You know how I HATE to toot my own horn, but I did say a while back that the schedule was quite favorable for the Cards to go on a nice run. They've exceeded my expectations, however, with their latest feat being a 5-2 West Coast road trip to extend their lead in the Central to an MLB-best 8 games over the Cubs. With the Cubs on the skids and no other Central team above .500, it seems almost a certainty the Cards will win the division. Lots of baseball left I guess, but it seems pretty unlikely we could lose an 8 games lead with 36 left to play. Tomorrow is an off-day, then a 9 game homestand against the Astros, Nationals, and Brewers. Best news of all: that black hole known as the 5th starter role my now be filled! Certainly, it's just one start, but Smoltz gave us quite a bit more than Wellenmeyer, Boggs or whomever else we've tried at the back of the rotation. Now, if we could some get Lohse turned back around, but really, it's hard to complain. The team is playing great, and life is good as a Cardinals fan right now.