ST. LOUIS - The standings suggest the Cardinals (50-34) are enjoying a great season while the Marlins (32-52) are enduring the anticipated falloff of an off-season fire sale.
But you should ignore the standings when the teams meet at Busch Stadium on Friday night and Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
The Marlins are playing like contenders while the Cardinals are suffering through their worst stretch of the season. Miami has won five of its past six series, a run that started with beating St. Louis two of three in mid-June. The Cardinals have won only one of their past five series and are coming off a heart-crushing 6-5 loss in Anaheim Thursday night that was lowlighted by Edward Mujica's first blown save opportunity of the season.
Since May 31, the Marlins own the best record in the majors, 19-11. The Cardinals have gone 15-16 over the same stretch.
Getting healthy has been one key to Miami's turnaround. Sluggers Giancarlo Stanton and Logan Morrison returned from injuries in ear...