Season Record: 85-77 Standing: 3rd
Attendance: 2,910,368 Manager: Tony LaRussa
Opening day Lineup: (St. Louis: 11, Milwaukee: 9, Home, March 31st)
2B – Fernando Vina
SS - Edgar Renteria
CF - Jim Edmonds
LF - Albert Pujols
3B - Scott Rolen
1B - Tino Martinez
RF - Eli Marrero
C - Mike Matheny
P – Matt Morris
All Stars: Gold Glove Winners:
Edgar Renteria Jim Edmonds Scott Rolen Edgar Renteria Mike Matheny Scott Rolen
Edgar Renteria Albert Pujols
Albert Pujols - Batting Average (.359)
Albert Pujols - Extra Base Hits ( 95)
Albert Pujols - Runs (137)
Matt Morris - Shutouts (3) Albert Pujols - Hits (212) Albert Pujols - Total Bases (394) Albert Pujols - Doubles (51)
MVP Albert Pujols (2nd)
Edgar Renteria (15th)
Jim Edmonds (tied 27th)
Games I attended this season:
Date Game # Opponent Score Seat Price 5/4 15 Expos 6-2 W Terrace Reserved $18
2003 Team Info.(from Baseball-Reference.com) 2003 League Stats (from Baseball-Reference.com)
What an (another) incredible year for Cardinals fans!!! It was a year that started out with high hopes, went into mid-year mediocrity, but then to start the last month of the season in first place only to end up three games out!!! Pass the Pepto!!!
I think two things affected the 2003 Birds more than anything.... We never really made up for the loss of Andy Benes, Chuck Finley, and of course Darryl Kyle. There was a lot of wins for these guys in 2002 that were never replaced this year. The other thing was injuries; Vina, Isringhausen, Cairo, Edmonds, Morris, Marrero, Drew, Calero, etc. All teams have injuries to key players during the year, but I think the Cards were too thin on the bench and down on the farm to compensate.
Started the season on March 31st. The earliest opening day date in history. (Also 1998)
The team hit better, scored more runs and made almost 30 fewer errors than last year, but the Birds were only 14-25 in one-run games and gave up 210 home runs. It's pretty easy to see where their weakness ultimately was....
In spite of not making the post-season for the first time since 1999, this season did produce a number of good things!
Albert Pujols - wins the NL batting title and ties a ML record for most home runs in the first three seasons of a career (114). -- Imagine what kind of awesome career numbers he will put up!!! He had the second best ever slugging percentage for a 23 yr old player. (.6667) (The best? Willie Mays, .6673)
Albert Pujols had a 30-game hitting streak. (starting 7/12)
Edgar Renteria - becomes the first NL shortstop since 1985 (Hubie Brooks) to have 100 RBIs. -- He has become one of the few indispensable Birds...
Tony LaRussa - gets his 2000th win as a manager and ends the season with 2009. -- Say what you will about him, it does take a great manager to get 2000 wins....
Mike Mattheny - finishes the season with no errors!!! -- Doesn't have to have a bat if he can continue to do it with the glove. (Does need some solid help so he can rest once in a while.)
Joe Girardi - gets his 1100th career hit.
Let's get ready for 2004!
2003 Report Card:
On September 10th, Tony LaRussa becomes just the eighth manager in ML history to win 2,000 career games as the Cards defeat the Rockies, 10-2.
The Cardinals beat the Brewers 11-9 in the home opener on March 31st. Tino Martinez and Scott Rolen homered and Russ Springer gained his only victory of the season in relief.
(Tell me your highlights from 2003!)
NL Division: Chicago over Atlanta (3-2) NL Championship: Florida over Chicago (4-3)
World Series: Florida over New York (4-2)
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