Actually that guy could be Yairo Munoz, since center field might be his best position and he's hitting right now. I believe he is a better candidate to help offensively than Lane Thomas.
There has been no major shift in hitting approach. Paul Goldschmidt has always hit for power. He just failed to hit homers. Same for Paul DeJong. Same for Matt Carpenter. Ozuna kept doing it, then he got hurt. Edman didn't do it in the minors, but he's hit a few here. Wieters hit a couple after hitting absolutely nothing from the right side of the plate this season.
OK, so Wieters hit a couple of homers. Do people forget what happened earlier this season when he got to play every day?
Sure, it's advantage. If the guy in charge has an aura, that's good. Physicality and a track record to pummeling people in a blood submission can add to a coach's aura.
I believe the Cardinals might be the least likely of the NL Central teams to make bailout trades because this organization really wants back into the postseason mix. But if the team absolutely tanks, sure, that could be one of its options.
Woodford has progressed nicely, but I don't believe he is earning elite ratings. Helsley has a big arm, but his comeback from injury has been rocky. (Same goes for poor Alex Reyes.) O'Neill can hit homers and chase down fly balls so there is value there -- but given the questionable state of this organization's outfield, I don't see how the Cardinals can trade him unless they are getting a proven young power-hitting outfielder in return. And who is going to make that trade with the Cardinals?
It's more complicated that that because the Cardinals had a bunch of guys in a pile. But to your point, keeping Mercado and simply losing Garcia (if that;s what it came down to) would have been a better outcome. Maybe Conner Capel and Jhon Torres will prove us wrong some day, but right now Mercado looks like a player that could help the Cardinals.
Carlson has some pop, but he's a switch-hitter with balanced splits. If he can stay into gap-to-gap mode and not fall into the pull-happy trap, he could be a welcome asset.
I get your point, but Molina views days off as slightly more enjoyable than foul tips to the sub-abdominal region. And he has been fairly consistent because of that. And for most hitters, two days off a week is more of a disruption than a refresher. As for adding an impact player, yes, that will be difficult given the team's predicament.
The Hockey News made the case for $6 million per year on long team (six to eight years) by using the comparisons of Connor Hellbuyck and John Gibson. Then there is the three-year, $11.25 million deal Matt Murray got. I'm guessing that Doug Armstrong would like to land somewhere in the middle of those two comparisons.
I know the Cardinals have to trade guys to clear the logjam, but when you trade players 1) They better not be better than what you are keeping and 2) You better get a good return. While the Cardinals would have a Dodgers-like roster if they kept everybody, but it's fair to ask if they could have turned that surplus into more than the .500 team they are today.
Shildt has actually done a lot of good. The fielding is better and we all appreciate his attempts to make the team more interesting by running more. But as a tactician, what more could he do to get guys out of their months-long slumps? Maybe you can argue that he gave his starting position players too much opportunity earlier this season, but a year ago the players bristled at Matheny's constant shuffling.
I'd say Pietrangelo can think in terms of $9 million per season (P.J. Subban money) and Brayden Schenn can reasonably expect to surpass the $7 million AAV that Kevin Hayes got in Philly. Perhaps the less-than-expected bump in the salary cap will hold things down a bit, but the top guys always get paid if they reach unrestricted free agency.
This team is pretty dull, yes. And we've seen a lot of performance regression, either from older guys like Goldschmidt and Carpenter or from guys not fully established like DeJong. I hate to say it, but I don't see an easy way out of this. The Cardinals need to get into the bracket if at all possible because it's hard to project better times in 2020 given the age and long-term trends of many key players.
You Kasperi Kapanen fascination puzzles me. He is a good supporting cast player on a deep offensive team. He might be a nice emerging talent to add to a team lacking scoring depth, like Colorado. Give him power play time and 17 minutes a game see what happens. But the Blues already have a forward surplus and even with a $3.2 million cap hit he made zero sense here.
Chat regulars know that I am the wrong guy to ask XFL questions. Sorry. I do hope that that league makes it so we have more to write about here, but I have less than no faith that it will last long.
Not familiar with the schedule. It's been up in Western Canada with the Chief, Colton Parayko and Brayden Schenn.
No, no and no. The expectation is we could learn more at the MLS All-Star Game. If St. Louis becomes official, then things move quickly. Until then, we are in St. Louis Stallions territory.
No, the XFL is not an audition for the NFL. As we always say about the NFL, if there is a multi-billionaire out there dying to put a NFL team in St. Louis, then St. Louis could get a team. That multi-billionaire will either need to move his existing team here or buy a team to move. Of course, the multi-billionaire will need to lean on the NFL until he gets approval to make that happen. He (or she) will also have to substantially finance a new $1 billion stadium because public funds for it would be scarce. If all that happens, St. Louis could get back into the league. Selling a bunch of tickets to a minor league team won't do a bit of good -- unless that somehow convinces a multi-billionaire to make the above play.