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Cardinals Get Holliday

Posted on July 24, 2009 at 2:10 PM
Filed Under: Oakland A's | St. Louis Cardinals
Well, Albert Pujols may read this blog, but obviously the front office doesn't.

If you haven't heard by now, you are probably living in a vacuum or really have a strange idea about where to turn to for your news, but Matt Holliday is a Cardinal and Brett Wallace, Clayton Mortensen and Shane Petersen are A's.

It's enough to make you run through the five stages of grief.  I spent the morning sure it wasn't going to happen, very angry that it was actually going to happen, skipped over the bargaining and went straight to depressed that it had happened, and now am moving to the acceptance that it has happened and there's nothing we can do about it, so move on.

The price of Wallace was bad enough, but the other two as well, including probably one of our top pitching prospects?  For that, I was expecting that Oakland was paying the rest of Holliday's salary or at least had allowed for a window of negotiation where the Cards would work on locking down an extension.  Instead, the Cards just get back $1.5 million of the $6 million Holliday is earning the rest of the way.  Really?

According to Derrick Goold on Twitter, the organization is hoping to get him in and do the sell job that way, like they did with Mark McGwire, Jim Edmonds and Scott Rolen.  There are three problems with that.

One, it's a different game nowadays.  I think it's harder to use that hometown discount/sea of red motivation than it was a few years back.

Two, Matt Holliday is a Scott Boras client, a client that Boras has indicated will see free agency.  None of the other guys were Boras players.

Three, the Cardinals gave up more in this trade than any of the other trades.  They are risking a lot on the fan base, a fan base that Tony LaRussa was at odds with just earlier this week.  

It just reminds me of Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars: "I'm taking an awful risk, Vader.  This had better work."

So the Cardinals have again dealt with Oakland, after the majestic Mark Mulder trade that most Cardinal fans have yet to forget or forgive, even five years later.  (That happens when one of the guys you give away turns into a top 5 pitcher while the guy you get breaks down almost immediately.)  Perhaps, if this trade is going to be completely analogous to the earlier one, we should care more about losing Mortensen instead of Wallace.  The big prospect we gave up in the Mulder trade, Daric Barton, created much angst, but hasn't exactly set the world on fire.  If Haren hadn't blossomed, that'd have been a no-win deal.

What's done is done, though, so Cardinal fans have to pick themselves up and welcome Holliday into the fold.  For what it's worth, national writers think the Cards did OK for themselves and may have set themselves ahead for an October date.  Keith Law does make the point that he leaves the tougher AL and that should help some, though the idea that power fastballs "knock the bat out of his hand" doesn't make me feel great for postseason.

Tony LaRussa finally got his man.  We'll find out if it was worth the cost.

It's likely that Holliday will be in the lineup tonight, making me quite aggravated that events are going to conspire to keep me away from the TV tonight.  Looking forward to seeing him in Cardinal red this weekend and hopefully giving this offense the boost he was acquired for.

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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%
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John Rooney 84.5% (up 3.0%)
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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%
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Kyle Lohse 68.9% (up 13.8%)
Al Hrabosky 66.4% (up 3.2%)
Colby Rasmus 46.5% (down 35.3%)

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%

Rick Ankiel 83.9%
Chris Duncan 69.1%

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