He has $50 million left on his contract. Assuming that no team wants any part of that, Fowler will get his shot at redemption. But the Cards can't fire Matheny again, so there will be no excuses. Either Fowler resumes hitting and playing more energetic defense or he will have to move along, with the team eating that contract.
Actually I liked some of what I saw from Allen in Game 1, notably his more controlled side-to-side movements. When he moved quickly from the right post to the left, he stopped at that post and remained square. This is something he worked on over the summer, both with his physical training and his goaltending technique. In the past, he tended to overplay shots, sliding beyond the proper mark and way out of position -- leaving the back side wide, wide open. He is an athletic goalie, but he needs to be sounder. So that's a start. Also, his puck-handing was helpful with Butler and Schmaltz forced to play. He made lots of timely saves . . . and then the shorthanded goal happened. To your point, he can't buckle there. I thought maybe one of the goals was bad, but, still, to go deep in the playoffs the team will need him to clean up the bad goals and make more of those big timely saves with the team under duress. Let's revisit this topic later in the season to see if he is on the right track.
I disagree on the "no other options" to hit third, but agree that dealing him or putting him at third -- where his relative offensive value would decrease -- are not attractive options.
I can't imagine this team committing, say, $350 million to Harper while it still owes Fowler $50 million and has a couple of intriguing outfield prospects in O'Neill and Garcia.
Good observations about Allen. I noted his efforts to get "quieter" a few questions back. Allen will get a good run with the team this season. He would have to be pretty terrible to be gone by January. But this IS his prove-it year and there IS a lot of pressure on the coaching staff and management team to succeed this season.
No. 2 whipping boy, behind Allen.
You mean Carlos, of course. I would give him one more shot in the rotation before resorting to that. Look at his starting numbers the last 3 1/2 years. They are pretty good. Maybe he will never become Pedro Martinez, but he can still be a well-above-average starter. That assumes, of course, he matures.
Fowler likely gets a shot to play right field because of his contract, but he should have to earn his at bats. If he comes into spring training believing he is entitled to at bats because of his 10-year track record, then somebody else will play right field. I favor keeping J. Martinez, but the team may move him to an American League team. As for the young pitchers, yes, they ran out of gas.
1) Football, 2) Basketball, 3) Hockey, 4) Baseball.
I am less shrill about Allen than most chatters and commenters, but I'll say this: Why did he stick back in the paint and just let the dude pick a spot? He needed to treat that like a penalty shot -- come out and then play along with the skater.
No, Boras does not consider that Holland deal an incentive to send Harper here. But the IRS should let the Cards write that off as a charitable donation. As for paying Harper, I just don't see it. The Cards have never won the bidding for a true top-tier guy so I'm going to be stunned the first time that ever happens.
If he gets lit up for two or three weeks straight, then the team will worry.
Sure. It lived without the NFL before. Reviving the MLS stadium/expansion bid would be a nice plus. Baseball/soccer/hockey would be a nice mix here. And if SLU can sustain D-I basketball success, that helps too.
I know, I know. I am with you all the way!
Mozeliak likely spent some of his equity on the Fowler deal. If DeWitt has to eat that $50 million, that will sting. And Mozeliak got to can a manager and name a guy he has more influence over. That said, I don't see the Cardinals making gigantic changes to the baseball operation unless DeWitt has a big disagreement with these guys, as he did with Jocketty. Remember, this is a hands-on owner. If he is on the same philosophical page as these guys, it will take a lot to put them in peril.
If the Cards stayed around .500 rather than making a spirited run at the playoffs, then the front office would have gotten an F.
Actually, the Cards were very proactive in spending big in Latin America ahead of the anticipated "Hackgate" fiasco. That allowed them to remain deep with prospects, with facilitated some helpful trades. This team also did very well in the draft (Bader, Hudson, Gorman, et al) to remain consistently competitive. Look at the Mets, Giants, Nationals --- there are plenty of peers with bigger issues. That said, yes, Mozeliak could use a big score of some sort after getting outmaneuvered by the Brewers this season.
I don't see a huge 40-man roster crunch. A bunch chunk of that current list is occupied by depth guys. Mozeliak made some in-season moves to alleviate some of the crunch. But, yes, there will be activity as the team tries to define its bullpen for next season, add some power and maybe, just maybe, reduce its army of utility infielders.
I mean, that Purdue game was bad enough. I was proud to war my beer-strained black-and-gold fanwear back in the 70s.