He is projected to back up at third base, first base and designated hitter. He has a real chance to stick in the big leagues as that team goes into tank-and-rebuild mode.
Again, I have absolutely no idea. I know that the Carson project had lots of support, but Jerry Jones, who had direct business ties to the Kroenke's project, helped flip the vote.
A couple of things there. One, the Blues have a LOT of injured forwards. They are already using guys they would rather have in San Antonio. Also, they have seven healthy defensemen playing well. And Craig Berube doesn't use his fourth line much during 5-on-5 play. Also, playing short one forward allows him to double-shift whichever top forward is playing well. Finally, scouts from other teams are tracking defenseman Carl Gunnarsson and Jay Bouwmeester as trade targets before the deadline. So when Berube uses seven D-men, he can showcase those two guys when they are healthy.
The Blues leaned on two lines because of massive injuries. If GM Doug Armstrong makes major trades, he will do that to shake up the team chemistry moving forward, beyond this year. If he trades a cornerstone player, he needs to get one back. Otherwise Armstrong will move a couple of guys with expiring contracts to add draft picks and also create playing time for younger guys.
If I had to pick a guy off that loaded Toronto team, I go for Mitch Marner. He looks elite. Nylander is a really nice player when he is in high gear, but he wouldn't transform the Blues attack. The Blues already have a bunch of really nice forwards. And, like you say, Nylander is getting star money on that new deal. Top defensemen are precious commodities. Remember, the Devils got Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson. Nylander is no Hall and Larsson is no Pietrangelo.
Yairo Munoz. He can play all over the infield and outfield. And he can hit. I see him making the team and the Cardinals hoping that circumstances elsewhere open up a trade market for Jedd Gyorko, who can do solid work playing a regular role. When this team is healthy, Gyorko doesn't have a whole lot of opportunity. Surely somebody else could plug him into their lineup.
True, but when you forward options are so limited, a seventh D can be more useful than a fourth-line winger that the coach really doesn't want to use. That seventh D-man can jump in on the penalty kill, for instance, while a fringe fourth-liner might get just a handful of even-strength shifts.
The Winter Warm-Up is here, so it's officially OK to talk baseball. Some veterans are already at work in Jupiter, working out while the prospects go through their paces in the Instructional League format.
I agree that adding one more premium reliever would have been the smart play. And, yes, the franchise could certainly afford to add a Zach Britton after adding Andrew Miller. The trend in today's game has managers using high-leverage relievers all over the game, from the early innings to the ninth inning. That approach demands more high-leverage guys with no room for the Seth Maness/Matt Bowman-caliber middle man. Managers won't shutdown guys up and down the pen and not ground ball guys or soft-tossing lefty specialists. Now, maybe the Cardinals get there by using Alex Reyes and Dakota Hudson in relief after adding a nice piece with Miller. The young guys weren't the issue with last year's bullpen; injuries and/or failure among the veterans doomed that team. Norris, Gregerson, Leone, Cecil, Holland . . . what looked good on paper at the the start of the season did not work out so well.
He would have to be, wouldn't he? But the team can't pass on a good Gyorko deal to protect against the outside chance Carpenter suffered a serious injury.
OK, it's been today. Far less contentious than some weeks for whatever reason. Thanks! Be safe this weekend and we'll see you down the road.