Bobo's here and we have lots of ballplayers. So let's go!
Andrew has been pretty steady. He actually uses the whole field like hitters in the old days. I'm sure the No. 5 spot will see a variety of faces this season as Mike Shildt tries to make the pieces fit. Ultimately the No. 5 hitter might have to come from another team.
DeJong will get every opportunity to hit his way out of this funk, but that should happen down in the batting order so that he's out of harm's way. Edmundo Sosa certainly looks like a ballplayer and I wouldn't mind seeing him get few more starts during this 17-day stretch without off days. Sosa has added a bit of pop to his bat and he is another guy who can run a bit.
I have always been a Nugent Hopkins fan. He can play center or wing and he can play in all game situations. But this team is pretty solid down the middle. Given the flat salary cap for years to come and some good young players who will gain earning power, I'd be surprised to see the Blues lock in another high-priced player with a long-term deal. But then again, Doug Armstrong surprised me with his big play on Torey Krug and his one-year flyer on Mike Hoffman.
Yes, Missouri has been targeting another power forward/center type player. There are many, many guards and wings in the portal but not so many big guys. Hence MU's interest in some JUCO players as well.
I didn't see the play, but I trust from the strong on-the-record reaction to it that it was an umpiring mistake.
I have seen nothing to this point that inspires me to argue for higher placement in the order from Williams. If fact, he will have his hands full keeping more than a platoon role now that Bader is coming back.
The Cardinals could have quite a few all-stars: Flaherty, Goldschmidt, Arenado and Molina could all be strong candidates. So that's a coin flip.
Berube is willing to use those guys in highly shelterted roles, i.e., offensive zone starts in careful matchups. Overall The Chief is still working to get that buy-in across the board, but the team is certainly getting closer.
If the pandemic is still a thing next fall, then we could have taxi squads. Otherwise the NHL will try to get back into a normal rhythm.
The incumbents will continnue to get chances. But if the group fails to increase its production by quite a bit then, yes, I would expect to see changes. The goal coming into this season was to give them a long look. They are getting that. Let's see what they do with it.
There are still plenty of drives to the basket. But, yes, the accurate long-range shooting has impacted the game in a big way and, yes, the traditional low-post center has less and less of a role in the game. It's spacing, slashing and shooting now.
I believe the game keeps evolving. I believe the shifts will eventually force hitters to become more balanced because it will be very, very hard to simply overpower the shift with the long ball. We'll see a lot of Matt Carpenter-like failures as a result. As more hitters wash out of the game, we'll see some players start to adapt so they don't end up as gym teachers. I'm not in favor of meddling with the game by outlawing the shift or backing the mound up a few feet. Just let the players have at it. Let the competitive Darwinism take over.
The Blues will need to balance up their defensive corps with another sturdy shutdown defender with a good wingspan. But the stereotypical "big physical defender" has become less and less relevant as the game gets faster and the officials allow less and less interference and big hitting.
He's still on the team. That's not a small thing, since John Mozeliak clearly put hiim on the clock. I imagine "good graces" will require more than one timely three-run homer.
Justin has helped himself this year, for sure, but he is surprisingly shaky going back on fly balls. And although he can make hard contact, he needs to make more consistent contact.
Alex Reyes has a ton of talent. And he has some resolve, too, as we saw as he worked out of trouble again and again. If he evers settles in with good command he's been something. Given all the time he has missed, this is going to be a process.
I don't know the extent of Dunn's injury. But this team has not exactly been playing lockdown defense in his absence, so I would expect him to get back into the lineup when healthy.
Here's thing about blind squirrels: Has anybody actually ever seen one sniffing around their back yard, bumping into the fence, banging his or her head on the tree trunk while looking for acorns? All I see are squirrels racing around and jumping from branch to branch like the Wallendas. I'ver never seen one fall.
Yes, unless he finally proves he can hit consistently well against right-handed pitching.