We maybe seeing an absolutely epic fold on our hands. The St. Louis Cardinals lost their seventh straight game, to the San Diego Padres last night, while the red-hot Houston Astros won their seventh in a row against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Houston is now only 1 1/2 games behind St. Louis. The Astros have just 5 games left, while St. Louis has six (including a possible makeup game against the Giants on Monday is needed).
The Cardinals had a seven game lead with just 13 to play, but that has been whittled down in one big hurry. It is very reminiscent of what happened to the 1964 Philadelphia Phillies, which is the absolute gold standard for late season collapses. Nothing compares to what happened to them that season. The bigtime collapses of the 1951 Brooklyn Dodgers maybe close (sorry Mom and Dad), as well as the 1993 San Francisco Giants and 1995 California Angels (the 1978 Red Sox isn't really that close, just overrated), but what happened to the Phillies was unbelievable. They were up by 7 1/2 games with 11 to play in 1964, and went out and promptly dropped nine in a row and lost the NL pennant on the final day to the....St. Louis Cardinals.
This season the Cardinals have gotten hit with some key injuries, most notably to David Eckstein, Jim Edmonds and Jason Isringhausen, who needs surgery and is out for the year. They are still in first, but have to find a way to end this streak, or this team will go down in history, and in a way no one in St. Louis will want to remember.
It would be nice to see the Mets start winning before the playoffs begin. Granted, these games mean really little (they remind me of those late in March spring training games) since the Mets wrapped up everything last week. And you don't want any of your stars getting hurt in rather meaningless games. But a little momentum on their part would be a nice thing to see, especially since the San Diego Padres are playing so well and could be poised for an upset if they get in.
It doesn't really count for the Mets until the first pitch is thrown at Shea early next week. Then we see what kind of team the Mets truly have, and if they can go all the way.