Yes, the Cardinals are still a reliever short. And, yes, Jay could fall into the odd-man-out scenario with the team possessing so many outfielders. But for now, he offers handy left-side protection for Bourjos, who has yet to establish himself as a durable full-time player or consistent offensive performer. And Motte appears likely to help sooner than later. I would be surprised to see something happen with Jay in the near term.
That said, the exit of Mujica, Axford and Salas did compromise the Cardinals bullpen. Those guys left after earlier flameouts by Boggs, Scrabble and Sanchez. That is a lot of proven bullpen talent heading out the door in short order.
Unfortunately for Mike Matheny, nobody "won" the final bullpen spot. I would think Maness makes the team based on his past success and his composure, but middle relief could be a lingering issue. Can the Cardinals get by until Motte and Garcia return? Or must the team make another dumpster dive?
Oscar Taveras hits from the left side, between leg injuries. So does James Ramsey, a fast-tracker who got lost in the Stephen Piscotty hub-bub.
The Cardinals really, really like Kolten Wong, who will play 2B for free the next several years. With Peralta AND Diaz on board with long-term deals, there is no reason to mention Tulowitzki's name again.
Good question. I suppose the Rams could pass on a WR in this draft and trust Britt to add competition to the incumbents, but taking a WR in the second round seems way more appealing. Sticking with the incumbents plus a retread would show a lot of faith in players still striving to become impact players.
The Rams won't know much about Long until much, much, MUCH closer to training camp. His best-case scenario had him recovering just in time to play the real games. Les Snead expressed optimism about Long's recovery, but then again Les also indicated this team doesn't have any big holes -- which is hardly the case.
He is a .266 hitter vs. lefties. He had one decent power year in the majors. He could be a handy guy, yes, and the Cardinals could still use a bit more right-side bench heft. But . . . Stephen Piscotty's great spring did change the dynamic some. The Cardinals don't want to thrust him into a part-time role now, but he should be a factor later this season. And he would be just want the team needs, somebody to protect Adams vs. lefties.
Most NCAA sports are non-revenue sports, so this ruling is only making the football and basketball folks sweat. Football and basketball players associations couldn't force schools to offer them unlimited eligibility, just as the MLBPA can't dictate how long teams employ players. But . . . this ruling was a step toward getting some real compensation for college athletes in revenue sports A billion dollar industry can't expect to exploit "student-athletes" forever and ever in a free market society.
You would think that the addition of two other shortstops -- one proven, one a prospect -- would end that chatter.
Since when is Ballpark Village a four-star venue? Also, doesn't the club realize that the most casually dressed fans often consume the most beer? And isn't this all about selling as much overpriced beer as possible?
What stockpile? Right now the Cardinals are at least one reliever short. Guys get hurt, guys struggle, needs develop. At this moment the Cardinals do not have a pitching surplus.
This team should win 95 games. It has only minor needs at the moment. There is payroll flexibility to spend from and assets to move in trades as needed.
Fisher suggested that could certainly happen. It was interesting to hear him characterize Robinson as somebody who would need time to develop at OT . . . or even move inside, ala Saffold.
I like the potential of the ex-Stars line as a No. 3 unit, with Roy with them -- if Roy gets to a pace that Hitchcock wants from him.
Stanton is going to command an astronomical salary very, very soon. I see the Cardinals standing pat Craig, Adams, Taveras, Piscotty and Grichuk to see how it all pans out. I see less than zero need to chase a guy who could command a nine-digit deal as free agency nears.
A healthy Peralta should hit 15 to 20 homers and drive in 65 to 75 runs as a No. 2 hitter. That would make a huge impact on this lineup.
They don't, really. Spring training should be cut down by at least two weeks. Veteran players have extensive off-season workout programs and prospects can play fall or winter ball to get their developmental time. Back in the old days, players used spring training to get shape.These days most players never fall out of shape. The job pays way too well for that.
I see Kevin used a LOT in the late innings. He and Martinez will be the primary hammers setting up Rosenthal. Maness is more of a sixth- or seventh-inning guy IMO.
But the best players in this draft are worth bidding on. There is only one Clowney. There are three QBs better than the rest. Watkins appears to be better than other WRs and there are also two elite OTs.
That already happens more than the NCAA wants to admit. But, yes, once the pay door is opened, recruiting will be a free-for-all. Not only will players want pay, they will want the richest programs to pay more and the best players to earn more.
It looks like Novak played 27 games for Western Michigan, which is a big jump up from junior hockey.