand how much of the credit that Lohse deserves after he led the team in ERA (3.39) and wins (14) through the 2011 regular season.

As for who will fill the gap in the order following Pujols’ departure, it would be impossible to say that just one talent will be able to make up for the loss, but St. Louis has a ton of capable bodies to provide some relief. Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman are both coming off terrific sportsbook seasons, and while they should lose some protection, they are both talented enough to lead the Cardinals’ offense this season. St. Louis discovered it had a couple of offensive gems during its World Series run last season, with both David Freese and Allen Craig emerging as clutch hitters that will now be relied on as regular contributors during the regular season with Pujols gone.

Overall, the Cardinals will need to be much more consistent throughout the course of the regular season to have a chance at defending their title in the postseason. The National League looks to have improved with some new sports bet contenders emerging for 2012, so if St. Louis is going to contend they will have to avoid putting themselves in a hole early on in the season. How strong the World Series hangover this team experiences will go a long way in determining how their season will play out, but the truth is that the talent and depth is there for the Cardinals to make a run at the NL Central title, even without their former MVP Albert Pujols taking his usual spot in the batting order.

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