It doesn't appear that Goldschmidt was emotionally attached to No. 44 or any other number.
The MLS failure would be more likely, although that is a longshot. The XFL ever matching the NHL in revenue? That is some dream.
I can see a full makeover, for sure, but deliberate losing could cost this team massive revenue and make rebuilding the attendance base very difficult. We saw how hard it was to do that the last time the Blues tanked, under Bill and Nancy Laurie. The Blues will likely have a high draft pick this season and I would expect the team to add more picks by dumping veterans. But this team also has a nice group of prime-age players plus and decent pile of prospects.
Yeah, I don't see how Mizzou fans can pop off about much. Barry Odom and Cuonzo Martin are doing good work, but the Tigers are still a lower-tier SEC team in both sports.
I believe the XFL could still around for a while if it can keep payroll in line. But given the amount of pro and college football on TV during the season, is there much appetite for a second season in the spring? Now, if that league can last several years and become worthy to wager on, the legalization of gambling could help keep it alive.
No, I believe Georgia is better than Oklahoma. The SEC is so much better than the Big 12. With that defense (or lack thereof), the Sooners would have suffered multiple losses playing Georgia's schedule
As we note every week, Carpenter's fielding metrics at third base were not bad. And the Cardinals were collectively bad at first base, where Goldschmidt shines. So there is a chance the team could actually be beter defensively with Paul over there cleaning up some bad throws and taking away some right-side hits.
There are always outfielders available. Internally, if Fowler fails, then O'Neill plays in his place. Munoz could also end up in right field. Adolis Garcia could certainly hit better than .180 out there if he played every day. And, again, I would keep Jose Martinez for this reason unless another team offers up a "plus" reliever for him.
There is actually very little difference in speed of the NHL teams. I'd say this team could be in the middle of the pack with the right lineup, with Schwartz healthy, Kyrou, Thomas and Barbashev playing and guys like Maroon and Blais sitting.
Gorman may have slightly higher upside simply because he demonstrated freakish power at a young age. What happens after three of four years of natural maturation and professional training? As for fielding, both have only played third base in the minors and both have some work to do. I can't predict which one of the two is more likely to move across the diamond.
The odds of the Cardinals winning the Nolan Arenado Sweepstakes were about as long the team outbidding the world for Bryce Harper. They would be even longer if Goldschmidt re-ups. One, this franchise remains unlikely to ever give one of the top two or three biggest contracts in the industry. Two, the team's top two hitting prospects play third base. Unless both Gorman and Montero crap out, I don't see the Cardinals getting anywhere near that bidding.
There is a long list of candidates on both fronts. Ask Mr. Goold about that in his next chat since he will be plugged in and hearing names fly around as the market heats up.
I see the Cardinals settling their pitching during spring training, sorting the pile between big league rotation, big league bullpen and Memphis rotation. On the odd chance that everybody is healthy and Wainwright looks viable, we could see both Hudson and Reyes shoring up the 'pen.
The Cardinals could get in that by offering up some elite young pitching, but that would be stupid. And beyond pitching, they don't have a whole to trade except for spare parts like Gyorko and Jose Martinez.
I'd go with Stallions as a homage to the NFL expansion that never was.
See, the thing about free agency is that players can do where they want. Can't put them under house arrest. And as Jason Heyward reminded us, guys may take less money to play in a different market.
There is no reason to keep the current group together. That said, trading guys to just to trade them is dumb and I don't believe Armstrong will ever do that. If he moves core players, he needs to get big value in return. And I'm sure Tom Stillman will be heavily involved in anything major.
The Blues are sort of the opposite of last year's Vegas Golden Knights. That team played over its head all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals, riding collective spirit and will to win. This team lacks both and consistently plays below it's ability. This team isn't THAT slow, but it plays slow. For 10, 20 or even 30 minutes at a time it can pin an opponent in, then if folds up. Guys skate in with clean looks at the goaltender and, for whatever reason, force off-target passes rather than take the obvious shot. At the most inopportune time they commit glaring turnovers. And when they really need a big save, often Jake Allen fails to make it. We could go on and on, but you've seen the games.
That has been my take for months now.