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..




    Multiple reasons, but let's start with O'Neill not being healthy and then also not being in the majors. Let's continue with saying that Wong doesn't need to platoon. He can play everyday. Jose Martinez getting regular at-bats makes a lot of sense, yes. And when you ask why aren't you seeing more of that, I guess I'd suggest you are. There was a good month there where Bader/Fowler did share center field so that Martinez could get in there, and we've seen moments of that recently, too.
    And the Pham trade didn't have anything to do with his outspoken comments about the FO?
    In spring training? It took them four months to reach the front office? There was definitely a sense on both sides about getting a change of scenery -- Cardinals in center, Pham with a new team. And if it had to do with his comments then it would have been more recent comments, or more recent frustration than a story that burned bright and burned out soon after. And remember, a player with a .900 OPS can probably do and say things a little differently than a player with a .750 OPS. Clubhouses tend to respond differently to players depending on past performance and current performance, not just personality -- or some flashy quotes.
    Mr. Goold, seems to me a lot of our pitchers could pitch later into games if they just pitched to contact instead of trying to strike everyone out. In John Tudors 12 years of ball, only 5 of those years did he ever strike out 100+ batters. Pitch to contact for crying out loud.
    Dakota Hudson brought this up yesterday in Queens. He said the only swing and miss that matters is with a two-strike count, so why not try to get him out before you get there.
    I saw your pics posted about the Field of Dreams, I read your chat response about you and your dad and you and your son, did your write Father's Day article about the visit?
    Probably not, no. I've been scooped on the Field of Dreams visit story!
    The all star game is a joke. Descalso has more votes than Wong
    No, the All-Star Game is the midsummer classic and a joy to behold every summer because it should be a national holiday. The fan voting has become something of a farce.
    I’ll go ahead and ask this, but I know it will never get answered. Do you think it fairly safe to say Mo is a poor evaluator or talent?
    I don't think it is "fairly safe" to say that at all, though I do find these "dare you to answer these questions" relentlessly adorable. I'm here to field the hard questions. Seems only fair. If you ask them, better be able to face them.
     
    Candidly, I think it speaks to what we discussed earlier: These conversations are too in the now. Let me tell you a quick story. Way back in the winter of 2004-2005 the Cardinals were trying to secure a second baseman, a starting second baseman. This was at a time when they were trying to use that position to save cost and they saw it as a rotating cast, changing every year and Jocketty once told me that they did that because the pool of candidate was so big -- it also included shortstops who couldn't find shortstop jobs. Makes sense. Well, the manager and some members of the front office wanted Roberto Alomar, and there was even a report in a New York paper that the Cardinals had come to terms with Alomar to be their second base. Huzzah! Big name! Hall of Fame player! Remarkable. Well, not so fast. There was another member of the front office who felt he had a bead on a better option -- better bang for the buck and analytically superior. He had a deal in place for Grudzielanek and asked for a chance to make it work. You know what happened. Alomar wasn't a Cardinal. Grudzielanek was. His play at second eventually won a Gold Glove, he hit well, and he was part of that keystone combination with David Eckstein. The member of the front office who pushed for that deal was Mozeliak.
     
    I got another one. The Cardinals were about to draft Pete Kozma and there was a voice -- who wasn't in the room -- who suggested they take a run at Porcello. He felt they could sign him. Luhnow and others weren't convinced. So they went with Kozma and Mozeliak didn't get his chance to try and work out a deal for Porcello.
     
    Porcello later won a Cy Young Award.
     
    That whole exchange would eventually prompt the Cardinals -- along with waiving Adam Ottavino -- to look at different ways to acquire and develop pitching and that has brought them to the point they are now. Even Luhnow gives Mozeliak credit for the vision on that, and it was Luhnow and his group that once told me that Mozeliak, a former scout, insisted that that the default be athleticism. Let that be the tiebreaker. And that brought in some of the talent. 
     
    I know this feels like a greatest hits compilation. There have been misses, too. Leake was an odd fit. Cecil hasn't worked out. Rasmus had to be salvaged. And so on. But these aren't new stories. They've been told before. They just seem to be forgotten because we're so in the now, now, now, now, now, no too late, we need tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow.
     
    And that's OK in the chat. And that's OK on Twitter. But I want to offer this context to you because when ownership is making a decision on firing someone or reassigning someone they are going to look at the context. They are going to know the above stories. They are going to see where those paths led, and it is "fairly safe" to say they see it differently than your question implies.
     
    One more story.
     
    A few springs ago, I sat with a good source on all things Cardinals -- he has a good feel for the team's view, etc. -- and we were watching the Marlins. We were talking about how the Marlins couldn't keep all the outfielders they had (and they didn't) and what one of the three they should keep. Ozuna was on the rise. Stanton was established. Yelich was still finding his way, his position, his swing, and not showing power that folks expected. This source said he had his answer, but he also knew the outfielder Mozeliak wanted make a play for because he thought that outfielder was going to be a star -- and you could get him before he did. The one of the three the Cardinals' front office eyed as the best of the group (and yes, contract played into this, of course) was Yelich.
     
    Decisions are different than evaluations. Always will be. It takes two teams to make a trade, two parties to get a contract done. It takes one to make an evaluation. 
    Do people really think Mo makes decisions based on his evaluations alone?
    They should not, no. DeWitt has a lot of say in the matter, too.
    Cardinals lineup for this evening:
     
    1. Carpenter, 3B
    2. DeJong, SS
    3. Goldschmidt, 1B
    4. Ozuna, LF
    5. Fowler, RF
    6. Molina, C
    7. Wong, 2B
    8. Bader, CF
    9. Mikolas, P
    Having enjoyed your podcast interview with #baseballbrit, I'm wondering if you two have been back in touch yet? Appreciate all you provide, DG.
    Have not. But we will be getting that pint in the UK.
    Perhaps someone has already touched on this, but regarding the leadoff spot, why not give Goldschmidt a shot? Rizzo has shown that it can work with the Cubs. Bat Carp in the two, then DeJong, Ozuna, etc...
    Sure. The more I think about it as the chat goes on the more I think DeJong is intriguing there.
    Derrick, if you think Pham's comments to SI had nothing to do with his trade, you're living in fairy land. No boss wants to hear or see that, including yours. That doesn't mean they were going to act in haste, and give him away, but from the moment that article was published, you had to know his days in St. Louis were numbered. And it was clear, he really didn't want to be there anymore. I would also argue they didn't get enough for him, but I understand it would be hard to get top dollar at that point.
    Next stop, Fairy Land. I'll be back by game time.
    What has Jose Martinez done this season to inspire more at-bats? I like him, but he's been an average hitter and that's the thing he does best!
    It's a fair question. Jose Martinez has the highest batting average on the team -- .281 -- but when you work you're way down the slash line his offensive production does veer toward average hitter. An average hitter in the majors right now has a slash of 
     
    .250/.321/.428 - .749 OPS
     
    Jose Martinez has a slash line of
     
    .281/.348/.393 - .747 OPS
     
    His slugging percentage is below average so you see his OPS sink to average. He's getting on base a lot with a high average, but not doing as much damage with those this. And that is also what has him toward the bottom of the Cardinals regulars when it comes to OPS. We've seen the playing time respond. Hot streak, he starts. Or sometimes subbing in for struggling teammates. But like today he's not in the lineup, and he hasn't had that long stretch of starts like we saw a few weeks ago.
    One second. Need to reset the questions.
    Just as I expected. My question was posted but conveniently overlooked. Must not have wanted to rock the boat huh?
    What question is that, Mark?
     
    You wrote: "I’ll go ahead and ask this, but I know it will never get answered. Do you think it fairly safe to say Mo is a poor evaluator or talent?"
     
    I answered: "I don't think it is "fairly safe" to say that at all."
     
    Sorry for wasting your time with the remainder of the answer to provide context. Hopefully others got something from it.
    Why is Cashman so good at trades? He rarely goofs.
    He's an excellent GM with a strong, smart group to help him, and a deep pocket to spend over the mistakes before anyone notices.
    You took your time with the answer on Mozeliak's eye for talent and he certainly does have some skill as his long track record shows. Nonetheless I was taken aback by your examples. Grudzielanek and Porcello/Kozma are ancient history at this point. And Yelich being the ideal target of the three marlins outfielders (due to Stanton's contract) was the conventional wisdom as I remember it.

    If you need to dig that deep to show the GM's skill for recognizing perhaps his best days are behind him?
    That's not what you said at all. Also, Yelich. Rather recent. Pitching finds. Rather recent. You are welcome to your opinion. I answered your question. I gave it time, and attempted to offer you some background and facts to either adjust your opinion, abandon your opinion, or strengthen your opinion. You are welcome to stick to your opinion. To me, it's a mayfly opinion. Here today, gone tomorrow, and all the while subject to how the wind blows.
    Please example what you meant when you placed “fairly safe” in quotation marks? That can be taken in a number of different ways.
    I'm quoting you. They're quote marks. I am quoting your question. That's how quote marks work. They weren't my words, so in order not to plagiarize or take credit for that phrase I put quotes on them so that people know I'm giving you credit for the description. Again, that's how quote marks work.
    Not meaning to tell you how to do your job, but do you have to entertain the "adorable" and "fairyland" questions? I guess this is more of a media question than a baseball one, but I wont miss reading the extremely polemical questions or the complaints about being ignored. There are constructive critical questions posed, and they allow for interesting insight. We even have comic books and movies for levity. What do the polemics add? Color? Comprehensiveness?
  • Sometimes it's just sport, I guess. I try to give a sense of the scope of questions, too. Within reason. Vulgar ones should never get through. But some of the wilder ones should, just so chatters have a sense of how others feel. And sometimes the wild ones give me a chance to offer a story or some facts that maybe are useful to others. I like questions like that.
    you confused my question about whether or not mozeliak's best days are behind him with mark's comments. I am not Mark and did not accuse Mozeliak of having no eye for talent.
    You are correct, I did. That's on me. Still, Yelich is a recent example. So are the pitchers acquired and developed. Sorry for the confusion, Matt. I misread the name.
    A poster earlier made the case to extend Ozuna. I find myself more and more in that boat everyday. Has there been any indication from the front office to indicate they'd be at all interested in doing such a thing?
    There has not been. There has been an indication from Ozuna's side that at some point here in the near future he'd like to have that conversation. Ozuna has warmed to St. Louis, warmed to the Cardinals clubhouse, and people close to him have said that he'd like to see what it would take to stick around here, or if that's something the Cardinals want to explore.
    Shouldn’t the Cardinals feel fortunate how close to the division lead they are considering their poor play and make the deals that could get them over the hump?
    Or worrisome that the division is so even, so logjammed that no team has separated itself and they're just going to beat up on each other all season until only one arrives in October.
    Will the Cardinals play at Texas next year? New stadium too add to your or Hummel’s list.Hummel
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