Of course, he wants a big contract. Wouldn't you? Anybody would. That's the idea. I don't have any issue with a player trying to play for a larger, better deal because that's how the game should work. It's a meritocracy and as a free agent a player actually gets a chance to make what the market will bear for him. Good on him. Swing away, Marcell. There is one key part of this, though, that is important to bring up. In the past month or so, Ozuna has talked about wanting to stay in St. Louis. He's told his agent that would be a conversation he'd like to pursue at some point before the season ends. He's open the notion. Can't say that was the case a year ago, on either side. The Cardinals, meanwhile, have a lot of directions they could go. Sure, one is keeping Ozuna and looking to trade Fowler. That would have to be explored if they do bring back Ozuna. The other option is extending an QO to Ozuna and see if he takes it. Not sure he would. But it's June. We have no idea what the next three months will bring for him. Either way, it's worth noting Ozuna's interest. He called the whole thing "a challenge" to have a good season and get the deal he wants.
I did, yes. Through the years, I've had a chance to see him with kids, to see him with a World Series trophy, to see him with his own children, to see him kid with Molina, to see him look up to Matheny, and to see him so furious with his swing that he glows like a nuclear reactor. He wears his emotions on his sleeve, and that's part of his strength.
I've seen them thrown around, too. He's a classic hot stock, IPO, catch him while he's hot performer. He's having an excellent year. He's got a few more years of control (free agent before 2023). The Tigers want to shed him for their rebuild and avoid paying him the big salary headed his way. OK, all signs point to a possible move. And he's lefthanded. I am not so quick to dismiss this season as a comet -- streaking off of his baseball card for one bright, shiny year and then receding back to his usual performance. This is a continuation of last year in many ways, and an improvement. His strikeout rate has climbed each of the past few years, and last year he significant reduced every way hitters got on base against him. In 2017, he allowed more hits than innings in the majors. He slashed that in 2018, and has improved on this season. I think he's an interesting candidate for a trade, but not the surefire, top-rotation guy that would really change this team. But maybe he's headed that way? Maybe. Can the Cardinals go for a maybe that hangs around for awhile -- or go trade for the now, who's gone at the end of the season. It's a good question. It does seem like now they veer toward the latter.
I don't think a trade at this point makes sense. No alternatives. You'd just be moving for moving and that doesn't seem like a wise thing to do. Altering the lineup makes a lot of sense.
Concerned. That is how they've approached the remainder of this season, candidly. What they get from Reyes in 2019 is a bonus that they are no longer banking on. What they expect from him in 2020 will be based entirely on what they see from him in the coming months. They don't have to make those decisions today, so they won't.
Since you asked, Willie McGee and the comfort Ozuna has felt this season being a little more like himself, and sensing that it's OK to be that way with this team, with this group of players. No kidding he wants a big contract. Again, wouldn't you? Just saying.
John Mozeliak signed Lance Berkman. Just FYI.
(Aside: I get emails and tweets and even questions in this chat that give Luhnow credit for moves that happened after he left and moves that were made when he wasn't even in the room before he left. It does seem like there is a disconnect between what fans remember each GM/Front Office exec did, and maybe that's a failing of the coverage? But then when I catalog some of the moves, just move by move, it seen as some kind of defense of the front office, when really I'm just trying to offer facts for people to make better arguments. Like this one: Mozeliak signed Berkman, Jocketty didn't. Or this one, Mozeliak was instrumental in setting up the current farm system and how it operates along with LaRocque, Vuch, Shildt, DeJohn, Tim Leveque (who doesn't get enough credit), and, yes, Luhnow. But, man, the retrofitted hagiography is something else. And if anyone can explain it to me, the floor is yours ...)
Fair point. It's worth me asking this question this week.
A big gaping hole in their lineup.
Nothing doing there. Awaiting word on why. At last check, there was still a hope of returning from the surgery, but a wonder on the timing. He's past the point now of when he wanted to be able to test the arm in a throwing program.
The Mets beat aside, this isn't the Wild Wild West. The Cards are pros. Though, if the Cardinals trade for Jason Vargas as their next starter, I'll get the message.
Oh boy. I did not poll everyone involved in the ovation and I usually try to avoid writing sentences like "the crowd left disappointed," "the crowd left exhilarated," because I know not everyone in the crowd is rooting for the Cardinals, so if the Cardinals win at Busch it's likely someone left disappointed. So, I try to keep that in mind. That said, I feel comfortable in saying that I would roughly estimate the number of people cheering for Pujols turning down the contract and not just cheering for Pujols were exactly, precisely zero. Yes, zero. I'm going with zero people did that.
Don't know. That hasn't been discussed at last check.
Yes, he's a possibility. When I've asked around about him, however, he has not been high up their list as preferred options. That's all.
I appreciate your honesty, Bruce.
That is not the blueprint, no.
It takes two to tango. They cannot compel another team to make a move when that team thinks it can use the pressure of deadline to extort and even better, bigger return.
He just won the Player of the Week award for the American League! It was just announced, and yet it did seem like he was riding sidecar to the main attraction. I've had a chance to see him play in person many times before, and I'm not going to tell you anything you haven't heard before. He's a force. He's capable of taking over games and the next moment could be a highlight. Watching him go first to third is something, let alone seeing him go over the wall to make a catch. And still he's not the best player I've ever see in person. That goes to Pujols. Peak Pujols is better than Today Trout.