The angst that _____________ (insert team name here)_______ fans felt a month ago is still there now. The market has not been good to salve fan angst. Not at all. Other than Yankee fans who can dream of the Judge Stanton tandem there really aren't that many teams that have done all that much this winter. The Cardinals stand out by acquiring the second-best bat that has moved so far this winter. Consider that for a moment. Your angst is legit and fan frustration is fair, but the Cardinals, to date, have added the best bat of the offseason who is not named Giancarlo Stanton. Seriously.
This is what interests me: The Cardinals had the prospect assets and the payroll room to attack this winter and leave it without any question on their roster. They could know their closer. They could know their fifth starter. They could invest in certainty and were positioned as well as any team in baseball to do so, and yet here they are nearing spring training and there is such a wide delta of possibilities for this team. The floor and ceiling of this team are far apart -- maybe more so than any team in recent memory. And that makes me think that the market has allowed them to wait this long, and that some kind of move to clear up that, to bring the floor closer to the ceiling to bring some certainty, is still to happen.
Would not be foolish at all. Whatever happens, Tyler Lyons should pitch and have a role on this team of some prominence.
Doesn't have to be either of them. Would definitely be sorted out in spring.
I don't know. Wish I did for you. But I don't.
Combination of both. And the fact that a few people they have offered such contracts to have said no. Price and Heyward both received offers longer than that from the Cardinals. The Cardinals were willing to take on a contract longer than that with Stanton. So, age of free agents certainly plays into it, and DeWitt has stressed that the team does not want the albatross deal, but that the team also needs to rethink how it views longterm deals -- baking in the fact that you get production in the early years of it that may make it possible to stomach what's called the cost of the out years.
It's worth noting at this point that the Cardinals are not alone. They have long had a preference to go shorter, even at a higher annual cost. And now you see other teams doing the same thing. That's part of what has slowed this market and look at the deals that have happened. They aren't long, not yet.
Nah. It just gives a salary cost certainty. But the Cardinals could do their own math -- have done their own math -- on what they expect Donaldson's salary to be for 2018 based on precedent. This would just put it stone, and the deal would be figured out from there. The Jays are not motivated sellers at this point. Again, they still believe they have a move or two in them that would make them a contender.
I'm not one to start plucking Hall of Famers from the Hall. They're in there. I don't think that is an honor that should be ripped away, for any reason. Once in, in. Immortality. That's just me. And actually that helps guide my hand as I vote. I have to be comfortable with my vote being the vote that puts a player in the Hall of Fame -- for good. The Hall is history. The Hall should reflect history. I am astonished that the Hall is so light on third baseman. That concerns me. That seems to indicate there hasn't been an appreciation for that position like there should be -- one that is a blend of defense and offense, and not just the brawn of first base. I was long bothered that Joe Gordon wasn't in the Hall of Fame. I didn't understand that at all. But, again, I don't think it's fair to start ushering players out, and thus I don't think in the terms you describe here in your question. I have no interest in rewriting the Hall, only improving how the vote is going now.
Morris was elected by a committee that was put together to get some action, to get some result, and he had momentum for election. I am an advocate of Trammell's election. I have said I would not have voted for Morris if I had a chance to do so on my ballot. But I don't fault those who do, just like I would hope they didn't fault me for voting for Scott Rolen.
To give some background here. Mike Claiborne, last night on KMOX, brought up the salient point of how rare it is for a team to get through a season with one closer always available when there is a save to be had, and how increasingly rare that is going to be with the aggressive use of the super-bullpen, like say Colorado is trying to put together or the postseason demands. He suggested that really every team has that second closer. I called it an "understudy." And that's what it is. Now, that understudy could come from a variety of places. I would suggest that both Trevor Rosenthal and Jason Motte served in that role the same years they became closers, and this past year the Cardinals set up Siegrist to be in that role and then had to improvise for a bit and found that Brebbia, Lyons, or Bowman could do it in a pinch. Salas was definitely in that role before he become the closer.
This year, that understudy is going to come from in-house. Gregerson and Lyons stand out this moment as the best options for the role -- the setup guy who closes when needed. Tuivailala has the stuff and could get the experience here to also pull that off. To earn that role. One argument for the Cardinals adding a closer before the start of the season is just that: It makes it clear that they have an understudy. Right now they have a group that could fill the ninth, that could share the ninth, and that group would look a lot sharper if they fell in line around the reliever who would solve the ninth.
Not yet on the team. That would be my guess. I hope to make that an educated guess in the coming days. That's a goal.
I'm good. Drive safe. Thanks for offering.
Goodness, me too! I'm not the youngun anymore.
(I'm not sure this is true for Gannett. I know some writers who have thrived at Gannett papers.)
We've seen a deal like that numerous times already this winter. Nicasio is an example. Chatwood is an example. Tommy Hunter is definitely an example. You could make an argument that Cozart is an example based on past contracts. Santana is an example, and that deal is an example from a team that thinks its window to start winning starts in year 2 of that deal. Closer to St. Louis, the Cardinals have had deals like this sprinkled throughout the past decade. Brad Penny and Jhonny Peralta are examples. And, actually, Carlos Beltran would be an example, too, though we can all agree that had some different circumstances.
They are both free agents. They both play baseball. The Cardinals have met with the agents for both players. And they are both still available at positions that the Cardinals could fill. Of those two, Morrison appears the better fit, and I'll be honest he's a player I've been trying to check around on to see if there's any traction of interest -- not rumor of interest. There was a chat with his agent because there are chats with all agents. But he's a fit better than other names I've heard slung around.
Years. Cost. Expected return on those years and cost.
Nope. It's still there. There are hundreds of questions. I'm speeding through them as best I can. I don't keep score on the name. Just look for the best in the window I've got.
Not those pitchers specifically, but definitely a starter of some type. That list of starters is still long and earlier in the chat I mentioned a couple names that wouldn't really tickle the headlines but would be a value add for the Cardinals and add some certainty to the roster that is missing now. Take a scan sometime through Cashner's career and see what he does and how that would fit at the back end of a rotation.
Is Lyons part of your candidates? If not, then him. But, yes, you've got the feel for the list. Gant is definitely in the conversation. Dakota Hudson, too. Austin Gomber should not be overlooked when making out the depth chart of starters, especially for what he just has constantly done as a starter and how the consistency would work in a cameo assignment.
Playoffs. Relievers are the new sluggers. As home runs have become plentiful then the value of them has gone down because teams can find them anywhere. Teams are leaning more than ever on relievers because starters are going shorter and because the postseason shows the power of a game-shortening bullpen, and because of that a bona fide ace reliever has value greater today than he did before, and teams are paying for that. They can thank Andrew Miller. They can thank Brett Cecil. They can thank any number of the middle relievers who are now making setup/closer salaries.
It's supply and demand. The supply of homers has gone up, the demand for relievers has, too.
Top third. No lower than 11-12, really. Could see an argument for it being snugly in the 7-9 range.