I hope not, but there won't be many free lunches anymore, relative to watching baseball. Try to ignore the gambling ads aspect of it, if it bothers you, but I know it will be hard.
When Carlson is ready for that, that's the lineup I like, too. But I like more the fact that Goldschmidt and Arenado, the best two hitters, will bat in every first inning by hitting 2-3.
Carpenter will go into the season as an extra man, which he knows. He will have to hit something to merit playing time but it's a double-edged sword because he is apt to get less playing time when the season starts than he is getting now. It sends a bad message to the team to release a popular player like Carpenter in spring training. The front office has to take this into the season but the decision-makers will keep an eye on what could be a sticky wicket issue. But veteran players generally aren't dumped on the basis of spring training stats. They deserve to be judged on what they're doing during the regular season although it would behoove Carpenter to get off to a good start. He does have versatility and he is a lefthanded batter, both of which the club needs.
Woodford, because he has options, could spend some time on the shuttle this year but because he can both start and relieve, he will be on a 14-man staff and maybe even a 13-man staff. He'll be around a lot this year.
Believe me, he is trying. Carpenter had a swung like this when he was hitting with power and for some average in years past, too. He is not ignoring the hitting coaches. But they can't swing the bat for him.
If two of the three Cardinals outfielders don't pick it up offensively, the team certainly will be looking for another hitter when mid-year rolls round. To make the Goldschmidt-Arenado 2-3 combination function, it is up to No 4 hitter DeJong to help to make it work. O'Neill could hit fourth but this is up to DeJong right now. Carlson could hit second and Goldy and Arenado could drop a spot each but I like it the way it is now. Molina belongs at 5 for 6 but not 4.
Of those three, Williams has the best chance because he is a lefthanded hitter and the Cardinals are short on those. The other two probably are destined for Memphis but they'll be back.
No need to use Hicks in back-to-back games just yet because there is plenty of firepower in the bullpen. Later in April or early in May, I could see it.
Reyes most often will appear in the eighth or ninth. At max, he would go two innings but I see him going one early in the season.
Since there was no minor league season last year, the best thing for both young pitchers is to pile up innings in the minors so that one or both might be able to help later in the year.
I wouldn't play him over 130 games. Molina, of course, may have other ideas.
The Mikolas signing has turned out poorly but we still have three more years to judge it. I have concern about the starting pitching because Martinez is No. 3 right now. I have hope for Kim but we don't have any read on how the hitters will adjust because he pitched so little this spring.
I'm sure Dunc is on Tony's speed dial. I think the White Sox can be the best team in the American League now that they've got a closer in Hendriks. Lynn will make 30 to 35 starts for any manager but he does like Tony.
The best way to speed up the game is to have pitchers throw strike one. And then strike two. And then have the hitters put the ball in play somewhere.
Essentially, yes. He doesn't have to be a star but he has to be a contributor in the lineup on a consistent basis. He still is the outfielder with the most power potential and he may be able to hit for a decent average. I do not see the club trying to trade him. Their need for starting pitching may not be as severe when Kim and Mikolas return.
I will say that some of Bader's work on improving his offense doesn't always translate into games.
The young pitchers need to pitch, it's as simple as that, and some of those innings aren't going to be available in the major leagues. At least not now. If the veterans falter and the younger pitchers are doing well in the minors, then you consider other options and bring one or some up. But, yes, veterans always will get the first crack because they've done it.