One simple clip shows exactly why the Cardinals aren’t competitive in NL Central

The St. Louis Cardinals are on pace for their worst season in recent memory, and one clip from an NL Central rival proves why: it's on the manager.

Miami Marlins v St. Louis Cardinals
Miami Marlins v St. Louis Cardinals / Scott Kane/GettyImages

St. Louis Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol has had a bad season. It all started with a bizarre clubhouse conflict with outfielder Tyler O'Neill, and has since devolved into poor bullpen decision making and roster construction. Of course, not all of that can fall on the manager (especially the latter), but Marmol, like the rest of the St. Louis roster, hasn't been good enough to win in 2023.

Marmol is expected to be back next season, as he was given another vote of confidence from John Mozeliak just a few days ago.

“I think the job he does is good, I really do,” Mozeliak said, per The Athletic. “I think this year is tough. There’s always going to be finger-pointing on what went wrong, what could we have done differently. And that starts with myself. We know when we look at 2024, things have to be different, but I’m certainly encouraged with what I see from Oli as a young manager. He’s extremely well organized, I think he’s prepared, and I do think he gets a lot out of his players.”

While Marmol appears safe for now, his counterpart in Milwaukee could be on the outs, but not by the Brewers choosing. Craig Counsell is one of the best managers in baseball, and his urgency come September is a big reason why.

Craig Counsell's urgency makes Cardinals, Oli Marmol look bad

Craig Counsell jumped to the bullpen phone as Mark Canha hit his eventual game-winning grand slam. This is because the Brewers needed to warm up their back-end relief pitchers. It shows the stark difference between Counsell and Marmol, who is often not reactive enough when it comes to bullpen management.

Living up to the standard Counsell is setting in Milwaukee is difficult, even should the Brewers manager retire or leave this offseason. The simple point remains, though: Oli Marmol has to be better if he wants his contract renewed beyond 2024.

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