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Cardinals Featured In Winter Meeting Opener

Posted on December 8, 2009 at 9:16 AM
Filed Under: St. Louis Cardinals
Can't say there wasn't any Cardinal news coming out of the beginning of the winter meetings.

First off, Whitey Herzog, along with umpire Doug Harvey, were announced as the veteran's committee's selections for the 2010 Hall of Fame class.  Besides being well-deserved, it gave Whitey a chance to talk and for others to talk about Whitey.  That'll always make for a good day!

Whitey of course talked about his career and related subjects, but he branched out at least once, answering a question about Mark McGwire.  Whitey reiterated what most of us feel, that Mac has to answer the questions and do it openly, otherwise it will just dog him throughout the season.

There are a ton of memories surrounding the White Rat.  Ozzie Smith had his own interview talking about the manager that made him into a Hall of Famer.  It may even be time for the Cards to retire his number.  To some degree it's a shame that the running days of the 1980s are gone for good.  You have to wonder what Whitey would have done in this era.

Getting to the here and now, though, St. Louis also was in the news, signing Brad Penny to a one year deal (pending physical).  When you look at what Penny did in the NL, the signing definitely has to intrigue you, especially when he'll slot in as a #3 or a #4 starter.  It's interesting that the story notes that high pitch counts have kept his innings down.  Hopefully the pitch-to-contact philosophy can help him some, though we don't want him to completely lose that strike-'em-out fastball that he has.

Matthew Leach indicated when he visted with us on the UCB Radio Hour last month that he though the Cards would go pitching-heavy if they weren't able to get Matt Holliday to return.  Since their most recent meeting with Scott Boras wasn't able to even produce a contract offer, I think it's fairly safe to say Holliday will be going elsewhere.  Which might bring Mark DeRosa back into the picture.

There's even some indications that the Redbirds might not be done with acquiring pitching.  At first glance, a rotation of Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, Kyle Lohse, Penny and likely Jaime Garcia would look sturdy enough and fit in with the idea that the organization wanted a home-grown arm in the back of that mix, for a variety of reasons including cost containment.  I still think that's likely what it'll wind up being, but apparently the front office isn't ruling out bringing any others in.  I don't know who it'd be, though, save maybe a gamble on Ben Sheets.  But with Penny's injury history, do you want two major risks in the same rotation?

So that's what day 1 of the winter meetings has wrought.  What will day 2 bring?  Some bloggers are finding following Twitter to be a frustrating way to get news out of Indianapolis. I, on the other hand, am really enjoying it.  I've got a fairly wide group that I'm following due to my connections with the Baseball Bloggers Alliance and it seems like the Tweets never stop.  There may not necessarily be a lot of hard news there, but it's interesting to see what rumor comes out, how people respond to it, etc.

I'm sure there will be plenty to discuss tomorrow night when Nick and Josh from Pitchers Hit Eighth host the UCB Radio Hour.  Plan to join them, won't you?

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2 Comments | Leave a comment

The Mariners appear to be building their 2010 roster much like Herzog built his 1980s teams - see the addition of Figgins to a lineup featuring Ichiro, Gutierrez, and so on.

It's not a perfect comparison, but...

It'll be interesting to see if it's as successful. I know that teams are emphasizing speed, etc. more now that home runs seem to be down.

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Rick Ankiel 83.9%
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