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81 Games In

The Cardinals have played 81 games as of last night's better-off-forgotten(-unless-you're-as-big-a-Jim-Edmonds-fan-as-I-am[-and-even-then]) summer-ennui synecdoche. Here are the most interesting numbers to come from doubling real numbers:

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  • Albert Pujols: .306, 40 HR, 120 RBI. This is what existential-nightmare Albert Pujols does: Lead the league in home runs and creep up on the RBI leader. (That's the triple crown stat he hasn't yet topped, don't you know.) Here's a pessimistic way to put it, if you're in that frame of mind: The Albert Pujols who makes us wonder if the Cardinals will have to overpay him hits like someone who would get a $150 million contract anyway. 
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  • Matt Holliday: .301/.375/.498, 22 HR. If we're really and truly heading back to the eighties, as the giddy year-of-the-pitcher press would have it, this kind of season is MVP caliber if he gets enough dopey RBI out of all the doubles. We're not headed back to the eighties, at least not yet, but for a disappointment, and a disappointment who hasn't yet finished pushing his OPS up, flirting with .900 while playing excellent defense and running the bases like a smaller-headed man is pretty fine. If he stops hitting poorly in certain easily accessible splits
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  • Colby Rasmus: 32 HR, 70 BB, 162 SO. These two seasons make considerably more sense if you give Rasmus Holliday's, which looks a lot like something that would come from a tall, thin center fielder who can glide from base to base. Rasmus's numbers look like Holliday's swing, and are just as effective, aesthetics aside.  
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  • David Freese: 8 HR, 72 RBI. Freese's opposite field antics have come as something of a surprise to me—he hit 26 home runs in his last full minor league season, and struck out just barely too often for me to be convinced the .300 averages were for real. But he's having about as good a season as a third baseman can have when AP style dictates that I spell out his home run total with letters, instead of numbers. 
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