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Joe Kelly The Reliever Looks Familiar, Thanks To The Cardinals' Extra-Innings Extravaganza

The St. Louis Cardinals disappointed the members of the burgeoning Joe Kelly fanclub over the weekend, when they shuttled the rookie starter to the bullpen instead of demoting the ostensibly sputtering Lance Lynn or the basically forgotten Jaime Garcia. Let it not be said that the Cardinals ignore the best fans in baseball: Joe Kelly put together one of his best starts of the season Sunday, holding things together for five innings before allowing a clutch of baserunners two outs into the 17th.

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I count it as a blessing that Jaime Garcia also put together his best outing of the season, allowing two runs on five hits and striking out 10 in eight innings of his own—I'm not sure I'm prepared for a mid-August rotation controversy. Garcia lowered his ERA nearly half a run, to 4.00 even, but Kelly knocked his own down to 3.27.

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Perhaps most impressively of all, Adam Wainwright improved his on-base percentage to .160. The Cardinals may yet lose this game, but most of their pitchers have successfully impressed their biggest fans. (I'm a charter member of the Adam Wainwright The Hitter Fanclub.)