The 2012 season for the St. Louis Cardinals was a true roller coaster ride. No one was sure what to make of the Albert Pujols departure to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Most Cardinals fans lashed out at the slugger at the beginning of the season and ate up his early season struggles.
Enter Allen Craig. He did an outstanding job of helping Cardinals fans put Pujols to the side when he was healthy enough to be in the lineup.
Carlos Beltran provided a punch on his 35-year-old knees and became the 2012 version of Lance Berkman by swatting 32 home runs and driving in 97 runs.
The Cardinals made a late-season run to secure the Wild Card and beat the Braves in the one-game elimination Wild Card game. Pete Kozma almost went down in Cardinal history for the wrong reasons, pulling a boneheaded play in the Braves game similar to the one Matt Holliday pulled in the 2009 LDS against the Dodgers in the deciding game where he took a ball in the nether region and cost the Cards the game.
Then there was the gritty series against the Washington Nationals with a game for the ages in the decisive Game 5. That game certainly ranks up there with the 2011 Game 6 World Series where Lance Berkman kept championship hopes alive to allow David Freese to cement himself in Cardinal lore forever.
There were some great moments in 2012 for the Cardinals and some heartbreaking ones. Here is my list of the top five moments from the past season.