Greetings. Back from the road trip out west and positioned already at the ballpark to do some chatting, some reporting, and some TVing. Time to fill the hopper with questions. Changes have been happening for the Cardinals --- signaling to me a clear message that this group was given a chance and now the front office wants production. We will see where this leads. Bet you have some questions about it ...
Absolutely. It appears like that audit is going on now. It's why Pham is starting. It's why changes have happened and will continue to happen for the bullpen. As mentioned in a previous chat, Adams seemed like a prelude not an isolated roster change. There is an impatience around this team.
At this point they are resolutely mediocre.
Both. If you're talking in the next four- to six-weeks or so. Trade talks will be on the horizon.
Going to do a hit here in about 90 seconds on MLB Network. Tune in.
Interesting question. Yes. What we see in the division is two teams who intend to contend and they both have serious gaps. For the Cubs, it's pitching. For the Cardinals, it's offense. The Cubs know they'll need innings from a starter, they'll need another arm, and they could try to beat the market by going for their preferred add earlier, if the other team is willing. For the Cardinals, their need is well known and it's going to take a player being available (Hosmer, Donaldson, TBD) to get a sense of the market, then pounce. More pitching is likely to be available than hitting this year. Milwaukee could surprise everyone by becoming a NOW team, though I bet they are more disciplined than that. An early, costly move for them would be a shock.
This has been discussed, internally.
There is expected to be an update on Wong today, or at least more clarity on what he's dealing with. He scheduled for an MRI and a battery of exams. That info make actually break here on the chat, as I'm at the ballpark and will attempt to bring you details as they emerge, just about everything.
DeJong fits at second and at third. He's capable of handling both, and scouts I've spoken to are split on where he fits best. I get the sense that the ones who say third is his best position are seeing him move in that direction during his career in the majors and that his bat will fit there.
That would likely depend on two things. Let's look at the hypothetical. First, the Cardinals would have to choose to cut ties with him -- and that isn't guaranteed. The franchise could look for him another role, move him into a spot elsewhere in the organization, and they could also position that as mutually agreeable. The days of asking Matheny if he enjoys managing are over, but after his first two seasons that was a question I made sure to ask because there was a time he wasn't sure about what all the responsibilities would be like. Also, remember that chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. has stressed continuity as a trait of his business model, and he's backed that by trying to keep people -- if not in their exact place, then in the organization.
Second, what teams with ties to Matheny have a spot open. Wouldn't be a shock at all, judging from conversations I've had with people, if Milwaukee or San Francisco brought him over for an interview, if they had their jobs open. Those jobs are not likely to be open any time soon.
He was taking a bunch of swings in the cage, and though he doesn't recall the exact event, he believes he may have hyperextended it at one point. He first felt the pain on the on-deck circle more than week ago, and then it has flared since.
Sure. The same ones the chat is filled with questions about when they're going to appear, or return.
An excellent question. He's not injured. He is not a new father. And he was not placed on the bereavement list. Those are the Cardinals three options that I could find when it comes to clearing a spot -- DL, paternity leave, bereavement. I tried to find out if there was another way for the Cardinals to clear a spot -- family emergency? -- and have been unsuccessful. All indications are that the team has been, too. And so they play with a short bench. Again. Exhibit 312.
Fear isn't really something GMs do. I have no idea why fear would even enter into a decision.
How about it? Makes a lot of sense.
No, except the Cardinals are committed to Gyorko as the starter at third base, and a lot like the time we saw Sierra in the corner and Fowler in center, Matheny, like every other manager in the majors, is going to give deference to the veteran, the everyday starter, when there is a part-time player in the mix.
It is entirely possible. For the past year or so I've been wondering when all of the Twitter anger and chat angst was going to manifest in action where it counts -- buying tickets, filling seats. I see a lot of anger on various social media platforms and many of them follow a predictable pattern: demand accountability from media, blame the easiest target du jour (Jon Jay this week, Jonathan Broxton the next), blame the coaches/front office, never ever harm the sainted hair of the chosen members of the roster, and then, when pressed on why the person buys tickets and doesn't take a financial stand, watch for the walk-back.
Look, the devotion and the commitment is part of what makes the Cardinals the Cardinals. The fans fondness and world-famous support of the team is what makes this chat possible. We all know that. I get that. But as fans you do have a way to voice your displeasure, and it's not just in the echo chamber of Twitter or in the anonymity of this chat. It's with ticket sales. So, if there are empty seats, the team will take note.
They did at the end of last season. Oh, did they.
Ozuna would be a fit, yep. The Cardinals could move Jedd around to make room, especially with the versatility of other players, like Carpenter. They are in a position to look at several positions -- well, almost any position in the infield for a trade, if they wanted.
Exactly. They're banking on 3.4 million. But, buying tickets is the biggest part yet not the only part. No shows are something that get their attention. That's food sales and others that are important.
Carlos Martinez, Alex Reyes .. Molina, Fowler, Wainwright with no-trade clauses.
It would pillage the farm system. That would be out of character, and with the players likely available it would also create a redundancy that doesn't help. Without knowing the exact names of who you're thinking about, I would suggest that one move like that this season would help the team. A second move would only leave it depleted and keep them from future moves.