Join columnist Jeff Gordon for his live STL sports chat at 1 p.m. Friday

Join columnist Jeff Gordon for his live STL sports chat at 1 p.m. Friday

Bring your Cards, Blues, Mizzou, SLU and MLS questions and comments, and talk to columnist Jeff Gordon in his weekly live chat.

    Bobo's back and, as usual, folks have come in early. So let's go!
    Jeff, I grew weary a long time ago of the blabber that spews from the Cards front office. But have you ever seen a more bizarre press conference considering the timing, tone, and lack of transparency on the Shildt firing? Shildt likely deserved better, and the paper should be fuming that the brilliant John Mozaliak won’t allow it to tell the whole story to one of the best fan bases in baseball. Thoughts?
    That episode was an unmitigated PR disaster. When a president of baseball operations fires a highly successful field manager without much of an explanation, that raises questions by fans, other employees up and down the franchise's food chain and folks across the industry. That is especially true when the field manager is famously loyal to "The Cardinal Way" with nearly two decades of of exemplary service.
    I've seen lots of firing in 35-plus years in this market and that had to be the strangest of them all, both in terms of the actual decision and how it was presented to the public. 
    In your opinion. Who's had a better career. Jon Lester or Adam Wainwright?
    I think its pretty even except Waino played for only one team.
    Great question. Lester has done a bit more in the postseason -- 9-7, 2.51 ERA in 26 games, including 22 starts -- so that gives him the nod. But Wainwright seems to have plenty left in the tank, so he could still bolster his case.
    Do you think the Cardinals are better off with arrogant condescending aloof Mo as the only voice of the organization?
    Yeah, the Cardinals might want to look at that. Given the PR fallout of the Shildt firing, the team should work hard to make the managerial hiring news conference a more reassuring performance. Bill DeWitt Sr. should plan on speaking at some length about the franchise's goals and it would be nice to see GM Michael Girsch start carrying more of the PR load.
    DeWitt clearly presented the Shildt firing as a Mo decision, but is it really more about DeWitt? In 2007, DeWitt created a tense work dynamic between Jocketty and Luhnow and fired Jocketty. Then, and now, it appears DeWitt won’t tolerate disagreement over what he wants as owner. What do you see about the depth of DeWitt’s involvement in Shildt’s dismissal and his efforts to keep his own hands clean and let Mo take the heat? Thanks, Jeff.
    It seems obvious that DeWitt wasn't thrilled to see a manager fired after he led the team to a 17-game winning streak and postseason play while overcoming myriad challenges. That's not how he prefers to do business, so he basically said this decision is on Mozeliak. While DeWitt prefers continuity, he also maintains a chain of command. He has enough confidence in Mozeliak to allow him to make that call. Given the team's overall success under Mozeliak, that is understandable.
  • Hello, Mr. Gordon. Thanks for the chat. A lot of Cardinal fans are fantasizing about the team signing one of the free-agent shortstops like Seager, Story, or Correa. But, Mozeliak's comments recently don't appear to make that likely. If the Cardinals do insist on signing one of the shortstops, there is one that should be to Mo's liking -- Pete Kozma is a free agent again (heavy sarcasm).
  • Given the job Edmundo Sosa did after taking over as the starter, it would be an easy call to give him the chance to handle that job next season. After underestimating the potential of Luke Voit and Randy Arozarena, perhaps Mozeliak is less inclined to dismiss a potential internal solution. If Sosa can do the job on entry level money, that frees up budget space to invest in pitching.
    The team could also give Paul DeJong one more chance to get back on track. The alternative will be to sell low on him with some sort of trade.
    But the flip side is this: This team may never have a better chance to add a high-end shortstop than this winter. As luck would have it, there are several up for bidding.
  • Jeff, does anyone in these playoffs know how to pitch to Chris Taylor, one of the worst hitters in mlb at the end of the regular season?
  • That's the beauty of the playoffs. Teams can assemble a powerhouse roster, but come the playoffs all kinds of odd things happen -- such as Chris Taylor channeling his inner Pete Kozma.
    Mr. Gordo,

    Great Tipsheet column yesterday!

    ESPN’s Bradford Doolittle’s reference was excellent:
    “Shildt's .559 winning percentage is better than the following St. Louis skippers:
    Tony La Russa, Whitey Herzog, Red Schoendienst, Joe Torre, Branch Rickey and Miller Huggins.”
    It puts Mike’s managerial achievements in a unique historical perspective.

    Consider the 17 players Mo “stuck” Mike with last year:
    Justin Williams, Austin Dean, John Nagowski, Scott Hurst, Seth Elledge, Brandon Waddell, Johan Oviedo, Jake Woodford, Max Moroff, Roel Ramirez, Angel Rondon, Brandon Dickson, Tyler Webb, Daniel Poncedeleon, Bernardo Flores, Jr., Lane Thomas, and Matt Carpenter (who was KEPT ALL SEASON-Mind Blowing).

    For the record, I have “philosophical differences” with each of the 17 roster moves!
    If Shildt was upset that it took so long to upgrade the roster -- which is one theory about his rift with Mozeliak -- then his discomfort was justified. Teams like San Francisco and Milwaukee upgraded on the fly and won division titles as a result of their aggression.
    Shildt did a better job in 2021 with circumstances he faced than Mozeliak did with the opportunites he had. DeWitt sided with Mozeliak due to the whole chain-of-command thing, but you could certainly argue that the better employee ended up on the street.
    So it often goes in big business . . .    
    Mr. Gordo,
    Thank you for today’s chat!

    I need some Gordo therapy! I am a former college player and former high school baseball coach. I know and love the game. I’ve been a loyal Cardinal fan for 58 years. That may be coming to an end……

    I have second-guessed some of Mike Shildt’s moves, but would score his decision-making in the 93-95 percentile range. I would score his integrity, honesty, and humility in the 98-100 range.

    I have second-guessed many of Mo’s trades, extensions, and FA signings as well. I would score his decision-making in 70-75 percentile range. He has made $150M in bad signings and unnecessary extensions. I would score his integrity, honesty, and humility in the 60-65 range. His failure to take responsibility for his own mistakes hurts his image with fans.

    The 17 players Mo “stuck” Shildt with from Spring Training-June and failure to respond in a timely manner to the pitching injuries would have gotten most POBOs fired.

    Thank you for the session…….
    To me previous point . . .
  • What's up Gordzonga! Did Jimmy tell you I met him in the PB at the Coyotes game? I met Pamger and JR too lots of fun. Jimmy is great. You might want to give him an extra 30 minutes to get those game stories in you're stressing him out!
    We are not fans of late starts! Unlike a lot of newspapers, the Post-Dispatch still runs its presses late enough to get most game stories in print. But those games out West are killers.
    Remember that our beat scribes will always have a full game report on
    Thank you again for your time. I think most of us were giodsmacked by the Mike Shildt firing. At some point, don’t both sides need to offer a fuller explanation to clarify the confusion? If i were a potential manager i would desire an set of criteria i would judged by. And if i were a club i would want to know why winning in St Louis led to Shildt dismissal. Won’t these explanations need to be advanced?
    Job expectation should be part of the news conference that presents the next manager. That would be a great time to explore the methodology behind baseball decisions. Executives may believe they don't owe fans that explanation, but fans don't owe the franchise any of their hard-earned dollars. They choose to buy tickets and merchandise when the believe in the team they follow. They are more likely to believe in a team that engages them.
    As for the fired manager, it's always best to stay on the high road while looking for another job. Openly discussing disagreements with management is a good way not to get hired by another management team.
    Good afternoon and thanks for the chat. What is the tentative timetable for Sundquist's return to the Blues?
    He has been skating with the team and he's eligible to come out of long-term injured reserve after 10 games. That fits with the general expectation of a November return. But until he is practicing full-title with the team and taking bumps, the team won't have a more specific idea.
    Since Petro signed with Vegas he plays against the Blues with more anger then he used to. He's got a chip on his shoulder against us. Then he doesn't show up after the game to answer to the media. His turnover to Krug cost Vegas the game. And last year I remember when Kyrou made him look bad on another turnover. Why is he being such a big baby? Going after Schenn when he blew it with that turnover! Schenn did not hit him hard at all. Something is going on!
    That's being a bit hard on Pietrangelo. Schenn took a pretty good run at him. Also, the Golden Knights are in a tough spot due to injuries and that might have those guys on edge. They lost two of their first three games while getting outscored 12-7.
    Gordo you took a well deserved sabbatical from your weekly chat last Friday and right about the time the Cardinals announced their big news. Stealing a line from Kill Bill Volume 2 which R best applies to how you felt about missing the chat?: Regret or Relief? Thanks
    That was a crazy end of the week. Any time there is big news I would rather be working than not working, but that was a pre-scheduled break and I was otherwise engaged.
    No doubt, that would have been an especially spirited chat . . . 
  • Jeff, who do you see as the front runner for the Cardinals' manager?
    Oliver Marmol was the most involved in the minute-to-minute game management last season, so he might have the edge on Stubby Clapp. For me, the wild card is Matt Holliday. That would be PR gold -- if it worked.
    Does Mozelak owe the 3.4 million fans who come through the turnstiles each normal season a better explanation of Schildt’s firing than “philosophic differences”? Seems to me like this is another Mo power struggle just like the one engineered 15 years ago when Walt Jocketty was exiled to Cincinnati. Maybe this is just a coverup for choosing Dylan Carlson over Randy Arozarena and Adolis Garcia. Arozarena had 20 at bats with the Cardinals and Garcia 17 before Mo traded Randy and sold Adolis. Seems like a small sample size to make this decision. I think Arozarena stands a better chance to win ALROY than Carlson does to win NLROY.
    If you are betting on Dylan Carlson to fail, that might be a bad bet. Maybe Dylan will plateau at his current level, but I doubt it. Carlson is just turning 23. Arozarena will turn 27 before next season and Garcia will turn 29. What will Carlson look like when he is 27 or 29? Given his ability to switch hit and his rapid progress to this point, I'd bet on Carlson to continue his progression.
    Jeff you have already answered this question (virtually identical) extremely well from Jack so no need to comment further but I just wanted to quickly add my 2 cents. To fire a loyal employee (really anybody) of 18 years by PHONE goes way beyond disrespectful to despicable. I realize the POBO and team owner are like the 1000lb gorilla and can do whatever they want but they should be ashamed for the way it was handled. Thanks for allowing me to comment.
    Hey, Jeff. Jake Walman is playing well for the Blues. Is there any chance they trade Bortuzzo to open up playing time for Mikkola and/or promote Scott Perunovich? Thanks.
    This team needs Bortuzzo's size and combativeness in the mix. I really like his pairing with Walman, who can skate the puck out of danger and into the offensive zone. What seems problematic is pairing two offensive defensemen like Krug and Faulk at even strength. So the overall defensive mix still seems off. Dealing Bortuzzo would worsen that, because Mikkola's has been consistent enough with his zone exits to play regularly.
    Will the cardinals keep the wild young pitchers like Genesis Cabrera, Jordan Hicks, and Ryan Helsley over Luis Garcia, TJ McFarland, Jon Lester and AJ Happ? The latter 4 saved the season in the last 2 months that the first 3 had the team hovering around .500 the first 4 months. I know I’m supposed to be dazzled by the first three’s blazing fastballs, but there’s something to be said by the way the last 4 helped to lead the team into postseason even if it only lasted one game. Had the last 4 been there for the entire season, the seven games with the Brewers in the last 2 weeks might have been for the Central division championship and not the meaningless games they turned out to be.
    I can see Hicks spending much if not all of next season at Triple-A while adapting to a starting role. Helsley did a nice job stranding runners this season, so I can see him and Cabrera back in the bullpen for another try. But I can also see both Garcia and McFarland there too after the season-saving work. As for Happ and Lester, the return of Wainwright, Flaherty, Hudson, Mikolas and Reyes as a potential rotation leaves space for one proven starter to press Reyes and perhaps another veteran for insurance. Both Lester and Happ fit in well, so management has to weigh their return (if they both intend to play on) against what will hit the market.
  • Gordo, don’t you think Mo should give fans a better explanation for Shildt’s firing? I know he is not legally required to do so, but in the interest of transparency and good public relations?
    I agree, as noted previously, and I bet he will work harder on the PR front when the team names the next skipper.
    Jeff how does the signing of Luther Burden compare with the unexpected signing of Dorial Green-Beckham by Missouri years ago? Will he mean more to the program by his play on the field or aiding signing other top recruits? Thanks and I look forward to your comment.
    At this point, Burden might have more value with his ability to attract talent -- especially transfers who can help immediately -- than his ability to score touchdowns. Mizzou football was trending down this season with its defense getting steamrolled. The Tigers will need a major reload for 2022 and Burden's commitment will show others than this program can still move forward under Eli Drinkwitz.
    In what NLCS did Pete Kozma hit 3 homeruns in a single game? He got a clutch hit in the 9th inning of game 5 of the 2012 NODS vs the Nats. He may still be booed anytime he shows up in DC, but not comparable to Taylor’s 3 homeruns in last night’s game?
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