The Cardinals have developed plenty of outfielders. Colby Rasmus had a good career. Oscar Taveras was on the cusp of hitting big. Tommy Pham has been highly productive when healthy. Stephen Piscotty is pretty solid. The Cardinals acquired Randal Grichuk as a Double-A player and developed him. Oscar Mercado broke out big last season before taking a step back this season. And most independent analysts expect Dylan Carlson to be a good everyday player.
Coaches can tell a kid exactly what pitchers are going to do to them. Either they adjust and hit the ball or they don't. Fans always want to fire the hitting coach. Usually the problem is the hitters just aren't good enough.
Fans are tormented by the fact that last year's team won 91 games in a good Central Division and then beat a very good Atlanta team in the playoffs. It ruined their gloom-and-doom narrative. And fans will be really upset if the Cardinals pull it together and slip into this expanded playoff bracket.
These days there are lots of guys pitching backward, as they say. But the big problem is -- at the risk of getting too technical here -- is that many Cardinals are not good big league hitters. There is a lot of above-average, average and below-average, but not much in the way of good hitting.
Ozuna might have been miscast as a cleanup hitter here, but the Cardinals would love to have the same production he enjoyed for his two years here. As for Voit, he never got sustained at bats here. He got that in New York because of injuries and he ran (or rather hit) with that opportunity.
No, because the other playoff teams are quite capable to losing games as well.
I see the Cardinals adding a few Brad Miller types next year to get more proven hitting. Maybe there is a pitching-for-hitting trade that lands a good hitter, but not a Nolan Arenado. But, yes, fiscal restraint will be a real thing for the Cardinals. The franchise lost $140 million in gate revenue this year and it could take years to get revenues back to where they were.
The Cardinals have $100 million committed to players next season even if they don't sign Wainwright, Molina or Brad Miller, don't pick up Wong's option and they don't have to pick up Andrew Miller's option. That $100 million doesn't players headed to arbitration, like Jack Flaherty, John Gant and Jack Flaherty. Given that the likely desire to cut payroll is the face of pandemic losses and the answer is "not much" when it comes to spending on new talent.
Obviously gaining Wainwright was an all-timer on the trade side. Jason Marquis was a great add as well and Ray King proved useful in his shorter stint.
Did not see it, but he kicked dirt on the plate after rounding the bases? Well-played sir. As we noted earlier, the balls-and-strikes work of umpires this season has been all over the place. Bring on the robots.
The Cardinals won the 2006 World Series with an 83-victory team, then missed the playoffs three of the next four years. So this is similar to that. Back in the day the Cardinals were able to trade for a Scott Rolen or a Jim Edmonds because they took advantage of stupid or cheap franchises. It's a different world now, The analytics guys have taken over the sport and the days of horse trading are long past, for better or worse.
I would like an expanded bracket o get rid of the stupid play-in game, but 16 teams is too many. Maybe I'd go to 12 teams and give the top finishers a bye.
I believe we will see some fans in the stands next season. We're getting a dry run with college and pro football, which could set an unfortunate example come flu season. But I do not see pro sports flourishing without at least some game revenue.
No, there is no excue for being that flat. It took a lot of sacrifice just to keep playing this season, never mind to stay in the playoff chase. To get into the final two weeks and tap out after all that work . . . not good. It will be interesting to see if they can regroup.
Jim is an excellent coach. And he knows that any sign of trouble at all will end his career as a high-level coach, so he will be motivated to stay strong day to day to stay on top of his issues.
He's been to one NLCS here, giving him more postseason at bats during his entire time in Arizona. And it's not like this team is going to take the tank-and-rebuild route and lose 100 games the next three or four seasons.
Sometimes a minor league blows up, as Voit did. The Yankees were as surprised as anybody when he turned into a big-time power hitter at the major league level. And good for him, because he is a great player.
Once Carpenter gets into that final year of his contract year, he will either hit or he will get the Jhnnoy Peralta treatment.