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December 2012

The Year At CATB: 2012 In Review

Posted on December 31, 2012 at 11:05 AM
It's the last day of the calendar year.  While I'm sure there are still discussions going on between GMs and players, for the most part it's extremely quiet and nowhere more so than in St. Louis.  So, to kill a little of the boredom, I'm going to look back through a year's worth of posts, make some lists, and pretend like people will read them and post comments agreeing or disagreeing.  If you've not been here in the last few days, though, be sure to read the latest UCB project on the top five stories of 2012.  With that out of the way, let's start the lists!

Top 6 Posts

Top 6 Titles of Posts

Top 5 Posts From Winter Warmup Correspondent Kevin Reynolds

Top 5 Posts In Exchange For Products
Sales Pitch: Burton History Trees (Last day for 10% off with c70 code, BTW!)

Top 5 United Cardinal Bloggers Posts

Top 4 Posts That Show I Should Be Used To Crow

Top 4 Whimsical Posts

Hopefully, if you are one of my regular readers, you remember many of these posts.  If not, or if you are a newcomer, click through and read a couple to get a dose of Cardinal baseball as the year comes to an end.  If you have any other suggestions for these categories, feel free to leave them in the comments.  I'll try to do better in 2013!

UCB December Project: Top 5 Stories

Posted on December 28, 2012 at 4:50 PM
It's telling about this offseason that I can not write for over a week and still not necessarily have a backlog of things to talk about.  Sure, Ty Wigginton got signed and that's pretty inexplicable, but others have covered that better than I have.  Other than that, what?  Listing all the Cardinal stuff I got for Christmas?  (That'd take a little time--it was a good Christmas.)

Thankfully, the regular monthly project of the United Cardinal Bloggers comes along and helps me at least get some words on the metaphorical page.  As we do at the end of every December, we take a look back and see what were the top stories of the last 12 months.  Your mileage may vary, of course, and I suggest you read the others that participate between now and Monday to get a full idea of 2012, but these are my picks for the biggest news stories of the year.
  Continue Reading

Keeping You Informed: Christmas Day Marathon

Posted on December 19, 2012 at 5:05 PM
Nothing says Christmas like some Cardinal baseball, does it?  That's what Fox Sports Midwest thinks and I can't disagree with them.  So open the gifts early then settle in for some holiday (and Holliday) fun!

FOX Sports Midwest to televise Cardinals marathon on Christmas Day 
  Special takes fans inside the Winter Meetings 
  Five of the best regular season games of 2012 will be replayed

FOX Sports Midwest will televise a marathon of St. Louis Cardinals programming on Christmas Day, highlighted by replays of five of the best regular season games of 2012 and a 30-minute special that takes fans inside the Baseball Winter Meetings.

The 12 ½ hours of baseball starts Tuesday, Dec. 25 at 11:30 a.m. CT with a replay of the 2012 season review special. It's followed at 12 p.m. by Cardinals Legends: 1982 World Series Revisited, a one-hour show looking back at the 1982 championship team.

Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings premieres at 7 p.m. and replays at 9:30 p.m. FOX Sports Midwest cameras were granted unprecedented access behind closed doors during the Winter Meetings with the Cardinals front office, including GM John Mozeliak, giving fans insight into how deals develop.

And throughout the day FOX Sports Midwest replays five of the best games from the 2012 regular season. Fans voted last week at FOXSportsMidwest.com for the games they wanted to see.

Cardinals Christmas Day marathon on FOX Sports Midwest - Dec. 25 schedule 
Times Central | Schedule subject to change | Programming available in Cardinals television footprint 
11:30 a.m. Cardinals Rewind: 2012 Season Review 
12 p.m. Cardinals Legends: 1982 World Series Revisited 
1 p.m. Sept. 16, 2012: Cardinals at Dodgers ->> Must-win game goes extra innings 
3 p.m. June 25, 2012: Cardinals at Marlins ->> 9th-inning comeback and wild win in 10th 
5 p.m. Sept. 21, 2012: Cardinals at Cubs ->> Carp returns, but Cubs come back to win 
7 p.m. Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings 
7:30 p.m. May 22, 2012: Padres at Cardinals ->> Wainwright shuts out San Diego 
9:30 p.m. Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings 
10 p.m. July 21, 2012: Cubs at Cardinals ->> 12-run 7th inning

Thrice Upon A Cardinal Christmas Carol

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 1:15 PM
"Merry Christmas, Mr. Mozeliak!"

John Mozeliak, general manager of the St. Louis Cardinals, looked up from his desk at the well-wisher that had just poked her head into his office.

"Merry Christmas to you as well, Lindsey.  Everything going well down in PR?"

Lindsey smiled.  "Well, since I just turned off the lights and everyone's headed home early, I guess you could say that.  Are you about to leave as well?"

Mozeliak looked around.  "I have some paperwork to do, but it'll keep.  However, I've got a feeling I'll be having some visitors soon, so I'll stick around.  Have a wonderful Christmas Eve and we'll see you back here later in the week."

Lindsey returned the sentiment and headed on her way.  Mozeliak kept pushing papers around and checking his watch.  The last two Christmas Eves had been so memorable.  Were they done with him?

"Not in the least, big boy.  You know we are going to stick to you like a pig caught under a barnyard gate."
  Continue Reading

Keeping You Informed: 2013 Winter Warm-Up Tickets

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 12:35 PM
You likely already know about the WWU tickets going on sale and the prices associated with each player, but here's a nice handy reference for you.  I'm sure that this year's Warm-Up Will be another rousing success!

WINTER WARM-UP AUTOGRAPH TICKETS ON SALE 
Autograph Donations to Benefit Kids in the Cardinals Community

ST. LOUIS, MO, December 18, 2012 - Cardinals Care, the charitable foundation of the St. Louis Cardinals, announced today that fans may begin purchasing autograph tickets for the 17th annual Winter Warm-Up at the team's website, cardinals.com/winterwarmup, at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, December 19th.

Player autograph sessions are one of the most popular attractions of the Warm-Up. While some players' autographs are free with the admission pass, others require an autograph ticket available through a specific additional donation. Every dollar donated for autograph tickets and all proceeds from the Winter Warm-Up benefit Cardinals Care, the team's community foundation that cares for kids.

Fans may also continue to purchase admission passes for the three-day Winter Warm-Up online at cardinals.com/winterwarmup, in the official Cardinals Team Store at Busch Stadium and at Cardinals Clubhouse stores located around St. Louis.

The highly-anticipated annual event takes place Saturday, January 19 through Monday, January 21, 2013 (Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day), at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch. The event times are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday.

This year, fans can meet their favorite Cardinals past and present, as well as some of the franchise's rising stars, many of whom contributed to the extended 2012 postseason run. From Red Schoendienst and Andy Benes, to Adam Wainwright and Oscar Taveras, there's a Cardinal for every generation of fan.

This year's autograph schedule even includes a return visit from former skipper Tony La Russa who will offer two opportunities for fans to get an autograph. On Sunday, La Russa will host a free book-signing in conjunction with his latest work One Last Strike, and on Monday, La Russa will sign items for a donation to Cardinals Care.

"The 2013 Winter Warm-Up offers another winning lineup for Cardinals fans this year," said Michael Hall, Executive Director of Cardinals Care and Vice President of Community Relations. "We hope fans will come take advantage of this unique opportunity to meet the team, and that they feel good doing it knowing their donations are going back into the community to support area children."

Hall urges fans to visit the website at cardinals.com/winterwarmup for the most up-to-date details about player autograph dates, times and, if required, additional donation amounts. All autograph tickets will be sold online through Monday, January 14th. Any remaining autograph tickets not sold online will be available at the Winter Warm-Up. For complete event details, schedule and frequently asked questions, visit cardinals.com/winterwarmup.

The Winter Warm-Up is the largest of several fundraising efforts that allows Cardinals Care to help kids. Over the last 16 years, Cardinals Care has invested nearly $18 million in helping children, including providing nearly $11 million in grants to over 800 non-profit youth organizations, and building 19 youth ball fields in disadvantaged neighborhoods in Missouri and Illinois. For nearly a decade, Cardinals Care has run the innovative Redbird Rookies program, a free baseball league for kids who otherwise might not have the opportunity to play. In addition to providing all the uniforms, gloves, bats, balls and other equipment needed for each team, Redbird Rookies also provides extensive off-field support in the areas of health, education, mentoring and the cultural arts for each of the nearly 4,500 kids who participate in the program each year.

*Dates, times and players may change prior to Winter Warm-Up. Some players may be added after today.*

 

Player

Autograph Donation

Signing Date

Signing Time

Adams, Matt

$5

Saturday, January 19

1-3pm

Benes, Alan

$5

Monday, January 21

11am-1pm

Benes, Andy

$5

Monday, January 21

11am-1pm

Beltran, Carlos

$75

Monday, January 21

10am-12pm

Boggs, Mitchell

$5

Sunday, January 20

3-5pm

Browning, Barret

$5

Saturday, January 19

12-2pm

Carpenter, Chris

$50

Saturday, January 19

9am-11am

Carpenter, Matt

$15

Monday, January 21

10am-12pm

Chambers, Adron

$5

Saturday, January 19

11am-1pm

Choate, Randy

$5

TBD

TBD

Clark, Jack

$5

Saturday, January 19

2-4pm

Craig, Allen

$30

Sunday, January 20

11am-1pm

Cruz, Tony

$5

Saturday, January 19

3-5pm

Descalso, Daniel

$10

TBD

TBD

Duncan, Chris

$5

Sunday, January 20

10am-12pm

Franklin, Ryan

$5

TBD

TBD

Freeman, Sam

$5

Saturday, January 19

12-2pm

Freese, David

$75

TBD

TBD

Garcia, Jaime

$20

Saturday, January 19

10am-12pm

Gibson, Bob                  
pre-autographed baseball

$75

Everyday

Cardinals Care Store

Hart, Bo

$5

Sunday, January 20

10am-12pm

Herzog, Whitey

$75

Monday, January 21

12-1pm

Holliday, Matt

$75

Saturday, January 19

10am-12pm

Jackson, Ryan

$5

Sunday, January 20

10am-12pm

Jay, Jon

$20

Sunday, January 20

12-2pm

Kelly, Joe

$15

Sunday, January 20

10am-12pm

King, Ray

$5

Sunday, January 20

10am-12pm

Kline, Steve

$5

Monday, January 21

10am-12pm

Kozma, Pete

$10

Sunday, January 20

12-2pm

La Russa, Tony

$40

Monday, January 21

10am-12pm

Mabry, John

$5

Monday, January 21

10am-12pm

Maness, Seth

$5

Sunday, January 20

1-3pm

Matheny, Mike

$30

Monday, January 21

12-2pm

Miller, Shelby

$15

Saturday, January 19

12-2pm

Molina, Yadier

$75

TBD

TBD

Motte, Jason                  
pre-autographed baseball

$30

Everyday

Cardinals Care Store

Mujica, Edward

$5

TBD

TBD

Robinson, Shane

$5

Saturday, January 19

1-3pm

Rosenthal, Trevor

$15

Sunday, January 20

1-3pm

Rzepczynski, Marc

$5

Saturday, January 19

10am-12pm

Salas, Fernando

$5

TBD

TBD

Schoendienst, Red

$75

Sunday, January 20

10-11am

Shannon, Mike

$10

Sunday, January 20

4-5pm

Smith, Ozzie
pre-autographed baseball

$75

Everyday

Cardinals Care Store

Swagerty, Jordan

$5

Saturday, January 19

2-4pm

Taveras, Oscar

$10

Sunday, January 20

1-3pm

Thompson, Brad

$5

Saturday, January 19

1-3pm

Wacha, Michael

$5

Saturday, January 19

3-5pm

Wainwright, Adam

$50

TBD

TBD

Westbrook, Jake

$10

Sunday, January 20

2-4pm

           

The following players will be signing free autographs and will not require a ticket.

Check cardinals.com/winterwarmup for their dates and times.

 

Scott Cooper

Ken Dayley

Cal Eldred

Al Hrabosky

Rick Horton

Tom Lawless

Joe Magrane

Cliff Politte

Kerry Robinson

Jason Simontacchi

 

***Thank you for supporting area kids with your donation for autographs at the Winter Warm-Up!***

Skipping Town

Posted on December 12, 2012 at 7:02 AM
In every post you read this morning dealing with the fact that the Cardinals traded Skip Schumaker to the Dodgers last night, you will find two points:

A. Schumaker is a wonderful person
B. Baseball is a business

To the former, there's plenty of evidence.  We as fans got to see that expressed clearly last season when he made such a push to help friends of his, organizing Stars 4 Baby Reesa.  We saw him uncomplainingly learn second base after a career of being an outfielder a few seasons back.  His reputation for integrity and team-first attitude has never been questioned.

What has been questioned, however, is how valuable he is to a baseball team, which leads to the second point.  There's no doubt that Schumaker's value to the team as a player has declined over the last few years.  He's still got a value to them, it's true, but it's more of the clubhouse leader value rather than a directly impacting games value.

He can still hit around .300, most likely, but you have to keep him away from lefthanders for that to happen.  He's a defensive liability at second base and doesn't have the power you'd associate with outfielders.  He has little power and he's not a noted on-base guy.  He didn't have just a ton of success pinch-hitting either.  Again, I'm not saying that he didn't bring anything to the table, but what he did bring wasn't exactly the firstfruits of baseball, if you know what I mean.

There's been some talk about what the Cardinals will be receiving as well, AA shortstop Jake Lemmerman.  Lemmerman hasn't exactly impressed as he moved up the ladder in the Dodger organization--Jon Doble said on Twitter that "he's barely equal to Pete Kozma.  The real Kozma, not the September 2012 Kozma."  However, no matter what John Mozeliak said publicly about optimizing the return for Schumaker, this was never about what the team could get back.

After all, we know the flaws in Schumaker's game--they are mentioned above.  There's no doubt that other teams realize what he is as well.  Plus, one of his strengths to the Cardinals, the fact that he's such a clubhouse leader, gets negated in a trade.  He can still be a person of respect in the Dodger clubhouse, but he doesn't have the roots there to really make a difference.  Skip had been in the Cardinal organization since 2001.  He knew how things worked in St. Louis and he knew how to impart that to others.  In time, he became one of the leaders on the team.  He'll have to start over out in LA.

Basically, what Skip had going for him was a cheap contract.  The Cards could have sent him to Minnesota, where he might have gotten more playing time especially after they traded off two outfielders, but he wasn't likely to win anything there.  No, it was pretty much always going to be the Dodgers because the team respected Skip and wanted to make him as happy as possible about the deal.  He goes home and he gets reunited with Mark McGwire.  If he couldn't play in SL, LA was the next best thing.

Who knows, though?  We thought that the Cardinals were just giving Jim Edmonds away about this time five years ago.  I mean, getting a A ball prospect back for a guy that was building a Hall of Fame case?  Yet David Freese has done pretty well for himself since that deal.  (I'd expect Freese had a better offensive profile, but apparently either all the baseball sites are overloaded this morning or there is something up with my browser, because I'm having a tough time having such things load up.)

However, even though Skip wasn't necessarily the best at second, this deal doesn't do anything but harm the middle infield situation, which wasn't good to begin with.  Daniel Descalso is basically it at second, because we really don't want to see much of Kozma if we can help it.  Besides, Kozma right now is the backup to Rafael Furcal, a backup that might be needed.  You also have Ryan Jackson, but I'd guess he'll be in Memphis most of the season unless opinions on him change.  

Taking Skip out of the equation means either you are really sold (and are banking a lot) on Matt Carpenter being able to make that transition or there's a more pressing need to make a trade or free agent signing.  Would Mo make a deal like this without having something else ready to go?  Actually, I'd bet he would.  There seemed to have been a shift against Schumaker here and it's likely that, even with the middle infield weakness, he wouldn't have gotten much playing time.  Better to respect him and deal him than let him sit, even if you don't have the replacement quite ready.

So to Skip Schumaker, we say thanks for all you did as a Cardinal, both on the field and off.  We thank you for your professionalism and your willingness to take one for the team.  We wish you all possible success in Los Angeles and hope you lose to the Cardinals in the NLCS next year.  Best of luck in the future as we tip our hats to your departure.

I'm sure Chris Mallonee will have much to say on this topic during tonight's UCB Radio Hour.  Tune in at 9:30 pm this evening and jump in the chat room to talk about what's on your mind!

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What Do You Get A Cards Fan For Christmas (When They Already Own Game 6)

Posted on December 11, 2012 at 7:07 AM
First off, you have to listen to the following to get why I think the title of this post is pretty good, if I do say so myself:


OK, now that you'll have that in your head for a while, let's get into a few items that will appeal either to Cardinal fans you are shopping for or things to ask for from those purchasing from you.  (Or, third option, things you buy for yourself for Christmas!)  The ladies at Aaron Miles' Fastball did this extremely well last week, so we'll just say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and leave it at that.

It's not surprising that I'm going to lead this off with another swing at the Cardinal Burton History Tree.  I feel like I'm almost an unofficial pitchman for this, even going on KMOX last Friday to talk about them.  (This is where I put in that #humblebrag tag, right?)  There's a reason that I'm talking about them so much, though, and it's because the trees are an outstanding, unique piece of memorabilia that, if you are a true Cardinal fan, you will enjoy looking at for a long time to come.  The unframed ones are nice, but I was fortunate enough to get a framed one and it's outstanding.  The black frame really sets it off nicely and is a classier way to add a Cardinal touch to a living room or den than old Cardinal calendar pages.  Not that I've done that.  Well, not in my den, at least.  Remember, until the end of the year you can get 10% off anything you order at Burton with the code c70.

Speaking of stuff I've talked about before, BiGR's Cardinal headphones are still a great thought this holiday season.  As the AMF women noted, right now you can save 50% by using the code "bigrcards" at checkout.  These are quality headphones--I was using them just last night, incidentally--and if you are into such things, you wouldn't want to pass up a deal like this.

If you are looking for more of a stocking stuffer, perhaps a 2013 calendar would be a nice touch.  For once, the player calendar doesn't have an obvious "we put this together in June before these guys left the team" feel to it, as I believe everyone that is on the calendar is actually still a Cardinal.  You've also got the desk calendar, which can give you that little bit of Cardinal history or trivia every day, which is really a blessing at both ends of the year when little is happening.  For people in the St. Louis area (or perhaps if you want to call the Cardinals at 314-345-9303 to order directly), I'd suggest the team calendar.  With stylish photos of Busch Stadium and the Cardinal schedule directly on the calendar, it's a one-stop shop for anything you might need.  You can get it at a variety of places around St. Louis, such as the Team Store or even Mobil On The Run, and it'll run you about $15.

You've seen Alex Fritz and his Legopiece Theater and wondered, "Man, how does he get Lego guys that look like players?"  Wonder no more, my friends.  Oyo Sports is where you want to go to get your own Adam Wainwright, Chris Carpenter (who, sadly, does not come with detachable rib--really a marketing oversight there), or Matt Holliday.  Of course, there are other teams as well in case you need an opposing team to take on your Lego Cardinals.

Of course, there are always a lot of things over at MLB.com worth taking a look at, even if they aren't necessarily for the bargain shopper.  Of course, over on the closeout side of things, you can get a 2011 World Series Cardinal cap for $19.  Limited sizes, but it is over half off and still just as appropriate to wear--until they win another World Series, at least.

Being a blogger, I'm all about comfort.  This time of year, I'm wearing pajama pants whenever I'm not in public and, if I'm out late enough, sometimes even on the midnight run to Wal-Mart, because there's no way I'm out of place wearing pajama pants in that crowd.  Anyway, these Cardinal fleece pants are right up my alley.  They show off your fandom without that unpleasant need to dress up.  Depending on your office's definition of Casual Friday, these could be a lifesaver!

Of course, there are a number of things out there with the Cardinal logo that make you stop and say, "Really?  You are selling that?"  However, the above items should make you a hero to anyone that you purchase for.  Merry Christmas to all!

UCB Roundtable: Social Media Director For A Day

Posted on December 10, 2012 at 7:05 AM
Pardon the lack of activity around here.  Between the lack of Cardinal actions and the holiday season, it's tough to make the time to sit down at the keyboard.  I know I haven't weighed in on Randy Choate, but there's not really much to say.  The Cards needed another lefty and they got one.  Choate's struggles against righthanders is worrisome, especially if Marc Rzepczynski has similar problems, but he can lock down the lefties.  We'll just have to wait and see if Mike Matheny did some thinking on bullpen management in this offseason.

Also, if you are wanting more of my biting wit and knowledge of my background, the StanGraphs guys featured me in their first attempt at getting to know the UCB.  Lots of fun to be had over there, assuming you have as much fun reading as I did answering.

However, one of the things I've been neglecting is getting up the transcript of my question to the United Cardinal Bloggers last week, which finished up our month-long roundtable.  By time you get to the end of something like that, it's tough to come up with a good and unique question.  I'm still not sure that I did it, but at least I asked something.  My query tied in with the fact that this group is a social media construct.

"If you were the Cardinals' social media director for a day, what would you do?"

Answers after the jump
  Continue Reading

Keeping You Informed: Holiday Gift Drive

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 3:30 PM
One of the great things about this time of year is that there is no shortage of opportunities to help various worthy charities or groups of people.  The Cardinals are asking their fans to help out with one.  No word on whether they are getting Matt Holliday to front their representation.


Cardinals Support Holiday Gift Drive for Families of Deployed Military 
Fans Asked to Join Team Effort the Morning of December 12th by Donating Gifts at Busch Stadium

ST. LOUIS, December 5, 2011 - The St. Louis Cardinals front office is teaming up with Fredbird and volunteers from Cardinals Care, KMOV, Delaware North Sportservice and the American Red Cross to provide holiday gifts to the children of military families at Scott Air Force Base. 

The team is asking fans to support a gift drive at Busch Stadium on the morning of Wednesday December 12th. Volunteers will collect donations for an upcoming Breakfast with Santa at Scott Air Force Base held for the families who have loved ones deployed overseas. 

"The Cardinals appreciate the selfless sacrifice military families make for us," said Bill DeWitt III, President of the Cardinals. "It is hard to be apart from family during the holidays, so we wanted to do our part to make their holiday season a little brighter."

Starting at 6 a.m. on December 12th, volunteers from each organization will collect new unwrapped toys for kids under 12 and gift cards for kids over 13. Fans can drop off donations from 6 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Clark Street in front of the Busch Stadium administrative offices. The first 250 people to donate items will receive a coupon for a free pizza from Papa John's, as well as a complimentary cup of hot chocolate. The children will receive the gifts during Breakfast with Santa (and Fredbird) at Scott Air Force Base hosted by the American Red Cross on December 15th. Fans can learn more at cardinals.com/community or join the join the conversation with #Gifts4Kids. 

The Cardinals made caring for kids - - on and off the baseball field -- their focus when they established the Cardinals Care 16 years ago. Cardinals Care has invested nearly $18 million in helping children, including providing nearly $11 million in grants to over 800 non-profit youth organizations, and building 19 youth ball fields in disadvantaged neighborhoods in Missouri and Illinois. For nearly a decade, Cardinals Care has run the innovative Redbird Rookies program, a free baseball league for kids who otherwise might not have the opportunity to play. In addition to providing all the uniforms, gloves, bats, balls and other equipment needed for each team, Redbird Rookies also provides extensive off-field support in the areas of health, education, mentoring and the cultural arts for each of the nearly 4,500 kids who participate in the program each year.

The Holidays Are For Family

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 6:59 AM
This time of year, families tend to gather around and spend some quality time together.  From reports, it sounds like the Cardinals are taking that to the next level.

Derrick Goold is reporting the Cards are likely to offer the assistant hitting coach position to Bengie Molina, older brother of current Cardinal star Yadier Molina.  (If you needed me to spell that out, I'm guessing you are a bit new to this baseball thing.)  Bengie has no formal coaching experience, but as we've seen in the past few years (Mark McGwire, Mike Matheny) that's not a huge drawback with this organization.

It's interesting to speculate on what exactly in Molina's history struck the Cardinals as hitting coach material.  Of course, he'll be an assistant, so he won't be taking on all the responsibility himself, but it's still an intriguing move.  I was going to say something about his career line not being all that exciting, but then I realized his .274/.307/.411 is pretty close to John Mabry's .263/.322/.405.  If Mabry is going to stick to McGwire's plan, perhaps he can teach Molina as he goes.  (What is it with all the Ms in recent Cardinal history!)

It's the assistant hitting coach, a job that didn't even exist until a few years ago.  It's not a make or break thing and it's a great place for Molina to learn the ropes without having all the pressure on him.  That said and no offense to Tony Cruz, but I hope the Cards can make a deal with Tampa Bay around the trade deadline and bring in Jose Molina, just so they can complete the collection.

Also from the winter meetings, word is that the Dodgers are actually interested in Skip Schumaker.  It seems quite unlikely that Schumaker can get a lot of playing time in St. Louis next season, given the myriad of similar options and the impending arrival of Kolten Wong.  Skip's been a great guy to have in Cardinal red, but even last offseason, when he signed a two-year contract to return, it was hard to see why St. Louis had offered him those terms.  The Cards wouldn't get anything back for him--probably a Class A pitcher or something of that nature--but if he could get more playing time out in LA, more power to them.  Besides, we've seen Class A players from the West Coast come back for a player and be productive (David Freese), though it doesn't always work like that (Maikel Cleto).

Tonight, I'm hosting the UCB Radio Hour and I'll be announcing the winners of the Cardinal Blogger Awards.  Tune in and find out who takes home the hardware!




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Lance Lynn (2)
Tyler Lyons (2)
Edward Mujica (2)
Jake Westbrook (2)
David Freese (1)
Joe Kelly (1)
Seth Maness (1)
Trevor Rosenthal (1)
Michael Wacha (1)
Ty Wigginton (1)

2012 Top Hero: Matt Holliday (17)
2011 Top Hero: Lance Berkman (24)
2010 Top Heroes: Matt Holliday and Albert Pujols (24)
2009 Top Hero: Albert Pujols (28)
2008 Top Hero: Albert Pujols (25)

Goats
Jon Jay (6)
David Freese (5)
Mitchell Boggs (4)
Joe Kelly (4)
Pete Kozma (4)
Matt Carpenter (3)
Allen Craig (3)
Daniel Descalso (3)
Jaime Garcia (3)
Yadier Molina (3)
Matt Adams (2)
Carlos Beltran (2)
Matt Carpenter (2)
Matt Holliday (2)
Lance Lynn (2)
Seth Maness (1)
Shane Robinson (1)
Fernando Salas (1)
Adam Wainwright (1)
Jake Westbrook (1)

2012 Top Goat: Rafael Furcal (11)
2011 Top Goat: Ryan Theriot (12)
2010 Top Goat: Brendan Ryan (14)
2009 Top Goats: Rick Ankiel and Todd Wellemeyer (13)
2008 Top Goat: Troy Glaus (13)

Cardinal Nation Approval Ratings (March 2013)
Yadier Molina 96.2% (up 8.8%)
Chris Carpenter 89.8% (down 0.3%)
Derrick Goold 89.1% (up 6.3%)
Matt Holliday 88.4% (up 0.9%)
Allen Craig 88.3%
Adam Wainwright 88.2% (down 3.7%)
Jose Oquendo 87.1% (up 2.4%)
Jason Motte 86.9%
John Mozeliak 86.5% (up 1.1%)
United Cardinal Bloggers 85.2% (up 6.3%)
Bill DeWitt 85.1% (up 5.3%)
Mike Shannon 85.1% (down 0.2%)
John Rooney 84.5% (up 3.0%)
Mike Matheny 84.4% (up 3.3%)
David Freese 82.9% (down 2.6%)
Jon Jay 81.8% (up 10.7%)
Lance Berkman 80.6% (down 8.0%)
Jenifer Langosch 79.5%
Lance Lynn 79.5%
Dan McLaughlin 76.0% (up 8.0%)
Jim Hayes 73.0% (up 1.1%)
Ricky Horton 65.5% (down 2.0%)
Jaime Garcia 64.1%
Albert Pujols 59.2% (up 4.3%)
Ballpark Village 58.3%
Joe Strauss 54.3% (down 13.4%)

2012
Tony La Russa 88.2% (up 17.4%)
Mark McGwire 82.6% (up 20.1%)
Skip Schumaker 73.3% (up 9.2%)
B.J. Rains 69.5% (down 0.9%)
Kyle Lohse 68.9% (up 13.8%)
Al Hrabosky 66.4% (up 3.2%)
Colby Rasmus 46.5% (down 35.3%)

2011
Dave Duncan 87.9% (up 0.9%)
Matthew Leach 85.5%
Pop Warner 76.7%
Ryan Franklin 72.8% (up 3.1%)
John Vuch 68.9%
Jeff Luhnow 66.4%
Dan Lozano 58.7%

2009
Rick Ankiel 83.9%
Chris Duncan 69.1%


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