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Cardinals Links: Duncan, Center Field, La Russa, Wandy

The St. Louis Cardinals managed to avoid a sweep yesterday at the hands of their rivals, but they're still 8.5 games back of the Milwaukee Brewers with just 35 games left to play. They have the firepower to get hot and do something wild, but a streaking Brewers club is making is awfully difficult for the Red Birds to have a chance. Let's check out some links on the Cards while we can still call them a contender:

  • According to Aaron Gleeman of HardballTalk, Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan was not with the club, " all weekend after the pitching coach left the team due to an undisclosed personal matter." Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has added that the organization is unsure of when their pitching coach will return. Duncan is generally considered one of the premier coaches in all of baseball.
  • Dan Moore of SB Nation St. Louis took a look at the Cardinals' center field depth throughout the organization. Charlie Tilson is the big name there now, but Moore also looks at some guys that are closer to the majors, such as Adron Chambers and Daryl Jones.
  • Over at Viva El Birdos, SB Nation's Cardinals blog, one writer has decided that he's finally ready for the organization to part with manager Tony La Russa. Using last Friday's loss as an example, bgh spells out one example of how La Russa is now a detriment to the team's winning efforts.
  • Could the Cardinals be a good landing spot for Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez, who has reportedly passed waviers? One writer at Fungoes thinks so. Noting that Rodriguez's FIP would be the second-best on the team, he believes that the lefty could be a difference-maker down the stretch and a solid long-term investment. I'm not so sure that committing $36 million to Wandy through 2014 would be such a good idea, given how many needs the Cardinals are going to have next season.