In the conversation, definitely. On a few ballots, yes.
Probably. Depends on how the CBA goes.
That's fair. It's also fair to point out that the NFL plays once a week. The Cardinals have had six home games in the span the Vikings have had one. The Vikings-Colts preseason game had a paid-ticket attendance of 66,022. That's great. The Cardinals sold 174,583 tickets in that same week to six games. That's not to say that if the Vikings played six times a week they wouldn't draw more than the Cardinals. They might. They would not draw 66K though because some people could see them tomorrow. Any time you compare the NFL to MLB -- Tv ratings, ticket sales, whatever -- please keep in mind that the NFL has the edge of playing once a week and not being there tomorrow. No one says, "Well, I don't feel like going to the Packers game tonight. I'll just go tomorrow."
They have done nothing to prove that they can. They are the team they've been.
They're opposed to a salary cap. Anything tied to that is going to be unpalatable.
It's getting better. It's not yet good enough. The Cardinals have a good setup when it comes to Palm Beach, in part because it's at the major-league spring facility and because they have so many people centralized and assigned there. That said, they've had some missteps this year. They did promise to double the food budget for the affiliates and earlier this season they had not seen that implemented as they planned, so I was told they would circle back to enforce the spending on more food options. I need to check on that again. The Cardinals, like many teams, could take a more active role in the housing needs of players during the season.
It's increasingly vital for the reason you mentioned. The Cardinals have two of the best all-around players in the National League and one of the best young pitchers in the game. To date, they don't have a pennant in the Flaherty Era. Do not have a championship in the past 10 years of Wainwright-Molina, and would be in jeopardy of not having a pennant with their $50-million corner infielders. That, to me, would be a missed opportunity.
It's more the former, and it does have something to do with the latter. The Cardinals are going to look at pairing Kim with Lester in a piggyback setup. And if not with Lester than possibly some other starter. But that's the idea they're slowly integrating into the pitching setup.
Not much. That's because most everyone is reserving judgment at the moment. Please keep in mind that he did not play a game in 2020, and that means the power play is new for everyone to see. He did not hit with a lot of power as a pro coming out of Southern Cal. He was a good bat-to-ball prospect, a solid corner outfielder. The best comp I came up with was this -- he was a lot like Stephen Piscotty, just that Piscotty hinted at more power before it arrived, and we've just seen it arrive with Nootbaar in part because of the missed 2020 season. If he can be a lefthanded-hitting Piscotty, there's a place for him as an everyday player in the lineup.
He has the stuff. If he gets the consistency, he'll have the late-inning role, too.
Hunter Renfroe just hit his 23rd homer, his eighth of the month. Heard that name before.
Same team next year? I don't know where you're reading that. That isn't how I see it.
Putting the ball in play has its benefit. Ask the 2013 Cardinals.
Imagined. Anecdotal. You probably don't remember the four times it worked in one game against the Pirates this past weekend. But the one time it didn't that produced a run against the Brewers it stands out. Or the one time Yelich bunted. But the three times Edman turned a groundball into an out because of where he was shifted into the grass is now just seen as routine and forgotten, same with the 6-3 on the right of the bag.
I trust that Bill DeWitt Jr. knows the difference between what the manager is saying for public consumption and what he says behind closed doors, sometimes with DeWitt in the room.
Mozeliak certainly would like to keep the winning streak going, yes. If he can build a team that stops on a dime at 82 wins, then the front office is more skilled than you or anyone wants to give them credit because that seems highly unlikely that a team can be built for 82 and no more and no accidently win 90 or accidentally lose 87. That kind of pinpoint planning is galaxy brain stuff.
Thank you for listening. You describe it far more exciting than we did. We described an outside voice -- not an outspoken voice. Not someone who in an Aaron Sorkin fit of righteous indignation and snappy dialogue would barge into Mozeliak's offense and change the course of Cardinals history. Just someone from the outside who could offer an honest appraisal of how the Cardinals are doing thing and a different perception. They've done that at times before. Luhnow is the most famous example. Moises Rodriguez. Gary LaRocque -- who has had success coming from the outside and offering a different view at times. He had the ties to the team as a player, but Randy Flores brought an outside perspective to the amateur scouting because of the experience he had building a business related to it. Matt Slater came from outside the organization as a scout, and the Cardinals have benefited from his interest/knowledge/relationship with Asia's pro leagues. Those are some examples. The question we posed was this: When does continuity invite complacency? And if the Cardinals feel that some teams have pulled ahead of them when it comes to a competitive edge, then maybe pull from those teams. Sure, Mozeliak would hire that person. But don't presume that someone who hires a person doesn't also listen to that person. Otherwise, why hire them? What happened in 2007 isn't forgotten around the front office that was changed by it.
Combination of all of the above, which is why it happened. Arenado has mentioned publicly and privately that he enjoys hitting cleanup. If they want to get one of their best bats producing and comfortable and give him a different look, it makes sense to put him where he has said he's comfortable, especially if there is an alternative. Lineup dynamics say don't put too much stock in the lineup other than the people who bat higher bat more often, but if you want to find the nuances of dynamics then at least consider that the Nos 2, 4, and 5 hitters are going to get the most opportunities with a chance to drive a rally, while the No. 3 hitter is most likely to bat with the bases empty and two outs pretty often. This seems like a lineup that fits those trends.