Join Cardinals beat writer Derrick Goold for his live chat at 10 a.m. Monday

Join Cardinals beat writer Derrick Goold for his live chat at 10 a.m. Monday

Bring your Cards questions and comments to Monday’s 10 a.m. live chat.

  • Does the overlay on the strike zone used on tv change from batter to batter. It looks to me like it stays the same, but theorectically the strike zone should be different for each batter? Just curious!
    It does not, usually. That's one of the issues with the public perception, for sure.
    What is the scoop with Yasiel Puig? Where is he? Is he available? Would he not push our 3 outfielders and strengthen our bench? Add some fire to our team?
    He has been in Mexico. He's available to teams, at last check. No team has rushed to sign him. That should tell you something. The Cardinals have not had interest.
    If I have a choice between free Cardinals tickets and a free root canal from a student dentist at the dental school down the street, I’m going with the root canal. At least I have the possibility of a better future.
    I had a root canal during spring training March 2020. That's not a metaphor. That's just true.
    As Busch Stadium looks more and more empty these days, I thought I'd share my stance, not so much a question.

    Every year for the past 15+, two high school friends and I have converged in STL for a weekend and a ballgame. With the exception of one friend's military service, none of us had missed since 2004. A couple years ago, with the direction of the team going the wrong way, we decided to keep the tradition alive but voice displeasure w/ our wallets and take in road games.

    Fast forward to this year and we're planning to maybe go PIT or COL or somewhere, then BOOM, Arenado happens and I tell them I'll buy tickets at Busch right then. I'm pumped. Fast forward again a few months and here we are, COVID is raging again, the team is terrible to watch, so we decide not to spend money on it and just rent an Airbnb in STL for a weekend and just hang out, still no Busch tickets purchased. I have to imagine there are thousands like us throughout Cardinal Nation and the team will surely take note.
    This is the first indication of any real sag, honestly. I've heard a lot of talk before on Twitter and in chats, but there hasn't been a tangible sign of any consumer activism. I guess the playoff game that didn't sellout was perhaps that. But it was isolated.
    Now, COVID infections are rising. There maybe "hundreds" doing as you are doing, but just as many "hundreds" may not be comfortable in crowds. What really should send a shiver through baseball and the Cardinals is that a year away from the game, tightening financial situations, lost jobs, and on and on has changed how people spend their entertainment dollar, and less are spending it on baseball. Less are spending it on subscribing to watch baseball broadcasts.
    We'll see if this persists beyond the pandemic, if/when we get out of it.
    The early indications of consumers demanding a better product are starting to show up, spurred by the tightening budgets and different choices when it comes to limited entertainment dollars.
    Cabrera started a few games last year. Have the Cardinals given up on him becoming a starter?
  • Given up? No. Found a spot where he can really excel and help them? Yes.
    If there is a 2022 season and DH is part of it, do you think there would be any organizational interest in bringing Albert back for a year? Certainly a Wainwright/Molina/Pujols farewell tour would sell some ticket, no?
    For all the reasons explored and discussed in this chat about how
    -- The Cardinals need to find a way to improve the depth/thump of their lineup.
    -- The Cardinals have not seen nostalgia move ticket sales
    it sure seems unlikely that this is the move they make. Ownership was clear that if the timing was different -- Pujols available in September for a farewell turn -- they would have tried to sign him. But I don't see the motivation for a reunion like this, unless the Cardinals are pivoting to selling memories for 2022 and not tickets.
    As mentioned earlier in the chat, I too heard Shannon say “this club is not very good” on yesterday’s radio broadcast. Almost ran off the road actually. My question, will he hear anything from the organization (like tone it down, remember who you work for, etc.)? Just curious. And thanks for what you do!
    Probably not. And if he does, he can always point to the standings. They're readily available and they say the same thing. Can't hide from a record.
    In "A League of Their Own" the young woman reads the board and runs across the field to embrace her sister, shouting "I'm a Peach". In 2021 the poor young man calls his wife/girlfriend/mother and announces "I'm a Complex?"

    C'mon DG, this is bad, you gotta do something here.
    I, personally, cannot wait until a young pitcher celebrates being placed on a "complex" team, and then she goes and dominates on her way to a Class A promotion. Would be great.
    You free this evening to join our broadcast of "The Musial Suspects" podcast? Gotta at least acknowledge the name game is on point
  • The name game is strong. Well done. I am impressed by the pun but not available at the moment, sorry.
    MO said last week that Hicks could be looked at as a starter, do you see this actually happening and if so do you believe it is a viable option?
    I don't understand his comment and think it lacks the explanation and reconciliation with other comments and action. Some followups:
    -- A starter, huh -- at what level exactly?
    -- A starter, huh -- so a contender is going to script short starts for Hicks when the same contender would not do that very thing for Reyes?
    That's just a start of the questions I have. I don't see the logic behind it. Eager to hear it. 
    I keep hearing the cards are going to go with the Sam cas of characters next year. Why would they think can compete with the reds and brewers. I see arenado leaving after next year
    I have not heard that. Not sure where you're going for that information.
    Scoring question. If a batter starts the at bat with the bases loaded, and then say there is a wild pitch on the third pitch which scores a run, how is the at-bat scored for future reference? For example, Molina has batted 10 times with the bases loaded. Would this hypothetical at-bat be included in the 10 because it started with the bases loaded, or not because it did not finish as such? Thanks!
    It's the situation when the at-bat ends. So, for example:
    -- A batter comes to the plate with a runner at first base. That is not a RISP AB.
    -- That runner advances to third on an E1 pickoff. Now it is a RISP AB.
    -- That runner scores from third on a wild pitch. Now it is not an RISP AB.
    All the same batter. Different situation before he takes a swing and puts the ball in play. Same would apply to a bases loaded situation. If the bases aren't loaded when the outcome of the at-bat happens, then it's not a bases-loaded at-bat.
    Do you think the Cardinals are worried about St. Louis City CC taking some fans away from Busch? The seasons will run more or less concurrently. The soccer team will have many fewer games and it a lower capacity stadium, but it'll still be another place for sports fans to spend their entertainment funds on. Personally, I go to 9 or 10 Cardinals games a year as part of a season ticket group, but I have a deposit down for soccer season tickets and will likely let the Cardinals tickets go if I get St. Louis City season tickets.
    I do not get that sense, no.
    If there is a strike next year am I correct that the owners don't pay during the strike? If they resolve issues after a strike to owners have to owe back pay or do the players lose out?
    I think we're going to get in the habit in this chat of offering this glossary of terms every so often.
    Work stoppage -- This is when the game isn't played, not practiced, closed due to labor issues, and players are not paid. 
    Lockout -- This is a work stoppage when the owners prohibit action. There is no CBA.
    Strike -- This is a work stoppage when players refuse to work. They refuse to accept the imposed CBA.
    Players lose the salary when the game is not played. They can negotiate for a pool of back pay if they wish, or they can file a grievance if they felt that the CBA was negotiated in bad faith. This has happened before. Recently. Last year, the union was frustrated that it felt the league did not have any intention of starting when possible and intended to impose a shortened season even when more games were possible. Of course a grievance sought pay for what they felt was bad faith negotiations that cost salaries.
  • Curious what you think of my freshly reported media deal with Barstool Sports?
    This is from a report in the New York Post if any one is interested.
    I'm just disappointed. But not surprised at all.
    Do you see a pattern in the attendance of these chats that correlates with the Cards' performance? As the fall into mediocrity do the numbers here also decrease?
    That is not the case, no. The chats are usually robust. And there are as many questions here and as many people watching as there were a week ago, coming out of the trade deadline.
    Mr. Goold: Baseball, for the most part, is a boring game to watch. If not, then why are there fans talking and texting on their cell phones? It's because of all the non-action taking place on the field. The owners are trying to help with rule changes, but until the players stop with all their game-delaying tactics, such as the pitcher taking 60 seconds between pitches and the batters constantly stepping out of the batters box to tighten their batting gloves or just taking a stroll after a swing, things aren't going to change. I guess the players and the MLBPA will take notice when there are fewer and fewer fans in the stands.
    Mr. Bruce: I could not disagree more. There is more dead time in a football game around the occasional collisions of humanity than there is in a baseball game. There is more action in a basketball game and still people are on their cell phones, checking Snapchat, posing for the 'gram. There is constant action in a soccer game, and yet you'll here how because it lacks scoring there isn't much action at all. If anything, baseball does not do well when compared to football because you know the ball is going to be hiked on first down, you know there will be a collision. It's scripted, predictable action regardless of the inaction around it. In baseball, you don't know if this is the pitch that is going to be put in play, if this is the pitch that is going to be robbed of a hit or slugged for a homer. You don't know. Baseball, to me, is better compared to soccer.
    It's sustained tension. This might be the pass that leads to a breakaway. This might be the pitch that leads to excitement. It might not be. But it might be. Or it might be the next one.
    That's the appeal baseball has to me. 
    It has a leisurely pace until the one moment it doesn't, and you don't know that moment -- so it keeps you on the edge looking for it. That's not to say that the pace is perfect, or that it's for everyone. Some people what their collisions scripted so they can set a watch by it. Others like a plot twist when they least expect it.
    Good thing we have a smorgasbord of sports to choose from for all types of fans.
    I am from St. Louis. Live in Indiana. Love the Cardinals but stopped getting the paper because I was so frustrated with the Cardinals. Guess what? I started getting the paper again because I love these Q & A's and want the Cardinals to right the ship! Thank you for this!
    Thank you for making that choice. That's the challenge and the expectation we have to meet with our coverage -- so that it outperforms the team, even if the team appears in October. That responsibility is on us. Subscribers expect it.
    Derrick, I get that the Cards couldn’t save this season at the trade deadline. And clearly, the moves for Lester and Happ were designed to simply eat innings in the rotation. Why not keep going to the waiver wire and free agent list, instead of trading Gant and Thomas? Gant was better in the bullpen, and both could have been better utilized as trade chips this off-season.
  • They had exhausted those options, and they wanted to make a few deals to get someone to help in 2021 for players they weren't sure had a role in 2022 and might lose their 40-man sports anyway.
  • Hi Derrick, how does the 10/5 no trade clause work? Assuming Molina didn't have a no trade in his contract, only getting it through 10/5, if the Cardinals got his permission and traded him to the Dodgers in May, is his no trade clause now over? And what if they Cardinals resigned him after this season? Would he get it back?
    So 10/5 is simply -- 10 years of service time, the previous 5 with the same/active team. In both of your examples, he would have 10/5 rights and can shape any trade. Permission has to be sought for each trade potential, not one then applying to all the rest later in the season.
    Asking for your thoughts on an observation. That point just at the All Star break when both the Cubs and Cardinals were teetering seemed pivotal to me. We all knew how the Cardinals would play it, but everyone wondered if the Cubs would go on to be buyers or sellers as "holders" did not seem an option for them. They chose to be sellers. And thus the question. Fast forward four years. The Cubs are back in the World Series. The Cardinals still have not had a losing record and actually made it to the NLCS once in 2023. Which team chose the better path, in your opinion? And do you think that seeing the Cubs back in a WS before the Cardinals get there would cause ownership to re-evaluate their stated goals?
    1) My view is potentially not the team's view on this. World Series -- flags fly forever ... all of that. That matters. The 2016 World Series title happened for the Cubs. The dynasty did not. The sustained contention did not. The championship did, and that's real, and that's more recent than the Cardinals have a championship, and that makes the Heyward deal worth it. Championships are hard to get, and whatever it takes to get one is validated by getting one, to me.
    But that's all in hindsight. Teams don't operate in hindsight.
    That's why the team does not entirely share that opinion, because it's a business and does not see the chips-in as a move because it exposes them to losing revenue/traction/whatever in the other years. Cycling in and out of contention, back and forth from titles, with no guarantee of titles is not a good business model for them. And neither is it for other teams. The Red Sox (under Epstein) and sense wanted to build a sustained contender because they felt it increased their odds of getting hot twice, thrice in October and winning titles. And they did. Teams that put everything into one year to win it all tend to fall shy because it's hard to win titles so they go for the sustained model.
    Think of it terms of probability. They want to increase the probability of winning a title and that takes steps:
    -- Don't hope for a fluke.
    -- Getting to October with a playoff berth is minimum requirement.
    -- Getting to October as a division champ is the preferred berth.
    And then see what happens. Hope to be healthy. Hope to get hot. Hope to have the pitching. Hope to not run into a buzzsaw like the 2004 Sox, hope to get breakout/legendary performances like Freese in 2011. And so on.
    All of that is to say that flags fly forever and make all the moves worth it, but you cannot make moves counting on that being the outcome. It's impossible. Even the Dodgers lose. They have one World Series title for all their money, and it came at the end of the shortened 2020 season. The Cardinals, if anything, have shown that they're not a Keep Up with the Jones team. The Cubs in the World Series would be one more year they didn't win it, but that trip to the NLCS would be one more year they put themselves in position to win it, and that's what they and every other team that fancies itself a perennial contender are trying to do.
    That may not be the answer that you want from a team as a fan, but it's the answer almost every team is going to give until it already holds the trophy and can speak in hindsight.
    That said, the Dodgers should have the Cardinals attention.
    It may be a few years away, but the Cardinals brand is at stake if they are no longer the NL team with the most World Series titles. That could be threatened. That is their link to history, their place in the majors, and that should not be lost without taking a stand.
    But as mentioned here, that stand has to start with getting to the playoffs year after year after year so that the odds of a title grow. That's the clear and present concern for the Cardinals. 
    After the players come off the dl what will the starting rotation look like?
    Check the coverage out of Pittsburgh on Tuesday. The answer will be there. One question left to answer for the team before they can say for sure.
    Alright, that will have to do it. An earlier start for an earlier ending to the chat today. Thanks for joining me here at StlToday. Great range of questions today, and I hope that if you didn't get your question answered -- yeesh, there are still hundreds in the inbox; thanks for all of them! -- come back next week. I'll be at the keyboard and it should be more of the usual time. 
    I'll be covering the series from Pittsburgh all week for the Post-Dispatch and throughout the day at StlToday.com. Rick Hummel has a great story coming for Tuesday's paper, as an off day story. Thoughtful comments from DeJong. Hall of Famer Hummel takes over the coverage when the team continues this road trip in Kansas City.
    Talk to you next week.
    Stay tuned. Stay informed. Please, stay healthy and do all you can to help others, too. Thank you.
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