Cardinals chat with Derrick Goold

Cardinals chat with Derrick Goold

Bring your Cardinals questions and comments, and talk to Post-Dispatch baseball writer Derrick Goold in a live chat at 1 p.m. Monday..




    To be fair, the Cardinals have made calls to other teams -- many other teams -- and their description at this point is there isn't urgency on either side to move on a deal. So, they're in it too. But as the shopper it could be that they aren't interested in the current price, not that they aren't interested at all or don't see the benefit of one more month with a new player vs. not having that player in July.
    Like many others in STL (although maybe not in this chat) I was too glued in to the Blues' run to the Cup to focus on the day in, day out of the Cards until recently. I'm a believer that (all things being equal) run differential is a better predictor of the future than a team's W-L record. I look at the run differentials in the Central and find (from best to worst) : Cubs: +59, Reds: +48, Cards: +15, Brewers: -1 and Pirates: -72. To me this indicates two things. One, the Cubs are going to distance themselves from the pack at some point. Two, the Reds are better than their record indicates and, by extension, a wild card contender.

    Agree with either or both of these or is my belief in run differential misplaced?
    I, too, like run differential as a measure of true performance. It has been a reliable indicator of what a team is capable of doing -- as the season plays out. When in doubt, go with the run differential as the best indicator. The standings tell you where a team is and what a team is today, and run differential hints at where they could be going, especially this late in the season. Good read on the Reds. The Cardinals and Brewers are in the same spot, truthfully. Don't see a huge gap there. Pirates are in trouble. No surprise there. I picked the Cubs to win the division, but I don't see them pulling away. Their run differential is strong, but not stronger than the Reds really. And the Cubs pitching is still soft. We will see how Kimbrel adds to that. Can say the same thing about the Cardinals.
    How concerning must it be to the Cardinals' front office that their fans aren't voting for anybody in the all-star game? Isn't that message clear? i.e. "these players don't excite us"
    It should be something that they notice. Absolutely. And they should take a look at what the don't do to promote the players. I think it's one of the weirdest things about these Cardinals. The Brewers, the Royals, these teams motivate the voters, they get the voters going, they generate enthusiasm for the voters. The Cardinals definitely promote a team more than individuals, and it does seem like Cardinal Nation is not a particularly motivated voting group since ballots were removed from the ballpark. There could be myriad reasons why -- and exciting personalities is part of it. It's a riddle, Homer. Truly. But it's one that does reveal important truths about this team and its relationship with the fan base. They're selling tickets. They're getting ratings. They're packing the ballpark. But -- no votes. I think there's an enthusiasm gap not just between the team and the fans but between segments of the fanbase.
    Giants seem to have a lot of what the Cards need (Bumgarner, Smith, Watson, etc.). Do you think Kevin Pillar would be an option if Bader continues to struggle? Thanks.
    Wouldn't rule that out. Wouldn't rule out the Cardinals looking at CF options.
    If it takes two to tango wouldn’t the giants be the ones to dance with since it’s no surprise they seem interested in trading madbum. Is the cost too high or is it the fact that he doesn’t want to come to stlouis?
  • Who said he doesn't want to come to St. Louis? I haven't heard that from him.
    If the Cardinals are unable to acquire a top-end starter, what’s their next best acquisition? Does another 3 or 4 type starter really improve the rotation, or just change the name in the box score?
    Had a conversation this past week with a baseball official from another team, and we were talking about this scenario. The answer that intrigued him as a way to boost the team without that high-end move is to do exactly like you describe -- find a constant quality start plugger. Get that guy. Go out find a 4.50 ERA guy who is going to give you the 4.50 ERA and six innings and that's what he does every five days and you know it. Jeff Suppan, who was better than that description, came up as the kind of pitcher that the Cardinals could add to improve the rotation without the trade being some high Q-rating pitcher. I see the benefit. Doesn't have the sizzle.
    Do the Cards regret not signing Michael Brantley?
    I always thought Josh Reddick was the one they missed on.
    I thought St. Louis was on madbum no trade list?
    According to reports from Ken Rosenthal and others St. Louis is on his no-trade list, yes. That doesn't mean he doesn't like St. Louis. That doesn't mean he won't come to St. Louis. No-trade protection can be used as leverage. Justin Verlander had a no-trade clause that included Houston and he had resisted moves to the Astros. He still went. Giancarlo Stanton had a no-trade clause and he used it to reject San Francisco and the Cardinals, but didn't mind taking a deal to the Yankees. No-trade clauses are all about leverage, not personal opinion. Heck, not too long ago you saw players always put the Yankees on their no-trade clause -- not because they didn't want to go there, they just knew that they could maybe get the big-wallet Yankees to sweeten their reason for going, that's all. Business.
    Peak Pujols > Peak Trout? You have to offer more to this one, because while savvy, Pujols was speed deficient and had a bum arm most of his time at first base (though the throw to 3rd to nab Utley was beyond savvy, it was inspired). Is Pujols's bat that far ahead of Trout? Something else?
    Let's find out together. Give me a moment to do some research to illustrate and either prove my assertion or see it crumble beneath the weight of the stats.
  • Trout reached the majors swifter than Pujols, so comparing them at their totals through age 27 season is a little misleading in that regard, though not by much. Instead, here's what I did: I went with a strong five year block that would include their MVP seasons and their current best. Trout's five seasons leading into this one, and Pujols' five years through his peak.
     
    Mike Trout, 2014-18: 729 games, .303/.422/.588, 1.010 OPS, 179 OPS+, 178 HR, 452 RBIs, 535 runs, and 103 steals. That's all good for a 44.2 WAR.
     
    Albert Pujols, 2005-09: 770 games, .334/.439/.631, 1.070 OPS, 176 OPS+, 206 HR, 608 RBIs, 571 runs, and 48 stolen bases. That's all good for a 44.6 WAR.
     
    It's Peak Pujols by a nose, and we can certainly debate the weight of the positions they play. Look, saying Peak Pujols is better than Today Trout is not some slight on Trout. It's like saying 1927 Babe Ruth is better than 1948 Stan Musial. They're both great.
    The team has always promoted the fans and attendance has been good for awhile, but it seems like when the team is simply better and has better players that the fans WILL vote for them.
    Maybe. The last time the Cardinals had an elected starter for the All-Star Game he was ... wait for it ... Jhonny Peralta. Yep, in 2015, the Cardinals had Matt Holliday and Peralta elected to the starting spots. That was a 100-win team, and your argument would fit because it was also the last time the Cardinals were in the playoffs. Maybe that's what does it. Maybe voting is prompted by the lingering view of what the team/player did this past year. Still bet there's something about no ballots at the ballpark.
    Nitpicking to be sure, but games indicate Trout has 1/4 of a season less and if prime years would assume numbers added would then push him to the line by a nose? Regardless Both great players.
    But he didn't play those games. So, I cannot count them. Durability does matter.
    Ozuna vs DeJong would be an interesting all-star case for Manfred, right? Ozuna has the counting, traditional stats and DeJong has the advanced stats (9th in NL in bWAR)
    Absolutely. Great point. To be a fly on the wall for that debate. Ozuna might get the nod because there are three outfield spots, vs. DeJong getting bumped behind two other, three other shortstops.
    Say the Cards don't make the playoffs. What's the blueprint to make it in 2020 with Ozuna possibly gone, Reyes/Martinez questions marks, the veteran core getting a year older, and Fowler still being under contract?
    As of June 24, 2019, I don't know. They don't either. Except that changes are a must. So we'll all get to find out together if it happens.
  • I know you can’t blame Trout for team around him- but it just seems the tiebreaker has to be rings when it comes to comparison- has to be something about lifting those around you- and least it seems there should be
    If a player is constantly on a losing team then does he take the heat for lowering the others around him? I think the "lifting others" is a nice thought, and there might be something to it, but I would believe it if we talked about players who lift others around him to a .500 record when they should be awful, awful, awful, because too often we're adding this description to a player who has won a lot or a championship, not before he does.
    Heard Matt Holliday over the weekend up for playing with a team this weekend. Why don't the Cards pick him up? I'm sure he could hit better (and avoid the shift) like a .219 hitting Carpenter!
    I've seen it all in this chat. Now you want Matt Holliday to go back to his original position, third.
    Hi Derrick. I love the chats and look forward to them each week ( especially in the abyss of the offseason). I feel very uneasy about signing a 4.50 3-4 starter for 2 reasons : Cards haven't had a losing streak stopper for a while and Mike Leake ......
    Understood. Still, there's a value in consistency. It would be a trade, too.
    Pham... Mercado... Brantley... Reddick...

    Thank goodness the angry revisionists don't remember when all the second tier baseball sites were pumping out "Charlie Blackmon to the Cards" rumors like crazy in 2016, right before Fowler was signed.
    Thanks for calling me second tier. Moving on up! Also, that wasn't the same winter. Fowler was the D.C. winter meetings. The talks with Colorado re: Blackmon were the Nashville winter meetings. The Cardinals, in D.C., attempted to do a deal for Adam Eaton with the White Sox. Washington went way over what the Cardinals thought was the market to get Eaton, and they walked out of that meeting stunned, ready to pivot, and realizing that they were going to have to up their bidding on Fowler.
    Rick Hummel made a comment about Cardinals fans being too honest to vote for some of the Cardinals to the All-Star team, and I think there’s actually something to that. I’ll vote for Paul DeJong, because arguably, he’s deserving (maybe not definitely deserving, but arguably deserving). I can’t argue that Matt Carpenter is deserving this season, so I’m not voting for him. That process can be a reflection on the fan base as well. I’ve seen comments about Cardinals not getting enough votes to be high on the list, I’ve not seen anyone argue any of them actually DESERVED to be higher on the list.
  • I think Hummel makes a great point. It speaks to the fan base. That also has to be a factor, absolutely.
    I don't think the Cards' farm system is all that great so if that is one of your bases for defending Mozeliak, I really don't get it. I think the PD and Cards' fans in general over-rate the system...
    John, what are you basing your rankings on? I'd like to hear the argument if you could submit it to the chat. The Cardinals have not had the success churning out the difference-making position players from the minors, but then along comes Paul DeJong, who would count as an impact position player, and he followed Aledmys Diaz who had a record-setting rookie year. They are looking for that breakout outfielder for sure, and have had depth, but not really been able to have the break-loose star, other than Tommy Pham's one season. Pitching, however, pitching is where they have shined, especially picking as low as they have in the draft -- and going one entire season without a first-round pick. Take a moment to look at the pitchers the Cardinals have drafted from 2007 to present, especially compared to other teams in the division. Here is the performance, rated by WAR, the Cardinals and other NL Central teams have received DIRECTLY from first-round pitchers they drafted from 2007 to now:
     
    Cardinals 29.7
    Cubs 0.3
    Pittsburgh 20.0
    Cincinnati 10.4
    Milwaukee 0.8
     
    The Cubs and Brewers have received less than 1.0 WAR each in ALL OF THOSE FIRST ROUNDS combined.
     
    And that WAR total for the Cardinals doesn't include flipping Clayton Mortensen as part of the deal for Matt Holliday, or sending Weaver to Arizona for Goldschmidt, or turning Shelby Miller and Tyrell Jenkins into Heyward, let alone considering a move like Zack Cox for Edward Mujica. Again, I don't know what you're basing your rankings on. The Post-Dispatch doesn't do organization rankings for all 30 teams, but I do turn to Baseball America. The Cardinals were rated No. 1 about six years ago, and they've been in the top half of the rankings for a majority of the past 10 years.
    Are we seeing a classic example of a older player's skills deteriorating before our eyes in Carpenter?
    That's possible. It always is. A player in his 30s -- there's going to be a decline. He's struggled against the fastball as the metrics show, and that could mean that he's trying to cheat to speed up and that leaves him exposed on the off-speed pitch. I still get the sense there's something else going on here and we're seeing a hitter who is trying to get back to using all fields.
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