Greetings from 28,000 feet above ... well, according to the map here ... Pittsburgh. Welcome to the first airborne Chat to be Named Later. Today's chat was timed to correspond with my flight from Toronto to Tampa, Fla., (by way of Miami, naturally), so we can spend some time together here as long as the wi-fi works and I'm not distracted by the dozens of movies at my fingertips. Ain't technology great? To think we used to have read newspapers on these flights. The horror! OK, enough joking around, time to get this chat off the ground. So to speak. It was a well-spent weekend in Toronto for the Local Nine and I imagine angst may be at a low for the season. You are welcome to prove me wrong ...
Right now, that is trending toward the bullpen, especially as the relievers sort into new roles and there's going to be an opening for him there in a variety of responsibilities.
The Cardinals have had, in the past, a woman who worked within baseball operations as part of Jeff Luhnow's staff. They have several woman on the business side who are leading that facet of the organization. I'm not sure what would pass as your definition of high-ranking roles on the baseball side, but the on the baseball ops side the Cardinals do not have a woman in the chief positions of GM, asst. GM, farm director, head trainer, manager, or any of the coaching roles. The story on Rachel was excellent and she, in many ways, is a pioneer in her role.
Not according to the comments before the game, before the back flared, and after the game. Though he has had his lower back seize on him before. That has kept him out of a game or two in the past.
There was a need to alleviate playing time at the highest affiliate and the push was coming from above and below, not to mention at the time the priority players Grichuk, Taveras, and Piscotty were in Class AAA. Butler was caught in a vice. The major-league outfield was full, he was not being used much off the bench, and at Class AA there was O'Neill and Ramsey pushing for a promotion. That wasn't the best situation for the Cardinals to block their young players, and there is the reality that it wasn't good for Butler either, who recognized the situation and didn't want to rust while he was having a strong season. This became a mutually agreeable solution. Butler comes off the 40-man roster to create an opening there if needed (Aardsma, for example) and he gets to rake in Japan while making a better salary than he had here.
Why it's only the best book about the Cardinals ever written by me with a forward by Stan Musial. It's also got bite-sized chapters which people tell are great for reading in the loo.
RISP was going to go way down. I like the way John Mabry has explained it: Last year the Cardinals had Stan Musial at the plate every time there was a runner in scoring position. There are a few solutions to keep the offense revving -- or get it revving on a more consistent basis, as it were -- and I plan to explore a couple in tomorrow's paper once I get to Florida and start cranking away. Two mentioned in the clubhouse yesterday was embracing the idea that the Cardinals are an OBP offense and arrange the lineup that way. Another, the one argued by Holliday, is it's past time to get the SLG going and there's no excuse for the power drain this late in the season.
Trades are always possible. They're just more likely when the calendar turns to July. And there doesn't have to be a trade to clear a role/space for Adams. The Cardinals can do that on the roster with a simple optioning of an active players. They can also clear a spot for him in the lineup in the same way they did last year -- just not as an everyday player. Or, Matheny can go with the hot hand approach and if Adams returns and returns slugging then he'll play and the team will have to reconsider if it's best to have Taveras here in the majors or playing in the minors. This isn't a dilemma that is going to catch the Cardinals off guard. They see it coming. Matheny said yesterday that Adams' return to the majors will be based on how he's going after starting a rehab assignment today and how they're going as an offense. If Taveras is contributing and thriving, he'll stay and the trade you discuss will come down the road.
Another option: Taveras is going to have to play center field.
That brings us to the second part of your question. Jon Jay is playing because of what you say - his offense. The Cardinals have been thirsting for runs. Parched. It has been the most frustrating element of the game for the club since the beginning, and that has meant that anyone hitting -- as Jay has this season and has in the past -- is going to play. If there's a trade for him, it's going to be Freese-style once the offseason starts and there's a reason to move him before he goes into a second round of arbitration. There's a lot of baseball to play before that, and he can -- because he's here now -- influence that decisions greatly with his play.
With Wong shelved by the shoulder issue and a lefthanded pitcher, his options were limited. He went with damage over OBP, and Grichuk gave him that with the homer Saturday. It's not the ideal spot for him, and Matheny acknowledged that. He just counted the question by saying there wasn't a better or more-obvious option with the personnel he had in play.
Absolutely. And most likely.
Exactly. I get those a lot. Hey, here are all the reasons I don't like this player and all the things he does poorly, let's trade him for Mike Trout because clearly the Angels management isn't t seeing the same things I am because the office is at the beach or something.
Tired of the Cardinals drafting so late in the first round? I guess that's one solution.
Did you watch them play this past weekend? Did you see them shut out one of the best lineups in the American League and shut out a team that had won six straight, 15 of their previous 17 ... And did you see how they did it? Sunday's game was the game the Cardinals have been talking about having for weeks. They haven't played that complete of a game this season, you could argue. They have had pitchers dominate. They've had fine defensive games. They've had some games won on baserunning and a few won with offense. But all together? In concert? Not like they had Saturday and Sunday, and silly me ... I thought that was newsworthy. Sometimes it's the HOW not just the WHAT. Maybe I should have agonized over how Trevor Rosenthal allowed a baserunner? My bad.
To put it simply: Because Oscar Taveras showed up when Adams went on the DL and the plan to play Grichuk most days shifted to a plan to play Taveras everyday.
I'm not sure what you're advocating here. You think the roster right now is good enough to be the team the Cardinals imagined, but you want a shakeup the moment it gets there?
Ah, thanks for the clarification.
I root for England in the World Cup. But I don't mind the Barca players doing well and love to watch Spain play. This World Cup might just be the best time to root for a spectacle -- Messi achieving the greatness he deserves, Neymar leading the hosts to the championship ... can you imagine either? What an event those would be.
It had some intriguing risks that they have to get signed before we know. Baseball draft's are notoriously impossible to have a knee-jerk reaction to. The 2009 draft had an element of safety that some downgraded and four years later it had produced 1/5 of a World Series team. Go figure.
They reached and they'll have to pay overslot for the second pick, which is why they then went for the players they did in later picks. There is not a Wacha in that group. There wasn't a Wacha in the 10 drafts before him and it will be hard to find one in the 10 drafts after. Recognize him for he is -- Wacha alone, not a trend.
It's not out of the realm of possibility as they'll be window-shopping for a top-end starter.
The Cardinals have the young talent to talk Price, and they are one of the few teams who can. Tampa Bay will want a ransom. (See: Shields, James) That "home run hitter" has to play a position and in the near future the Cardinals aren't going to be able to have the playing time they want for the players they do have. Where would said home run hitter play? Third base? Well then what of Wong when Carpenter moves back to second? Center field? Good luck finding that. First base? Where does Craig or Adams or Taveras go ... Cards have no DH option until they go to Baltimore later this season.
Shields today. Though Price is more desirable, and thus more costly.