Oli Marmol's Jack Flaherty comment will only make things worse for Cardinals fans

Jack Flaherty is giving the Cardinals reason to regret trading him.
Miami Marlins v St. Louis Cardinals
Miami Marlins v St. Louis Cardinals / Joe Puetz/GettyImages

The St. Louis Cardinals have had a pretty rough go of it over the past two seasons. In 2022, they were the same old Cardinals we are all used to: pesky, using some of that devil magic which helped them win 93 games and win the NL Central, which also included an MVP win from Paul Goldschmidt.

In 2023, it all began to go downhill. There was excitement to open the season, with the team signing Willson Contreras and having Jordan Walker on the Opening Day roster. Despite that excitement, nothing went right for them all season long. Walker was up and down, Arenado wasn't himself, Tyler O'Neill dealt with injuries and the pitching was a disaster.

All of the struggles led to St. Louis selling at the deadline. They sent Jordan Montgomery to the Rangers, where he was a big part of their World Series win. Jack Flaherty, who once looked like the next ace of the Cardinals, was shipped off to Baltimore.

Now, it looks like the Cardinals will be regretting both moves, even when Flaherty struggled mightily over the last couple of seasons.

Jack Flaherty faced St. Louis and made them look foolish

Over his final season and a half in St. Louis, the right-hander regressed from his top four Cy Young finisher form. He only made eight starts in 2022, but his strikeout numbers dipped to less than one per inning and he walked 5.5 per nine. Then, it looked even worse in 2023.

In his 20 starts before being traded, he posted a 4.43 ERA, walking 4.4 per nine and striking out 8.7 per nine. Those numbers improved after the trade, when in Baltimore he struck out 42 in 34.2 innings, but his ERA got worse, putting up a 6.75 in seven starts.

While it looked like St. Louis may have made the right decision, Detroit took a flyer on him over the winter. It didn't end well for Flaherty and the Cardinals, which he made very clear. So far in 2024, leads the American League in strikeouts, is only walking a batter per inning and has posted a 4.00 ERA, but has a 2.83 FIP. He pretty much looks like his old self.

The drama between the two sides came to a head on Tuesday when the Cardinals visited Detroit and Flaherty was on the mound. He began the game striking out seven straight batters and finished his night with 14 strikeouts and just one walk and two hits allowed.

After the game, Cardinals manager Oli Marmol made some comments that don't exactly instill confidence in the third-year manager after his rough start to the season.

"He was on, and it was nasty. He has his stuff," Marmol said.

There's no doubt that he had his stuff on Tuesday, but Marmol's post-game comments will continue to show Cardinals fans that he may not have a full grasp on the position still.

If Flaherty continues to pitch well, and Montgomery gets right after a long offseason and slow start, you wouldn't be able to blame Cardinals fans for being upset. The pitching is still struggling, with two of their starts with ERA over five. Luckily, Sonny Gray should provide some stability and Lance Lynn has looked good after his disaster 2023 season.

The storyline of Oli Marmol will be one to watch all season, particularly if they continue to struggle. It may be coming to the point where some changes need to be made, especially if Marmol can't get things under control.

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