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

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

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

    What concern is there for Mikolas?
    His schedule has been shifted around some in part do to the feedback they are getting on his arm/elbow. The team says it's nothing to sweat. History suggests to not always buy that line from the team. We will know soon enough.
    Who has best bullpen in baseball and how close are the cardinals?
    Many are still taking shape.
    The White Sox seem to have a strong one.
    The Cards might not have the best in the division, as the Brewers could have one of the best.
    But the Cards pitch their way into the conversation.
    Few teams have heat like Hicks can bring. Reyes, if he trends reliever due to innings limit, was very effective last season. Throw Carlos Martinez in there -- and I might -- and there's a really good three-armed attack at the back end, plus a bunch of depth. Even if Martinez is the starter, that means Ponce and Gant are available for relief, along with guys like Helsley, Cabrera and others. Thompson and Liberatore could be in there too at some point.
    The Cardinals don't have the proven arms that some teams do.
    But you can see why they could have the depth and effectiveness a lot of teams would love to have.
    I am a bit tired of PD writers being apologists for the front office and players. You and DG specifically. We dumb, ticket-buying fans know the club is perpetually half-in. We know certain talented starters should up-shut and put more than a half-season before going Colin Kapernick.

    Hope is a bad business strategy. Cards could be better. Asking the PD writers to represent the readers and fans too. Thanks for your consideration.
    Trading for Arenado in an offseason where most teams sit on their hands is half-in?
    I don't understand that logic.
    Yes the Cards could get better. What team couldn't? The Dodgers could get better. Any team could get better.
    The Cardinals got better this offseason.
    I don't think they are one of the best teams in baseball on paper right now.
    I do think they could be one of the best 6-10 teams, and one of the best 6-10 teams have a decent chance of doing some good things.
    Check out recent World Series for proof. The Rays and Nationals come to mind.
    Please point me toward proof of me being a front-office apologist.
    It certainly wasn't when I was banging on the team all offseason to improve the offense on top of bringing back Molina and Wainwright.
    I'm not going to carry the torch for the shut-up-and-play crowd. Ever. Sorry.
    Do you think one of the reasons Missouri, St. Louis or Kansas City, being such a conservative state is one of the reasons the NBA has avoided the state?
    No, I think it's been the lack of a deep-pocketed owner who is determined to bring the league to a city inside the state. And the fact the league already has footholds in Indianapolis and Memphis.
  • Follow up, if you are Carlson and you are seeing Bader and O’Neil playing the first two games with the regulars but shildt sits you, wouldn’t you kinda take that the wrong way also?
    He started the first game. Today's game is just the second. I imagine Carlson is coping just fine. The Cardinals did trade Dexter Fowler away to help clear what will almost certainly be a regular starting spot for him.
    Explain to my why Nolan Gorman will be different from Tyler O'Neill at the plate? Both swing as hard a possible all the time, strike out a lot and hit the ball a mile when they do make contact.
    I'd start by pointing to the age/experience difference. Nolan Gorman is 20 years old, five years younger than O'Neill. There can be a wide range in the production provided by players who share similar skillsets, and younger players and first-round draft picks like Gorman tend to have a higher ceiling when it comes to their ability to adapt and evolve. Their strengths tend to get stronger. Their weaknesses tend to get fewer and far between. Always? No. But Gorman is on a fast track and his brief minor league career has been encouraging.
    Has Arenado said anything about where he prefers to bat in the lineup? He hit 3rd in Colorado. I personally think Goldy should hit 2nd (higher OBP) and Arenado 3rd. DeJong will do better batting 4th with Arenado ahead of him and Carlson behind him.
    Arenado has toggled between 3/4 for most of his Colorado career. Results between the two spots have been pretty similar. I think we are going to see a lot of Goldschmidt hitting third and Arenado at cleanup. That's how I would do it. I have not asked Areando what he prefers. If he has answered that one, I have not heard it. I think Carlson's speed and switch-hitting should be used ahead of Goldy and Arenado, not after them. Carlson could be leadoff answer. I would not be surprised if he winds up there if Edman's OBP lags.
    What’s the level of concern with Mikolas? And I heard there was a mention that Kim was behind schedule, too?
    Kim is starting Wednesday's game, so that's good news.
    Mikolas is scheduled for another side session in the near future as the team is keeping him in controlled setting as he eases back from that forearm issue that kept him out last season.
    Any time a starter coming off an injury to his throwing arm is having his spring schedule readjusted, it's wise to have a relatively significant level of concern.
    The Cardinals are saying this is all precautionary.
    We have heard that with players before, only to find out it's more serious.
    We'll see.
    Can the Cards/Shildt move on from Carpenter? He's leading off and playing second today. Seems that an expensive .200 hitter will continue to get legacy at-bats at the expense of the present and future?
  • They traded for an every-day starter at his position.
    He's a bench bat unless the DH comes into play in NL games, or he outplays Edman.
    He's going to get chances in spring to prove his bat should be in the lineup.
    The Cardinals hope he makes them find a place for him.
    They're going to give him chances to do that this spring. 
  • Carpenter, 2 hole one day, lead off the next. Its spring training, but man, this gets old real quick. The Birds start losing credibility when doing silly things like this. Its actually ignorant. And I don't like using that word or use it lightly.
    Let's revisit when games that count are being played.
    If Carpenter is hitting leadoff or second then, we will holler and shout and I'll be right there with you.
    The Cardinals are paying the guy a big chunk of money
    .They're going to give him chances in exhibition play to see if he can help them.
    That's not ignorant. It's obvious.
    This may be an unconventional take on Carpenter, but I feel like the most recent extension is tarnishing his legacy with fans. And that falls on the FO two-fold. First, he had an option that would have paid him for 1 year and they chose to extend him 2 years. Second, that extension has dictated his endless opportunities and he hasn't performed. I am not a big Carpenter fan but he isn't writing his own name in the line-up and batting himself in the middle of the order. I think the best thing this team can do is turn the spotlight elsewhere and just let him see if he can hit or not.
    They are trying to do just that -- see if he can hit or not.
    These games don't count.
    They played seven innings today.
    They rolled over an inning during the game yesterday.
    They're exhibition games.
    Perfect time to find out if a guy can hit.
    With a shortened draft and contracted MiLB teams, do you foresee any Cards draft strategy changes in July? Proven college performers? High risk / high reward high schoolers? Value based college seniors with no leverage? All of the above?
    I think the biggest difference will not be the kind of players selected, but how they are selected. There's been a shortage of recent results to analyze, and an increased value placed upon figuring out how to project players whose seasons were scrambled by the pandemic. Valuable data has been diminished by the virus, so that means more risk/reward for teams during such a time of unknown. Teams with the best reads on players that have less info out there will win the pandemic drafts, and they could face a tougher time pulling those players out of high schools than they have be in the past, considering the uncertainty surrounding the minor leagues. We saw that play out locally, where Christian Little of CBC chose to go to Vanderbilt to let some of the uncertainty play out.
    More likely to happen - NBA returns to St. Louis or the NHL leaves St. Louis?
    I don't think the NHL will be leaving STL.
    Certainly not as long as Stillman is in charge.
    Plus, STL has become a premier city for the NHL as evidenced by the All-Star game, Winter Classic, record-breaking fan events and more.
    You all know what it will take for the NBA needle to move.
    We've talked about it countless times.
    NBA would have to want to add another midwest team.
    Most importantly an owner would need to emerge to push the issue.
    Until then, no chance.
    I think Kim might end up being the weak link in the rotation. His max was about 5 innings last year and he was up to almost 100 pitches by then. I just think MLB hitters are better than Korean hitters and will expose him in time. I hope I am wrong, though.
    I'd be more likely to agree if last season was not such a strange, pandemic-shortened season played only against NL Central teams and the Padres. But it's not like the league got a great read on KK. 
    He made eight starts including the postseason.
    The most starts he made against any divisional opponent was two.
    He's still very much a new look, and he tends to make hitters who are unfamiliar with his stuff look uncomfortable.
    Opponents slashed .205/.269/.331 against him last season.
    Sign me up for more of that.
    He's not going to be a deep-into-the-game guy very often.
    Six innings or so and out, then hand it to the bullpen.
    That's just fine for this team, because the bullpen should be good.
    For the remainder of spring training Schildt needs to write "this is only a test" in front of Carpenters name on the lineup card then everyone won't be so concerned if he's batting leadoff or second. Wish the NWS had done the same this morning.
    I do understand the fear fans have about Shildt jamming Carpenter in there if his swing does not justify it. I do. But, we have to wait and see if it actually happens. At least we should. Kind of like getting all bent out of shape about the lack of a move this offseason. It looked a bit premature when the Arenado addition came. If Carpenter can't hit a lick in spring and he's hitting second or leadoff in game one, I'll be the one hollering the loudest. Trust me.
    If Carpenter has trouble getting going this spring would the Cards consider asking him to spend the season as a roving coach within the organization with his same pay or is that a no-no to MLB Union?
    If he can't hit, he sits. If he can't hit to the point he can't be a decent bench bat, I guess the Cards could pay him to go home though that would be a surprise for them. Those are the options.
    The Cardinals seem to want the DH this year to get Carpenter a chance to hit. I say that is a disadvatage. We would then have a .180 hitter as DH vs other teams having a legit bat in the lineup. Better for us if everyone's pitchers hit so we're not at a disadvantage. Of course this assumes that Carpenter performs at his 2019-2020 levels, but why would we think otherwise? What say you?
    What they want has little to do with it. That rule, if it comes, will be an agreement between the players' union and the owners. They are going to move Carpenter around a lot this spring -- DH, second base, up and down the order -- while they evaluate his swing. If they like what they see in his swing, he could find reps at DH -- if it comes -- or second base, or off the bench. Some of that depends on how Edman plays. On how Gorman forces the issue. Lots of things. If Carpenter is a .180 hitter then he shouldn't be the DH if there is a DH. The fifth outfielder would be a better option to DH then. But yes, the Cardinals are hoping Carpenter gives them reasons to use him. They're paying him a lot of money and would like to get something out of that deal, on top of just wanting him to succeed.
    I don’t understand why everyone is jumping on Carp. He has been a great Cardinal and they are not paying him. Give him a chance.
  • It's almost as if he's getting more heat as a bench guy than he was as the every-day starter, which is a little odd. Perhaps because he's going to be the piece in the lineup that changes most often this spring? It's a natural talking point when the day's lineup rolls out. I get that. But I'll save my hollering until the games count and I see what role he has or has not earned then.
    Sheesh. You've given two responses today where you aren't fully buying what the team says about a player's health. Careful. You're jeopardizing your apologist status!
    My bad. As soon as a whopping three Grapefruit League games are played, I'll start firing everyone :) 
    Is Jeff Albert on the hot seat? And is it crazy to say we could see Jim Edmonds on the dugout rather than the booth sometime soon? I love hearing him with Danny Mac, but would love him even more if we could help us get some hits
    He certainly should be. The lineup has been improved by the addition of Arenado. If the lineup does not improve, or only improves a little, it's time to make a change. The idea that Albert's emphasis is on more than just the major leagues is hard to use as a defense of Albert when last season included no minor league games and the lineup still lagged. The talent improved. The lineup's production should improve. And if the lineup gets better and the young outfielders answer the challenge, and they all point to Albert as the reason, I'll will change my tune.
    As I've said before, I'm not convinced Edmonds wants the full-time responsibility of being the hitting coach. He likes having a relationship with the guys and they do go to him for help -- which might say something about what they are or are not getting from Albert -- but Edmonds has a pretty sweet setup and his interests are varied. That can't be the case if he's grinding it out as a hitting coach or assistant hitting coach. 
    If the Cards were to strengthen their rotation which one of these might sincerely interest the most? Porcello, Gio Gonzalez, Odorizzi, Cole Hamels?
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