Cardinals chat: Derrick Goold takes your Cardinals questions at 11 a.m. Monday

Cardinals chat: Derrick Goold takes your Cardinals questions at 11 a.m. Monday

Bring your Cards questions and comments to a live chat with Derrick Goold at 11 a.m. Monday

    Do you think ONeill is on the verge of becoming a consistent MLB hitter? Do you think the Cardinals patience is paying off? I thought he was done when the Cards pinch hit Dean last year for the last bat against the Padres.
    He showed improvement that was encouraging during spring training. One two-homer game does not cement that. But it continues a solid trend. Worth watching -- because he's going to get a lot of playing time in the near future to show he's a changed and emerging hitter.
    With talk that the Cards may try a six man rotation at some point, I am curious why teams have been hesitant to do it to date. An extra day of rest would help, not hurt, a pitching staff, no? Or are pitchers at their prime efficiency in a 5 man rotation?
    This isn't talk. They're doing it. The Cardinals are in a six-man rotation now. Oviedo will be promoted in the near future -- most likely to start Wednesday's game against Philadelphia. How they're going to use the six-man rotation, and the reasons behind it are covered in the story linked below. Why hasn't this been done before? Well, part of it is depth. Teams are struggling to find five starters they can count on, let alone six. Maddux said there have been staffs when he's had two or three reliable starters and had to "patchwork" the rest of the rotation from there. Didn't have the depth to go with six, let alone four or five. That's usually the stumbling block for teams. They'll shift to a six-man rotation briefly, insert a young starter or a journeyman starter just to cover some innings, but they don't have the depth to pull off a true six man rotation. They're better off then using that roster spot for a long man to absorb innings in mopup role then to turn to the pitcher and get in a bind by starting him every fifth day.
    The link: 

    Goold: Cardinals set to expand rotation with rookie Oviedo, prove six can be their serious number

    STLtoday.comAs the Cardinals start a stretch of 17 games in 17 days, they will try to keep starters rested.
    Gorman, Libertore and Thompson chances of being traded only in a blockbuster move with a proven player in return?
  • That would be the idea, yes. The Cardinals are not eager to move any of them, and they're not entertaining conversations that include trading them, not at the moment.
    Going back to the no-hitter poll question. I totally understand the people that would argue that it wasn't 9-innings, so it isn't a no-hitter. The reason that I say it is a no-hitter is that he completed the scheduled length for the game without allowing a hit. If MLB deemed that 7-innings (for that game) constituted a regulation game, then it should also count as a no-hitter. Weather or some fluke didn't shorten the game, MLB made the decision to before the game was started.
    Well said. He played the game he could. MLB ended it at seven, not a force of nature.
    Apologies if this has already been discussed. I just got on the chat. A lot has been said and debated about Shildt’s lineup construction. Speculation on fan sites is that the lineup is dictated by the front office. My question is who is making the decisions on playing time/batting order?
    This is common speculation throughout all 30 teams throughout the past two decades. The Cardinals have this approach, and it dates back to TLR.
    The front office makes the roster.
    The manager makes the lineup.
    There are elements of the lineup that the front office has questions about -- for sure -- and Mozeliak has sometimes talked about his view of the lineup, like who to hit where, or what he'd like to see here, and it doesn't match up with what Shildt then chooses. That's because, sometimes, they're operating with different information. An example of this was way back in the Thomas, Arozarena, Bader days, as the front office was eager to see more from Thomas and more chances for Arozarena offensively, and Shildt made the point about how they were good on defense, could count on their defense, and when Thomas was injured he went back to Bader in center because of the elite defense.
    We also saw this when Wong was demoted to Class AAA years ago. Mozeliak made that move because the manager wasn't playing the infielder. Kept going to the veteran Ellis. So, Mozeliak controlled the roster and put Wong in the minors to play, not gather rust on the bench.
    Re: extreme shifts. Did you notice that ball that Harper slapped down the third baseline against us in Philly? That guy had hit maybe the longest homer of the year earlier in the game? I'm convinced he saw an easy double with men on base, and did that on purpose.

    Players have been directing grounders to the right side and/or hitting a can of corn for a sac fly to the outfield for a long time. It used to be doable and still could be a part of the game.
    I think he took advantage of hitting where the pitch was. I don't think he swings a pool stick or a golf club. He made the most of where the pitch was placed, and maybe a better execute pitch makes it impossible for him to do that. Again, that's just me.
    Seven inning games mess up the record books like the steriod era. MLB needs to stay true to the game and stop over thinking it. 9 innings, 27 outs it's not difficult
    A 60-game season messed up the record books. But we're not taking that away.
    Derrick, I am curious if Mo has ever given an explanation/justification for the Carp extension? Doesn’t the analytic team project production and at what level it should be compensated? Or did Cardinal sentimentality play a part in the decision?
    Opportunity. Both sides. And also ownership's interest in maintaining, holding onto players. Keep that in mind, too. That was going on at the same time. They wanted to keep their stars through their careers, and they felt that Carpenter was that homegrown All-Star to keep around. His versatility helped. The timing was such that he went to the Cardinals and said he was interested in doing a final-deal contract. Fold the option into the deal, and make it a last one. Cardinal for life. It was something that Carpenter sought, something that Girsch and the front office recognized as a move for the right price, and it fit with ownership's interest in keeping players after seeing some leave.
    Given your explanation of responsibilities re lineup construction/control, can you make the argument that Shildt was more responsible for losing Arozarena than Mo, since he did not play him enough? I know Mo traded him, but maybe he did not have enough information.
    This is what the Cardinals meant by auditing how they handled that situation and what they could have done differently. They all sided on playing time. They all sided on not giving him the opportunity necessary to see what they had. That does involve the manager and the dugout. But that also speaks to the front office could have changed the roster, too. This notion is driving the current team -- you can see it. O'Neill is about the play a lot. Why? Because the Cardinals don't want to move on and find him excel and slug and crush elsewhere. That is very much on their mind. Has been with Thomas too. Has been with Justin Williams, as well. This is why they have made such a big deal about this approach with the outfielders this season. It's the Arozarena Adjustment.
    Just a quick fun question: Favorite under-used stat/sabermetric?
    I think RBIs -- while a context stat and a counting stat -- has been unfairly maligned in recent years. They are not the equivalent of a "win", sorry. I think they have value beyond being a narrative stat.
    Well, we had that 60 game season back in 2020, so you can change any rule at all and then justify it. You can't mean this, right? Come on, a pandemic shortened season is not analogous to a short-sighted commissioner making a rule change. How about two outs per inning to get these games moving along?
    It's a fair comeback, and I appreciate the well-stated counterpunch. My point is that, yes, we've seen substantive changes to the game. If I'm listing the things that have changed in baseball to the actual game, I'm putting seven-inning doubleheaders down the list, well down the list, way way way way down the list ...
    1. Ghost runner on second in extra innings.
    Way, way down on the list: no pitch intentional walks.
    Next: seven-inning doubleheaders.
    What about starting each count 2-1? Put more balls in play?
  • That's too far, my friend.
    You occasionally post pictures of your scorebook on Twitter (which I enjoy). Is the book you use with the Cardinals logos on the pages available to purchase anywhere?
    It's one of a kind, and not for sale. It's for personal use. I don't have licensing rights for the logo that I use for the year. Only have permission to use it for myself.
    Would it have been a deal breaker if Colorado had insisted on Gorman or Liberatore as part of the Arenado trade? They had to have come up, right? Would love an oral history of that trade.
    The Cardinals were not going to part with that level of talent in that deal because they recognized they had all the leverage to avoid it. Rockies did not have much. As we've outlined many many many times the break for the deal was when Arenado forced it. Was always the case. He did. They had to make it. Cardinals held many cards. There were some fascinating twists and turns in the final 72 hours before the deal was done that I am eager to confirm, understand better, and know that the info won't be coming from the Rockies' departing GM.
    Has Gant now moved ahead of Carlos Martinez as it pertains to being in managements eyes essentially the 4th of 5 starting pitcher's in the rotation?
    No. Not at the moment. But it's only April. Gant has pitched well.
    Hi DG, loved your counter intuitive suggestion for getting more balls in play. super interesting. Here's my question though (which I don't think you or Kevin brought up), wouldn't more grounders just make the shift *that* much more important?
    I contend the opposite would happen. But I'm willing to hear evidence to the contrary.
  • I vaguely remember my college statistics class discussing the "myth of the hot hand," demonstrating that the chance of making any given shot wasn't impacted by whether the previous shot was a hit or a miss. I was thinking about that idea amidst discussions of the streakiness of the Cardinals offense. I haven't updated my statistics knowledge in almost 30 years: do advanced metrics in baseball try to measure streakiness as a measurable thing now, so that some players and teams are better at consistent offense than others, or is the hot hand still considered a myth?
    Interesting question. So what advanced metrics like exit velocity and launch angle and the like are trying to do is break it down to the numbers that a hitter can control. It's the same idea that gives rise to Fielding Independent ERA, as an example. What are the things that a pitcher can control? Well, he can control getting a groundball, but not if that ball is at a fielder or if that fielder makes the play. So a statistic that tells us that a pitcher is good at getting groundballs and we know from baseball that X-percentage of groundballs can be turned into outs, then we have an idea of what to expect from the pitcher. I think the comparison the hot hand theory is well stated because what they're trying to do is turn the coin flip into dice.
    Allow me to explain.
    The hot hand theory is essentially that if you flip a true coin and come up with heads 12 consecutive times the odds of flipping the coin to tails is still 50/50 for No. 13. If the coin is true, then the odds of getting a 13th head or a "due" tails are the same as if you flipped it at No. 7 or No. 77. The probability is the same.
    These advanced stats take that the coin and turn it into dice by saying ok, a majority of the time -- say four out of six -- this pitcher gets a groundball, and five out of six times that becomes an out, so the odds are in our favor that he will get a groundball (roll the dice) and then it will be an out (roll the dice again). I'm simplifying things, obviously, but teams are banking on the idea that exit velocity, contact rate, and hard-hit rate, and launch angle are further increasing the probabilities of hits.
    If a hitter makes contact 6 out of 10 times (roll 10-sided dice)
    And hitter makes hard contact in 3 out of those 6 (roll six-sided dice)
    And the hitter has an above average launch angle 3 out of 6 (you get the idea)
    Then you have a sense of the probability of a hit. Now, that might be caught, the hitter might be unlucky, but it's not a case of counting on the hitter being "due" -- it's a case of the probability liningup that if he makes hard contact often, that he will be rewarded for that the larger the sample size gets. The probability will balance.
    Hope that makes sense. Was a really good question. It's not the hot hand myth. It's just the probability that drives the quest for better stats, like the current ones du jour.
    How about, any pitch delivered at 96+ mph is a called ball if the batter doesn’t swing? Slower pitches, more hitting, better pitcher health, less pitcher fatigue, etc.
    No thanks. I like velocity -- out of the hand, off the bat. It's fun to see pitchers throw 100.
    I am sure you have answered this, but I am a bit concerned about MLB and Manfred moving the AS game from Georgia to Colorado. So the good folks in CO are more deserving and politically correct than the good folks in Georgia? It’s a slippery slope. Maybe they could have used the occasion to make a point on the issue rather than hightailing it. And maybe I missed something, but it came out of the blue, without much public debate. I am not condoning the law, but states all over the country pass bad laws.
    The element that concerns me is just this: precedent. If Major League Baseball is not transparent and specific with why it moved the game and what changes it wants to see/advocate for then the commissioner's office runs the risk of having every All-Star Game location vetted for some grievance. MLB needs to draw a line and clearly spell out why it moved from Atlanta -- no talking points, glossed-over, lawyer-approved releases, just clarity -- and why it chose Colorado so that from here we're not all rushing to see what the next location of the All-Star Game or draft or whatever event MLB will host might be questioned.
    I'll give you an example. We've all seen how past tweets are dredged up from a player's past to be used against them. And we see what that causes. Mining other players' social media for similar things to see if they might be dragged out into the open. That same vetting, digging, searching, etc. will go now if MLB isn't transparent.
    Your dice-roll analogy just makes me think Strat-O-Matic is basically D&D for baseball fans, which is pretty cool. Now I want a crossover where a player has to fight off an orc to make it from second to third.
    I cannot confirm or deny that my friends and I may have had such a game.
    Would a healthy David Price be of potential interest to the Cardinals if the Dodgers made him available including eating a lot of the remaining cash due him?
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