After signing Willson Contreras, the St. Louis Cardinals appeared to have a very strong lineup entering the 2023 season.
Fans were excited to see the new-look lineup in action as well.
However, the offense has underachieved thus far and has been a glaring issue for St. Louis.
The Cards were shut out on Thursday night by the Pittsburgh Pirates after having seemingly conquered their offensive struggles in Colorado.
Stranding runners has been a key issue for the team.
There are third in all of baseball with an expected batting average of .274 based on launch angle and exit velocity.
However, John Denton of MLB.com pointed out two issues that have been plaguing their lineup.
This #STLCards start has been forgettable, but they believe things will turn around because of stats like this, per Statcast:
The Cards rank 3rd in MLB in xBA (.274) based on exit velo & launch angle.
* STL 25th in BA RISP (.238)
* 23rd BA RISP 2 outs (.208)
— John Denton (@JohnDenton555) April 14, 2023
The Cardinals have been struggling mightily with runners in scoring position, which has been a common theme over the past several years.
They are 25th in the league in batting average with runners in scoring position with a .238 mark.
But to make matters worse, they are especially struggling with two outs and runners in scoring position.
They are 23rd in the league in that category with a .208 batting average.
These are issues that are going to need to be corrected if the Cardinals are to bust out of their early season funk and start winning games again.
They were the overwhelming favorites to capture the NL Central title in 2023.
However, they are currently at the bottom of the division with a 5-8 record.
The team will continue its four-game set with the Pirates on Friday and will look to bounce back from Thursday’s loss.NEXT: Willson Contreras Has Vastly Improved In An Important Area