Join columnist Ben Frederickson for a live STL sports chat at 11 a.m. Tuesday

Join columnist Ben Frederickson for a live STL sports chat at 11 a.m. Tuesday

Ben Frederickson answers your Cardinals, Blues, St. Louis City, Mizzou and SLU questions in Tuesday's 11 a.m. live chat.

    BenFred/Freddie, no need to look any further than Paul DeJong in the 2022 DH search. The FO will continue to tell you that his 2019 bat is coming back because they never admit defeat. Shildt will probably bat him 5th and tell you that with less wear & tear from the field his bat will reignite.
    That doesn't make sense to me. If he's here, let him play shortstop. He's good at it.
    BenFred,
    I remember Cards of old (no not that old) use to have a habit of adding guys with grit. Guys with a bit of a sandpaper edge who wouldn't hesitate to call it like it is and could help change the culture and club house of a team not performing up to expectations. I don't think I've seen that since they brought in A. J. Pierzynski in 2014. We've seen them bring in Ozuna, Goldy, and Arenado as the big names but I don't put them in that same mold.
    But we've seen Lance Lynn shown the door, and he could offer some pointed answers. While it's been denied I don't think the FO cared for Tommy Pham and his comments.
    I don't see anyone on the current team with that type of attitude or demeanor and I think the FO wants it that way. Go along to get along. If you don't we'll provide you a new home.

    I think when your manager has to come out in a press conference and say his players care says a lot about how they're being viewed based on what people see on their screen.
    It was not denied that Pham's pointedness was not appreciated by the team. Was was pushed back against, at least here, was that his tell-it-like-it-is was the sole reason he got traded. It wasn't. But I digress.
    "Effort" is always a question that comes up when a team struggles, and managers and coaches are always going to defend their players when it comes up. Because if any manager or coach admits his team isn't trying, the question quickly becomes why aren't players trying for their coach.
    I think Nolan Arenado has a fire that can fuel his teammates. We've seen it at times this season in slammed bats, snarls and all that good stuff people like to see on TV.
    I think more importantly what the Cardinals could use are players who play with an edge, not ones who bark and shout or whatever. A starting pitcher like Lance Lynn who pounds the strike zone with a come-and-hit-it-mentality. A hitter who finds some way to glue himself to the bases no matter how he has to get there -- getting a walk, getting a bunt hit, getting hit by a pitch, smacking a ball the other way. I think they are missing a true OBP guy. That's what I see this team missing this season.
    Loved your story this AM BenFred on the Rams situation. To your earlier point: "So, yes, while the blanket claim the NFL-centric media has largely ignored the story is often true, it's not always the case. And as the story gets bigger, and it will as it continues to near trial, it will have to be covered by more people." --

    What will be the trigger in your opinion that brings this more onto a national stage? Other than PFT and a Pats fan site, it isn't clear what more the national media would want to at least start talking about the mess the owners are in now and the financial implications that arise from having their records exposed.
    You better believe the NFL is telling those it can put pressure on to ignore the story. No big deal. Nothing to see there. A trial happening makes that a lot harder to ignore. A trial would be the big change, I imagine. But don't get too consumed with who is covering and who is not. That won't impact the case much.
    Ben, I was listening to some talking heads on the radio about the situation Cleveland went through years ago. The NFL caved and gave them a team. If St. Louis wins the law suite and the total damages are $3.3 billion dollars, would that money maybe go to infrastructure, Improve impoverished neighborhoods? That money could go a long way with helping improve the city. No doubt some politicians pockets will get lined.
    I'm sure there will be many suggestions for how the money should be spent, if indeed there is money to spend. A long way to go before that bridge is crossed.
  • Anything from yesterday's legal developments that surprised you?
    The play-by-play of Kroenke telling Goodell and others on a 2013 phone call that he was buying the land in California to build the stadium and the league and Rams' discussions on how to best hide that fact -- including outright lies from Goodell and Demoff shortly after -- were pretty eye opening and showed the extent all of these parties went to keep things hidden at St. Louis' expense. You can already see how the STL side is going to present this years-long timeline that has two sides. One showing what the league was saying to STL and pubic. And another what it was actually doing. I think that's going to be pretty hard for the league to explain away when it comes to arguing it didn't mislead and misrepresent to make a profit at STL's expense.
    I contend the Blues are the last legitimate team to win the Stanley Cup. A cup winner should have to play a full schedule of 82 games and thus play all the teams in the league, then four rounds of the playoffs. And our boys didn't dent the cup!
    Come on now. Tampa's legit. Maroon says so. The Cup has been beaten up before. It will survive. Every scar is a story, someone wise once told me.
    Do we know who the two franchises that voted for the Rams to stay in St. Louis are?
    Cardinals were named in court yesterday.
    Panthers is the other one that has been speculated.
    Both got a cut of the relocation money, in the end.
    BenFred there is no doubt that John Mozeliak is the public face of the St Louis Cardinals. I get that. Week after week in every chat that has to do with baseball Mozeliak is speared and roasted. My question concerns the General Manager, Michael Girsch. Isn’t the GM position supposed to be a big deal? How big of a stick does MG swing and why is he exempt from responsibility on how the season has been unfolding. Honestly, I read and watch sports probably too much and the only time I recall seeing Mr Girsch was sitting 20 rows up (fully masked) at ST games watching his team. That’s it.
    GM isn't supposed to be a big deal.
    It is a big deal.
    I've said it a million times, but singling out one member of the Cardinals front office and avoiding another entirely doesn't make much sense based on how they operate. They are not siloed. They work on things and work through things together. Criticisms of Mozeliak can be criticisms of Girsch, and vice versa. Same for praise. Mozeliak is at the top, and has the most forward-facing role over the years, so he tends to get the heat in the chats from chatters. 
    Prediction: A-Rod will be elected to the HOF next year in his first year of eligibility. The writers voting will turn themselves into pretzels defending their vote for him but not for Bonds, McGwire, etc., even though A-Rod was suspended for PEDs. The ultimate narrative will be that the writers will "forgive him" because he admitted it.

    FWIW, I say let them all in but put their transgressions on their plaques. Even with PEDs it's still very difficult to play baseball. So many were using in the era and these guys still rose to the top. The HOF should tell the story of the game.
  • I think that's where it will end up. Those who got caught and admitted use can have a disclaimer. Those who cheated and got away with it -- without getting caught or admission of use -- will know in their heart of hearts they are not being truthful.
    Hey Ben! A few years back there was some interest from both sides in a Bryce Harper signing. It didnt pan out, no worries. There has been some speculation from local writers in Philly that they could eventually move on from Harper. If that ended up being the case, could you see the Cardinals making a play for him the way they did Arenado where Philly picks up part of his remaining money (although not the fleece job Colorado agreed to!) to help facilitate that? Thanks, Max
    The Cards were never as interested in Harper as I thought they should be.
    They liked O'Neill's projections.
    The Cardinals have developed a track record of being there to catch contracts that are heavy yet discounted somewhat as a star player ages with the team that gave him the big deal. Did it with Goldschmidt. Did it with Arenado. So, it would not be wild to assume something similar could happen with another big name down the line.
    I don't think a Harper addition is imminent, though.
    Still think he would be a big star here.
    With all the money coming off the books at season's end, here is a quick revamp that should reasonably fit within the budget: Sign Trevor Story to play SS, and Nick Castellanos to DH. Trade for Trea Turner and move him back to CF. DeJong is your primary back up at all 4 IF positions or include him in trade for Turner. Bader is your 4th OF and defensive replacement late in games. Boom, Lineup issues solved for the foreseeable future. Only at the expense of Carpenter, Martinez and Miller. (Turner, Castellanos, Goldy, Arenado, Story, O'Neill, Carlson, Molina, Edman is a Contender's lineup if there ever was one).
    Story and Castellanos in addition to contracts of Arenado and Goldschmidt.
    Seems to me like a bigger payroll than the Cardinals would be interested in having.
    Nick Plummer seems to have improved under the Albert program.
    Yep. DG had a note about it in a recent Cards notebook.
    Great reporting on the lawsuit. Way back, I remember being mad that Clark Hunt had a role in helping the Rams out of the Lou. Is that still an accurate perception or am I wrong?
    Nope. Your anger appears to have been properly placed. He helped the Rams and Chargers work out their agreement. He was one of the owners who the STL side can request financial data from now to potentially set stage for punitive damages.
  • Bryce Harper rode his hype to the contract he has now. The Phillies are realizing this. St Louis should stay away from him. He can be a cancer in the clubhouse and he is a big choker when a game is on the line.
    He really seemed like a bad guy this season when he took Genesis Cabrera off the hook for nearly decapitating himself with a baseball. You've got an old, outdated narrative. Some are still clinging to the perception Harper had as a 19-year-old who had to do his learning on the fly in the majors. He's outgrown that. Some of his critics should, too.
    Do you think the Cards will call up Woodford to fill in the 5th spot? I think they should leave Oviedo in the minors before he loses his confidence.
    He's pitched more than two innings just once in Memphis since he was sent down there. Oviedo had his best start of the season his second-to-last time out. Signs entering the break seemed to suggest Oviedo would be back as Woodford continued to lengthen out. We'll see. I do think front office wants to see Woodford as a starter eventually.
    BenFred, any thoughts on the Cards draft? I see MLB is trying to take its draft on the same trajectory as the NFL draft, but I think the draftees are not known as well, except for maybe Leiters son, drafted second by the Rangers.
    I think the Mets got really lucky. Watched Rocker pitch a couple times this season. Still a bit raw but he's an impressive pitcher with a world of talent. Was really surprised he fell to No. 10. Cards' first pick was signature Cards. College pitcher. They have been good to the Cardinals in the past. Baez is intriguing. Chance that swing does some big damage, but high strikeouts will be a risk.
    Pujols would not be a bad bench player for us next year with the DH, given his performance this year. 13 HRs and 35 RBI is good production by a bench player. In other words, signing him for his last year would not just be a publicity stunt. My goodness, we are paying $18 m for a .190 hitter riding the bench.
    If he maintains the performance he's had with the Dodgers, sure.
    Expecting that might be asking too much.
    Many fans would approve.
    Not specifically about Pujols, but using the bad Carpenter contract to justify moves you want to see is a good way to argue for more bad contracts.
    The Cardinals should be trying to avoid those kind of deals, not using them as rationalizations for deals.
    Thank you for your great coverage on the Rams story. First off, if the city gets a good chunk of money, the city should have a Dave Peacock day or do something substantial to acknowledge his significant contributions in all of this. I'm pretty serious . Think about it, a well-to-do former AB top executive takes on a wild goose chase to help his city keep their NFL team and build civic pride. People thought he was stupid and criticized him for even trying . Without a legitimate new stadium proposal, the Rams legitimately leave without a valid complaint . You did the unthinkable. I thought the city and state wouldn't cooperate and your efforts would be for nothing . I desperately wanted him to be right, but I thought he was wasting his time. I was wrong. THANK YOU DAVE PEACOCK!!!

    I just knew St. Louis was going to get a raw deal if they let the Rams out of their lease, but even in my wildest dreams I never thought the Rams and the NFL was this blatant with their lies and fraud. You know, if this was you or me, there would be a criminal investigation. Cities and governments don't take kindly to those who cost them money. Stan is too loaded to touch. I never thought I would say these words - my opinion of the NFL is lower today than it has ever been. Way to accomplish the impossible Stan and Roger!!! You're in a class is your own!
  • Let's see how it plays out. Yesterday in court there was an email from Peacock mentioned by the Rams/NFL lawyers. It had to do with Peacock saying he felt Kroenke was candid about his intention to move the entire time. The defendants could make that a big deal moving forward, arguing that it was proof Peacock, the leader of the task force, was not influenced by the multiple and misleading comments made that suggested somethin different. The STL side is going to argue that discovery revealed things Peacock did not know, and it's also worth remembering there were multiple voices here. The league was saying something different. Eric Grubman was saying something different. Speaking of none of this ever reaching this point if one thing had been different, if Goodell and the league had just said as soon as the Rams won the arbitration case that there was nothing -- zilch, zero, nada -- that STL could do to keep the Rams from moving if they wanted to and the league approved it, then this case would have probably never even had legs.
    How would you rank these 3 iconic sports plays in recent STL sports history? Mike Jones tackle, David Freese triple and Pat Maroon OT winner.
    3. Maroon
    2. Jones
    1. Freese
    Good one. How'd I do?
    When a player is injured or declines to participate in the all star game. Are they still technically labeled as an "allstar" for that season?
    Just depends on how you choose to define it.
    Selected for, yes.
    Played in, no.
    Started in, no.
    Molina's Baseball Reference has already been updated: 10-time All-Star.
    Ben, I have long felt that a documentary, like ESPN 30 for 30, giving us the behind closed doors look at the Rams move TO STL would be enlightening. We should have gotten an expansion team but we would always have plan B with James Orthwein moving the Patriots to STL. Kraft put and end to that notion. The NFL has always had it in for STL and they wouldn't be in this mess now if they had done the right thing and awarded STL an expansion team. Any thoughts on how that all played out and brought us to this point?
    The NFL relocation shell game, and its many chapters, would make a fascinating book. I told Wickersham he should write it yesterday. I'd buy. STL has had a fascinating vantage point of it over the years. Painfully so.
    Would it be fair to say that Army and Berube are evidently not on the same page strategically? From all signs, Berube seems to value size grittiness and forecheck over all other aspects when evaluating a player. Meanwhile Army swaps out Berube-style players petro and edmundson for small puck movers like Faulk and Krug, loses Maroon's size without replacing him and adds Mike Hoffman to the team who is completely uninterested in playing Berube's style of game. Army seems to like his skilled puck moving speed demons, which is attractive these days, but it wholly goes against Berube's coaching style. What gives this season and in the long term? Who will the Blues become - Army's scorers or Berube's Grinders?
    I think you nailed it. It's why I've described the Blues as looking caught in the middle sine the Cup win. Not fast enough to keep up with Colorado. Not burly enough to go toe to toe with Vegas. And it turns out neither of those teams was the world beater some assumed. I think the Blues need to pick a lane and skate in it. If Berube's way is The Way, build him a team that can play that way. I don't think he is anti speed or scoring, but he wants an all-around buy-in. A Tkachuk trade would be great for that reason. It would signal a commitment to a plan.
  • Where do you think Kofi ends up? Do you have any idea how teams are showing recruits the possible dollars they could earn at their universities? Is there any rules around how they project those estimates that you are aware of? Seems like a program could really mislead prospects with the assumptions in their estimates, but I guess that's what the transfer portal is for, right?
    Kentucky would be my guess, considering the coaching migration that has taken place between those two programs.
    The NIL stuff is not supposed to be a recruiting incentive.
    (Insert laughter here.)
    What that means is maybe a coach can't sit down with Mom and Pop and walk Junior through his NIL options.
    It won't stop the teammates -- or others -- from doing it. And that's not the worst thing in the world. If a grocery store in Kentucky wants to be the official store of Kofi, I'm sure there's a store in Illinois that might be interested in matching.
    Randy Flores has been doing a great job at drafting the past few years. Hats off to him. I really hope he stays with the organization long term though I can imagine teams trying to poach him
    Those in the know believe he's destined for good things in baseball, whether it's with the Cardinals as a climbing front office member or somewhere else. Can't imagine the Cards would lose him without a fight.
    Any chance STL hosts a world cup qualifier in the dome or Busch? Too bad the soccer stadium won't be ready in time, or will it.
    I asked around about this today but didn't get much of an answer. Let me get a better read on it and I'll circle back next week? It's a good question. That said, I gotta jet folks. Thanks for your time. A lot of very long comments today that were not questions, but I did read them and appreciate hearing your takes. Didn't want you to think they went unnoticed. Have a good week.
Powered by Platform for Live Reporting, Events, and Social Engagement