Royals and Cardinals are dogged with feeble hitting

04/26/2014 5:09 PM

04/26/2014 5:10 PM

There’s a power outage in Missouri.

The Royals’ scoring woes, particularly their lack of home runs, have fans gnashing their teeth around here. But things are worse 250 miles east.

While the Royals entered Saturday’s game ranked 27th in the majors in runs per game (3.64), they were ahead of the Cardinals (3.38). St. Louis’ 12 home runs were 29th, ahead of only the Royals (nine).

Additionally, the Cardinals are 28th in slugging percentage.

After being shut down by the Mets’

Bartolo Colon on Thursday, Cardinals manager Mike Matheny

lamented the offensive woes.

“We’re not putting it together, we’re not stacking hits on top of one another, we’re not getting the big hit,” Matheny said. “You can’t expect to win anything when we just didn’t have a whole lot to work with here.”

A year ago, the Cardinals led the National League in runs, scoring 77 more than second-place Colorado. But a decline wasn’t unexpected. Losing

Carlos Beltran

to free agency hurt, but the Cardinals also were sensational last year with runners in scoring position and couldn’t possibly hope to match that.

They hit .330 in that situation, an astonishing 48 points better than second-place Detroit, and the best average of any team since 1950, when those records were first kept. This year they’re hitting .227 with runners in scoring position.

“You look at this team, they’ve all historically hit, and I believe they will,” general manager

John Mozeliak

said on the team’s website. “I just don’t think this offense has gotten on track. You’re not going to hit with runners in scoring position like we did last year, but we’re still capable of stringing multiple hits together and scoring runs. I also think when the weather warms up a little bit, you’ll see more power.”

The good news for the Cardinals is they are in second place in the National League Central with a 13-11 record.

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