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The bullpen has been a disappointment all season for the Cardinals. Last season, Tony LaRussa rode the bullpen all the way to the top of the mountain. He loved to pay the matchups, using Marc Rzepczynski in situational spots from the second half of the season and all the way through the postseason.
This season, the Cardinals haven't had a lefty they can rely on. Rzepczynski continues to be terrible and very hittable. He was basically worthless in his appearance against the Phillies on Sunday, walking the only two hitters he faced. Everyone is entitled to a bad outing every now and again, but this has been a season long epidemic for Rzepczynski.
Hopefully Marc can figure things out and continue to pitch a little better as opponents are batting .074 against him since the All-Star break.
Barret Browning was brought up to give Rzepczynski a break and started very well. Lately however, Browning has struggled on the bump, at least on the road. Browning has been lights out at home with a 1.04 ERA and his inner Harvey Dent has come out on the road with a 7.56 ERA.
The Cardinals also went out and took Brian Fuentes off the scrap heap and perhaps they should have left him there. Fuentes has a 9.00 ERA in his six appearances thus far.
If the Cardinals are going to make a serious run at the postseason, the bullpen needs to be shored up and quick, especially from the left side.