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

  • Guess it depends on what the trade deadline looks like, the Cardinals' need, the available alternatives, the Dodgers' ask -- there are more ifs, ifs, ifs, here than other moves the Cardinals would look to make. I don't see them seeking out this deal.
    Thanks for the explanation on the hot hand question. So a follow-up on "team streakiness." When we see, say, the Cards scoring 10 runs in a game sandwiched by a couple of shutouts and losing the series, should we write that off, statistically, as just the "slings and arrows" of the season (if we can combine Shakespeare and statistics) or are the higher ups asking whether there is something wrong with the approach that leads to the shutout days and the explosive routs?
    Some of it can be dismissed as the pitcher they're facing. Scherzer shutting out the Cardinals isn't exactly an outlier. He shuts out a lot of teams. What you look for the traits that make the Cardinals less consistent, what undermines their office. Hint: Depth and strikeouts. If a lineup tends to go bonkers one day and then quiet the next -- take a look at the walks. When they went bonkers did they have a bunch of walks to seed the bases and then crooked numbers to go with them. And then went they went quiet -- how many walks did they have?
    To me, the question about the Cardinals wasn't game to game. It was inning to inning. They went a 40-inning stretch where they scored in only three of them. When things went right they went really right and off they had a six-running, sent 11 batters to the plate, and capitalized on walks, etc. When things went wrong, they had rallies fizzle with strikeouts, lack of walks, no sustained depth to the lineup. It was either the top of the order generating the chance, or nothing else. That's what you see from an offense that runs hot and cold -- it has too many speedbumps in it. And needs everything to go right or help to have the bursts of offense. That was the question facing the Cardinals.
    I’ve asked some relevant thought provoking question’s today. That have been ignored . Am I just egg salad today?🙁
    There are almost 200 questions in here. The chat scrolls them by as they arrive, and I do my best to see what I can. Right now there are two questions out of the 203 that I can read. And now they're gone because three more questions arrive. And one long one. So I only see it. I'm doing the best I can to get a selection of the questions.
    This week, Tom Verducci in SI chronicles Ryan Sherriff's personal struggles. The Cardinals' issues - on and off the field - are well-documented. Yet, Sherriff articulates a previously-undisclosed one: a profound lack of empathy, which is, either, irrelevant or, in fact, part of the problem.

    When the Cardinals released him after his Tommy John surgery, Sherriff says: "I gave everything in my power to get to the big leagues for that organization. I have no words to describe it. Just to get released like that shattered me."

    Of the Tampa Bay Rays, who signed him after the Cardinals released him, Sherriff says:
    "Honestly, I've only been in two organizations but the Rays have to be the best. They have the best farm system, the best support, the best analytics."

    When the club ghosted Kolten Wong by unceremoniously releasing him, Wong said, "It took me a little bit to kind of get my head around the whole thing." In Wong's case, once is an incident; in Sheriff's, it looks more like a problem.

    For all our much-vaunted "Cardinal Way," the club emphasizes player development at the expense of communication between club and players. Then again, if you spend all your time issuing dictates, there's prob not much time left over to listen.

    As Sherriff illustrates, in great organizations, support is as integral as analytics, each is part of a greater whole. In the Cardinals' case, it seems like there's a larger, more a structural problem, a cognitive blind-spot that speaks volumes about about how this club operates.

    What say you?
    I spoke to Sherriff in October, in Texas, and he was candid about the grass being greener as well: 

    For former Cardinals reliever Sherriff, Tampa Bay's interest, opportunity showed 'grass can be greener'

    STLtoday.comTwo years after his sudden release by the Cardinals in the midst of rehabbing from elbow surgery, Sherriff made his World Series debut with a scoreless inning for Rays.
    Interesting answer to the Carp question earlier considering they let Waino and Yadi hanging for most of the postseason before re-signing them. What changed?
    A pandemic. Free agency. Carpenter approached them about the extension. Heck, it's the same thing that Molina and Wainwright did years before. It was Wainwright who approached the Cardinals about going to a one-year deal heavy on incentives for the 2019 season. It was Molina and his representative that went to the Cardinals and tried to get a conversation going on an extension a year before his deal was up and that led to the three-year, $60-million deal he signed on the eve of opening day. The examples you are asking about came after a shortened year, while the team was trying to trade for Arenado, and with two players who had already done the same thing Carpenter did -- just earlier in their careers, at about the same age Carpenter did it.
    A frequent subject on STL radio is the possibility of dealing for Max Scherzer at the deadline in the event that the Nats are unlikely to make the playoffs. I'm a lifelong Cards fan who lives in D.C. and thus also follows the Nats and attends Nats game. Let me just say this: There is no way that the Lerners are dealing Scherzer this year. During Bryce Harper's last year in D.C., Mike Rizzo had an excellent deadline deal in place to send Harper to the Astros and it was nixed by the Lerners. They just don't like the look of selling at the deadline, regardless of how much sense it makes. You heard it hear first....
  • Actually, I heard it too from the Washington Post's excellent baseball writer who outlined all the things that would have to happen for that deal to take place: 

    Best Podcast in Baseball 9.02: Natitude to the Max - Best Podcast in Baseball -

    The Washington Nationals arrived in St. Louis for the first of six games in 10 days against the Cardinals and, for the first time, had the lineup they imagined during the offseason. How long will they keep it together? That question resonates in St. Louis not just because the Cardinals might be shopping for a starting pitcher (ahem, Max Scherzer) but because the Cardinals and Nationals have taken such different routes to building their teams, to correct offensive issues, to contend in a National League where neither of them are considered a favorite in the standings. Washington Post Nationals beat writer Jesse Dougherty, author of "Buzzsaw", joins St. Louis Post-Dispatch baseball writer Derrick Goold to discuss the Nationals upgrades and philosophies, St. Louis native Scherzer's next step, and how Washington's scouts unplugged the Cardinals' offense in 2019 and showed other teams how to do it, too. The Best Podcast in Baseball, sponsored by Closets by Design of St. Louis, is a production of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,, and Derrick Goold.
    How would describe Jordan Hicks actual role right now heading into week 5 of this season?
    Bridge. He's something of a setup pitcher in close games, and he'll close out and finish games with bigger leads. He's also getting stretched into a two-inning role, which I find fascinating. One of the reasons is because of what we discussed earlier in the chat -- he needs the innings to get the feel for pitches.
    You haven't heard? I'm always, resolutely, relentlessly serious.
    If the Stros stumble would Grienke be an option the Cards would consider? He hasn’t been too keen on playing here in the past, correct?
    That is correct. He has not wanted to pitch here in the past. He has said as much, and one of the reason is because of the attention and scrutiny on the team. And he's been critical of the Cardinals' ... well, what's the word -- not act, or attitude. Posturing is probably the right word. Yeah, posturing. He was the one who called Chris Carpenter "phony," if you remember. That went over like you'd expect.  
    I think he'd be a fascinating addition.
    Here's one putting the cart WAY before the horse. Let's say the team is just totally mediocre this year. I'm thinking ~83 wins, contends, but misses the playoffs in the end. Does that increase the chance Arenado pulls the trigger on the opt-out, assuming his numbers are Arenado-like at the end of the year? Alternatively, is he more likely to give it a couple years to see how things play out?
    I have no idea, honestly. I'm sorry. Too many hypotheticals. I doubt if you asked him, he would even have an answer for you.
  • With whatever you know personally about Carp: is he getting close to announcing he is retiring vs the Cards releasing him?
    Neither of these things appear on the horizon. There's been no indication from either side that this is a destination on their mind.
    The Brisich resignation just emphasizes to me how remarkable the timing of everything Nolan Arenado trade really was. Cardinals (while yes really putting in a bunch of work, due diligence, etc) really lucked out that it was that baseball star, with that Org, with that GM at the helm that stayed around juuust long enough to see the trade through then step away not a quarter of the way through the season... Yeesh, if I’m a Rockies fan I am some unholy combination of happy and enraged with today’s news.
    An interesting element of this to me is how similar it is what the Cardinals learned from their talks with Miami about the outfielders. Harken back to them. The Cardinals were eager to get a deal done, felt they had to get a deal for one of the outfielders, and didn't want to be left without a bat when the music stopped. They weren't convinced they could wait and wait and wait to see if Yelich would possibly be traded, so instead of being focused on one outfielder to get -- like Milwaukee was -- and willing to be left without an outfielder, the Cardinals made the deal for the outfield made available. First, it was Stanton. Then it was Ozuna. 
    Now, fast forward a few years, and the Cardinals have long wanted to trade for/sign Arenado, and he was the focus and they were willing to wait and wait and wait for that trade to happen, and they risked not getting a trade done at all. That was the reality. That was something Mozeliak spoke with me about -- the risk of not ending up with anyone and how the fan base would respond was worth the patience and reward of getting Arenado.
    I find that contrast to be more than coincidental. 
    If you don't think that Carp is head for either retirement or release, then how do you interpret the next step if he doesn't improve given Mo's comments?
    The next step -- the immediate next step -- is not much playing time for Carpenter. That's what he was talking about. That's what Mozeliak mapped out. That's what we knew. O'Neill was going to return and play a lot. That's less time in the outfield for Edman. That's less time in the lineup for Carpenter. Now they can also look differently at his production because they're not asking him to bat in the middle of the order. He's a bat off the bench. That's the situation that is present, and on the horizon.
    What is your take from Mozeliak’s comments about Carp last Friday? Am I wrong in inferring that Mo may question Carp’s willingness/ability to change his swing approach or am I reading something into this that isn’t there? Wondering if Mo feels Carp hasn’t done enough to change?
    He said as much, yes. He questioned whether there was an ability to change after so many years of trying. I asked him if it's up to the coaching staff to offer a menu of possible solutions and if they shared some of the accountability for what has happened -- and Mozeliak absolved them of any of it. He veered back to the player. It was telling.
    Have the last two years seriously damaged Matt Carpenter's chance for the St.Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame?
  • That's for the fans to decide. It depends on what side of the fan base votes. If it's up to the portion of the fan base that is loudest on Twitter, we have an idea how that will go.
    If Williams and O’Neil aren’t producing at an acceptable level at, say the all-star break, would Nolan Gorman be the next man up?
    Not necessarily. Nolan Gorman does not have an at-bat above Class A. He does not have an inning at second base in a regular-season game. He has not had consistent at-bats or playing time against the kind if pitchers he'd see in the majors. He's a talented hitter, with a lot of upside, but that takes development, too. He's not coming to the majors to sit on the bench, and he's not the fix at cleanup.
    Is Alex Reyes opening any eyes wider to start a new way of seeing him being both the closer in the now and for the longer haul including beyond 2021?
    There is always that possibility. The best way to keep a job is to have it.
    Last nutty idea: how about no DH and no pitcher hitting, just an eight man lineup? Failing that, what do you think of the notion of linking the DH with the starting pitcher?
    I like the symmetry of baseball rolling in threes. Three outs to a half inning. Three strikes to an at-bat. Lineup is a multiple of three. 
    I think the DH being linked to the pitcher is a fascinating and welcome twist.
    Derrick. My heart wants Carpenter on the team but my head says he is waste of spot. I like the current make up other than i want Nogowski back as soon as he heals. Is there a time frame for him?
    There is not. Given that he was on the active roster for more than a week with the bruise and he had at-bats during that time, it sure seems like this is a move to get him a stretch of playing time and grip strength back and they won't designate a timetable because it will be based on their need as much as anything.
  • I believe MO and Bridich are tight no? Any chance Jeff comes over and steps into the FO or involved the talent acquisition dept. Would love to see you interview him. Fire emoji...
    I never got that sense, no, not with Bridich. Bridich came out of the commissioner's office and has some professional relationships with Cardinals execs who he worked with there or who he had contact with. I would call Cashman and Mozeliak tight. If we're looking for other POBOs or GMs that he spends time with, or communicates with often. 
    I would welcome the chance to interview him. I would welcome the chance to refute the comments he made about baseball writers and how disappointing they were given the people who cover his team. It showed a purposeful lack of awareness of the professionals he might have talked to on a daily basis.
    I don't expect him to want to talk to me. 
    Apparently Tatis Jr.’s 2 HR game vs LA on 4/23 was on the same date as Tatis Sr.’s 2 grand slam game for the Cardinals.
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