Posted on November 12, 2009 at 8:52 AM
Filed Under: St. Louis Cardinals
We had a good conversation last night with Matthew Leach, Cardinal beat writer for MLB.com, on the United Cardinal Bloggers Radio Hour
. The major topics were hashed out and Matthew brought some interesting thoughts into the mix.
For example, he thinks the odds of Matt Holliday returning to the Cards are less than 50/50, though not infinitesimal. He did bemoan the creeping compulsion by fans to start blaming Holliday for being one of those greedy guys who is just looking out for the top dollar.
As Matthew pointed out, it could be the last time Holliday gets to take top dollar. For some guys, they want to grab that once, at least. It's hard to say that we wouldn't do the same, though you'd like to think other considerations would come into play. They may, we don't know, but we shouldn't begrudge a guy for doing something most of us would probably do as well.
From the team's point of view, though, they aren't likely to just wait around for Holliday, and it sounds like there is a possibility they'd go shore up the pitching if they thought there was a bargain there. So while they may not sign John Lackey, I wouldn't be surprised if they don't at least keep in touch with his agent. Having him slide in behind Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright would be a pretty interesting rotation.
On Mark McGwire, there doesn't seem to be any more definitive news. While the team could do a press conference tomorrow if they wanted to, they seem to be content to use the "don't overshadow the awards" cover to let them figure out just what they want to do about it. My cynical side would expect a Tuesday before Thanksgiving presser, so that the holidays would lessen the impact (who is really paying attention to things when there's a table full of food to be taken care of?) but when even ESPN is talking about it
already, waiting can't be all that good of a thing.
We are only about a week away from having to protect players from the Rule V draft, and so there was some discussion about that. Especially where Bryan Anderson comes into play. Dustin pointed out that catchers don't usually get taken since it means a team would have to either carry three catchers or use an unproven minor leaguer as their backup, so strategically he may get left off and the Cards take the risk.
Another name that was questionable was Francisco Samuel. Matthew thought the odds were that he'd be protected, since bullpen arms are easier to keep on a roster if someone takes him via Rule V, as we saw with Luis Peradomo last year.
We may only see Holliday get offered arbitration, as the club has been pretty skittish about giving it out in the past. I'd really hate to see Mark DeRosa and Joel Pineiro leave without getting something for them, though. If this report is true
, I think you can safely offer DeRosa, because he's going to get a deal somewhere.
(Off topic, but while looking for that link, I saw another blog post at MLBTR
that said Mark Prior was throwing from flat ground. I was surprised that he was only 29. Talk about low risk/high reward. I've advocated for him before and I'd love to see St. Louis give him a minor league contract, see if he has anything left.)
Always enjoy having Matthew on the show. Toss him a question and stand back, because you are going to get a lot of thought and information on the topic.
In other news, Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina were the Gold Glove winners from the Cardinals this year. No Albert Pujols, which was a little disappointing, though he did have more errors than usual this year. It could have been, as well, that the voters weren't sure if the played first base or second base, based on where he positions himself sometimes! Wainwright was a little surprising to me, since I don't remember him being anything spectacular from the mound, at least in the fielding department. Pineiro I might have believed, though Waino's never been bad in that regard.
A new Cardinal blog, in the style of an Onion-like parody, has come along. So give a check out of Fredbird Follys
when you have the time!
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