Bigger. Without the rigidity of adding on the muscle. He's moving well. Actually, I've seen him hit more than I've seen him in the field. He did have a great catch about 3/4 of the way up the line in left center field while taking fielding practice as other prospects hit. That was an impressive over the shoulder, back to the plate catch. He's grown into his swing.
Going into the 2013 season, my first with the current title at the paper, the story all spring was whether Pete Kozma would hit enough to keep his glove in the lineup as the Cardinals' everyday shortstop. We wrote a lot about that. We talked a lot about it. We asked a lot about that. As you can imagine, Kozma was asked to talk a lot about it. The Cardinals opened the season in Arizona, and in his second game Kozma hit his one home run of the season. Not in the box score is the ball he fouled back right at my computer immediately before that. The ball zipped into the press box right to where I was sitting and clattered around there. Have you seen The Natural? I just wasn't drawing a cartoon at the time ...
It's incomplete at this time because the Cardinals are still waiting on word from MLB re: Justin Williams. Notable players who are out of options are Daniel Ponce de Leon and Edmundo Sosa. Ponce de Leon ran out this past year as he went back and forth from the alternate-site roster to the major-league roster without really ever leaving the team. Those are the notable names, along with Williams if he is not granted a fourth option year.
They need to. They say they will. They say they want to. It's not clear who that backup will be if it's not Sosa. It could be Edman at times, if that's when Carpenter plays second base. But that has only been talked about briefly by the team. As of right now, due to the options and his ability to play the position, Sosa is best positioned to alleviate some of that workload, and the Cardinals, again, say they want, say they need to, and we'll see how much that talking becomes action.
A one-year deal with a clear opening in the rotation would do it. I've tried to be consistent with this and maintained that the Lohse-like signing is in place here. Keep that in mind as you now keep an eagle eye out for the Mikolas schedule, and Kim's next throw.
OK. Sometimes I'm just trying to track down an interview for a future or pressing story. That has happened today. The Cardinals had some Zooms going on with players like Tommy Parsons and Andrew Miller, but I had to step aside from them too to track down an explanation on a rules/roster situation.
John Gant is currently positioned as that pitcher.
It would be really hard for him to get to those PAs. Only four times in his eight full seasons in the majors has he had enough plate appearances to vest that option. The math is not on his side.
Keith Hernandez is overdue. But these candidates are for the fans to choose, not the writers or any of the other voters. This Hall has a vote for the fans, and that's great. I think it's really important that the fans have their say especially when I hear so much about the choices that fans would make for the National Baseball Hall of Fame. It's great that the Cardinals give the key to Clark Street's Hall to the fans.
Mike Mayers is the one that got away, eh? He's done well for Angels.
There is that chance until opening day arrives and rosters are set, yes.
Carpenter, Molina, Wainwright at the standard-bearers. But let's be honest -- many of these players get to the big-league clubhouse because they're ferocious competitors. They don't always wear it on their sleeve or scream it from the mound, but they are competitive. Jeff Suppan was competitive. Matt Holliday was ready to compete at anything. Kyle Lohse, Jedd Gyorko, Todd Wellemeyer, Gary Bennett, Pat Neshek -- they would all find some way to compete if they could. John Gant is like that, too. Skip Schumaker was ultra competitive. It's almost like if a player has gotten to the majors he's got be among the best competitors one some team he's played at somewhere.
Fine. He was at 95 mph consistently.
No more than they've moved toward him.
Don't know yet. Haven't seen a velocity readout on him. They did have a Trackman going for his velocity today, so we'll hear more about that at some point. To the eye, he hasn't lacked for any sizzle. The catcher who warmed up with him today sure seemed to be favoring a tenderized hand, shaking it out as he went to the field.
That is his hope, yes. The running game vanished for a few reasons. 1) Like you mentioned, there was a conscious effort to pull back for injury concerns. 2) That was influenced and even heightened by the team coming back from the COVID-19 outbreak. 3) To have a running game, it would help to be on base more.
This past winter. So, if he has a strong season, this coming November.
This has perplexed some of us around the team, too. He pitched well for them. Was a good depth fit. So what's the deal? Well, there are two likely reasons why they haven't made this move yet: First, they added a pitcher like Kaminsky to the roster in Austin Warner. Second, a player with options is going to be more appealing for a move/position like that even on a minor-league deal. If the Cardinals have a need for a Kaminsky-like in the majors then Kaminsky would be added to the roster -- but not have the option of going back to the minors. A player who could go back to the minors without being lost to waivers or allowed to be a free agent has value in a depth spot like that. Kaminsky would help several teams in the majors, and deserves that chance.