I fully expect Luke Weaver to get a start in Adam Wainwright's place.
I expect Weaver to make that start. The Cardinals aren't rebuilding. They are not far off, and their farm system is loaded with future contributors. Just look at how their rookies have played up here this year.
Fowler has had a rough debut in St. Louis. I've covered baseball long enough to know that the weight of a big, new free agent contract can be overwhelming at times. Also, you cannot discount the injuries that have plagued Fowler this year.
I would have said Lynn, but I don't know anymore.
I assume that Diaz's trade value is fairly low at this point.
Numbers unfortunately do lie. Your lineup assumes that Carpenter can thrive in the No. 3 spot, but he is just not comfortable in that spot for some matter. Carpenter likes and feels comfortable in the leadoff spot.
Taveras was a special player, and it's not easy to replace those types of stars. DeJong is having an impressive rookie season. There is plenty of outfield depth. Let's see which guys prove to be stars.
You might be correct. That's the question that John Mozeliak must consider. He must decide how much he wants to change the roster.
The Cardinals must first figure out if he would even accept a deal to St. Louis. I assume the remaining $295 million portion of his heavily backloaded $325 million contract would lower the return the Marlins might be able to get in return for Stanton. I would assume a pair of top 10 prospects and perhaps a controllable young major leaguer might be enough.
I don't think the budget would be an issue.
You have to remember that the Cardinals aren't going to just tear down the team. Why would you get rid of Pham, the guy who has been the Cardinals' best and most productive outfielder this year?
I'm picking the U.S. tonight against Jamaica, but the Gold Cup this year hasn't drawn much of my attention. I hate when the giants of CONCACAF - Mexico and the U.S. - field B teams, as they did this year.
You'd be surprised to learn that they won 100 games just two seasons ago. If not for the bullpen, they would be in first place in the mediocre NL Central. I've said since the offseason that this team was a wild-card contender, not an NL Central contender.
No backlash at all. I didn't publicize this because the conversations were private, but since you asked, Mike Matheny and I had two great chats on Monday. We discussed the column. I was trained in Los Angeles by former Dodgers writer Gordon Verrell and in New York by several great ballwriters, and they all taught me early that you show up to the ballpark the first day possible after writing a critical column. You owe it to sources to show your office. So I went straight to Matheny's office after I entered the clubhouse on Monday. Michael Girsch was in there, so we just waved hello. Then on his way to the dugout for his daily media briefing, he called out for me when we were in the tunnel. We had a great chat for 10 minutes. Then we had another chat on the field during batting practice. The conversation was just between us two, and it was very informative. I think Mike Matheny knows I have tremendous respect for him as a man and as a baseball manager. I made sure not to take any cheap shots.
I can practically assure you that the Cardinals will make a move or two. They know they need relief help. I expect them to sell and buy. Let's see what happens by Monday.
As Fowler gets older, I'm sure he'll accept a move to one of the corners.
I'm sure that will be a consideration in the future, but he's still building up his repertoire as a starter at Class AA Springfield. He is coming off his best start of the year, throwing seven scoreless innings Sunday against Arkansas. He has allowed only two earned runs over 18 2/3 innings over his last three starts, but he is still 6-5 with a 4.85 ERA this season. He has a career-high 1.45 WHIP in his first year at Class AA. He has 41 walks and 80 strikeouts over 98 1/3 innings this year. He won't turn 22 until Sept. 7, so he's still young. He's probably a year away from the majors.
I'm really intrigued by Magneuris Sierra's potential. I'm eager to see Dakota Hudson. And although Sandy Alcantara has struggled in his first season at Class AA Springfield and tumbled in the prospect rankings, I'm very high on him. I envision him as a worthy heir to the tags that Carlos Martinez and Alex Reyes have worn as top pitching prospects.
He bought a home here. He's committed to St. Louis.
Fowler will certainly stick around. None of the other outfielders are viewed as untouchable by the front office, so your guess is as good as mine.