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.

    Sorry if this has already been covered. Coach Drink has played an injured quarterback two years in a row without a solid backup. This seems like a good argument for bringing in a good offensive coordinator because Drink is not one.
    I think it's fair to say Brady Cook probably played well enough this past season in practice (which we did not see) and games (which we did) to let Drinkwitz defend the notion that Cook gave the Tigers the best chance to win.
    But did he play so well Horn barely deserved a chance to play?
    I don't think so, and that could bite the Tigers if Horn needs to be the guy next season.
    He could have benefitted from some non-starter playing time this season.
    Just like Cook could have last season, when Bazelak was limping through the finish line.
    Ben,

    I know you had some reservations about the new XFL regime, I for one was excited about XFL 3.0. I am starting to get frustrated. The new season is weeks away, and they have no schedule. I am planning a trip down to STL from MN to go to the first home game, but can't without knowing when that will be. The whole thing has been a haphazard undertaking. Should Battlehawks fans be worried?
    The league has had some trouble finalizing stadium agreements for some of the non-STL teams. That's been the hold up on the schedule announcement. Home opener likely in March.
    Re: my comment, I hope it didn’t come off as me yelling cause I wasn’t. Just stating facts. I guess I’ll help you on the DeJong front. Derrick, Gordo also seem to struggle with the fans point most likely because they’re reporters not fans. The fact of the matter is, he’s not very good at baseball lately. And if he’s on the roster, which it seems he will be, he WILL be used. Most likely as a bench bat, because there’s 4 GG’s already in the infield. So that’s the view. DeJong as a bench bat. The $9 million cost doesn’t help the view. There’s better than .160 avg available. And if your an STL institution, which they promote and prey on, they should do better. No harm to DeJong personally at all.
    I'm not struggling to see the picture. Promise. I'm aware of his decline and understand the angst. And I'm not even predicting he changes it around. I've argued he would probably be better off with a fresh start somewhere else. I'm just suggesting that, when highlighting the players the team is putting a lot of faith in despite shaky recent performances, why not stick with guys who are going to really need to be key pieces? There are plenty. Wainwright. Flaherty. O'Neill. Carlson. Matz. These guys are all going to have a lot more impact, good or bad, on the season than DeJong, who has lost his starting shortstop job to Edman. DeJong is not starting the season in a relied-upon role. He's starting the season -- if he does start the season with the team -- as a reserve unless something happens to Edman or Donovan. If your argument is the team needs better reserves, fair enough. The argument that they need a better addition to the rotation and a better left-handed bat seems more significant to me. If the Cardinals pay DeJong to walk away today, and do nothing else, they're no better because of that decision, unless some addition follows it. At the worst, DeJong is an overpaid bench guy. That doesn't make or break your season in any way shape or form. The attention paid to his place on the team (for now) is no longer matching up with his impact on the team. That's all.
    BenFred -

    How closely do you see the Blues starting lineup tonight resembling the one we lead into next season with?
    Hopefully a trade-deadline sell-off of expiring contracts could net some return that factors into that mix. And it does seem things are now destined to go that direction.
  • Seems like throughout the chat you're in agreement and upgrade is needed and trade is the most likely outcome. Are you hearing of any targets or have any players you think the Cardinals should target? I know Pablo Lopez was floated around last year. Things have been quiet since Contreras.
    A trade for a solid starter and a reasonable buy on a left-handed hitter who is running out of time to find a team would be a great way to wrap up the offseason, even if the final moves click into place at spring training. Less than that will be underwhelming and leave some significant question marks. Pablo Lopez would be the one for me. Spring training needs/surprises can lube trade wheels, too.
    Ben,

    Doesn't the XFL season start February 18th. So the first home game would be weeks away from that? Wouldn't they want a packed dome to be a highlight of the first week of games??
    I think BHawks will be playing their first few games on the road.
    So what do realistic trade targets look like for O'Reilly and Tarasenko assumming they come back healthy?
    Hopefully decent to high prospects and/or high draft pick(s). That's the move you make if you're leaning forward into a retool after betting on the young upside of Kyrou and Thomas. The injuries to O'Reilly and Tarasenko should be healed in time to show they're capable of helping out in a rental capacity, and their track record is appealing as long as they rebound from these hand and foot setbacks. Both are champions with plenty of playoff experience.
    Hey, Ben!
    If your information is correct, and the Cards are asking Willson Contreras to start 120-140 games a year behind the plate, then someone has kinda lost their mind. Because that's not at all his history. Only twice in his career has Contreras started more than 92 games behind the plate. Two years ago it was 122, and five years ago, when he was a kid of 25, he started 123. Asking a catcher to work distinctly harder in his 30's than he did in his 20's... well, the finish to that sentence is both sad and profane.

    My question, good scribe: If Hudson is very effective in Spring Training and Matz is the opposite, do you think Dakota can earn the final starting slot? Or is a healthy Matz automatically in, regardless of performance, because of his contract? Thanks for chatting!
    That was the range Contreras and the Cardinals talked about, per Contreras' agent. It's part of what the Cardinals and Contreras talked about when they went down to Florida to meet with him. Mozeliak said he wanted to hear firsthand that Contreras wanted to be a catcher, not a sometimes catcher, not a DH, not a bounce-around guy who could catch. A catcher. Contreras said that is what he wants, and walked the Cardinals through how he prepares and will continue to prepare himself to answer that challenge. We'll see how it goes, of course, but both sides have been pretty adamant that he's here to be the primary catcher, from Marmol to Mozeliak, to Contreras. I will disagree with the sad and profane labels, at least until we see how he holds up and how he performs. It's possible the Cubs should have had him catching more.
    The Cardinals signed Matz, and if he's healthy I think he will start the season in the rotation. If he doesn't perform there in games that count, then you have to adjust. His health is more of a concern than his performance, to me. He's relatively reliable as a mid-rotation arm as long as he's healthy.
    Whoever is wanting Bauer to c ome to the Cardinals needs to check themselves as human beings. He is reprehensible.
    Someone will give him a shot. I just don't see it being the Cardinals, and I can see why. They don't want or need that kind of baggage.
    There is a lot of attention on Travis Ford's seat potentially being hot at SLU, but what about Chris May? His hiring record has been a mixed bag, with extreme highs and extreme lows, and he's had a long tenure. With the recent drama surrounding pushing out the band director, it seems all is not great in the AD at SLU.
    The soccer teams are churning along at a high level. There's promise for women's basketball under a new coach. The champions center was a big win. No offense to band, but it should not impact an AD's job status. Hiring Ford was smart. He has improved the program. The question that could come next is, is there another hoops hire that takes it even higher? I don't think May is rushing to wrestle with that, and wants to see how this season plays out first, but when the season everyone thought should be the big one gets off the rails like this, you have to wonder.
    I hope this does not come off as insensitive, as I only hope for the best for Damar Hamlin and his family. The NFL and the players made the right decision. It seems, however, that the NFL does not have a policy for these type of emergency situations. They seemed to be reacting on the fly. It seems clear that the teams will have to play the game to be fair for all teams, but the NFL should have a contingency plan in place. It’s not baseball. Additionally, when they do play, do they start the game over or begin at the time play was stopped? It would seem unfair to start the game over.
    The NFL does have a policy for what to do when things get off the rails in a major way. It hands the calls over to the commissioner. Whether it's settling beef with owners or deciding how to progress (or not) after an emergency, it's Goodell's call, and presented as such in league guidelines.
    Gotta run, folks. Thanks for a lively discussion and debate. Same time/place next week. Sign up for the newsletter if you have not yet. Thanks! 

    St. Louis news, sports & entertainment newsletters

    STLtoday.comRead the latest news, sports, business and entertainment headlines from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch - delivered straight to your email.
Powered by Platform for Live Reporting, Events, and Social Engagement