In the midst of all those home runs, the St. Louis Cardinals played a style of small ball under Whitey Herzog that they had been playing throughout the decade, relying on speed, aggressive baserunning and manufacturing runs (along with good defense and a good bullpen). They won their third pennant of the 1980s that year, even though they ranked last in the NL with only 94 home runs — in a season in which the Cubs and Giants both topped 200.
The Cardinals did other things well, however: They led the league in steals, walks and on-base percentage, and that allowed them to rank second to the Mets with 798 runs scored. As a point of comparison, the Dodgers hit 221 home runs in 2017 and scored 770 runs.
Source: David Schoenfield, ESPN.com
For a few years now, I’ve felt that a team that was going nowhere should sell out and copy the 1980s Cardinals. While you can’t find a guy who will steal 100 bases, you can find guys who can grab you 40 or so. If you were willing to punt power, you could have a lineup with four guys who stole 40 bases and that would create problems for other teams. If you’re going to lose 90 games anyway, at least do things differently. You never know, it might still work.