Posted on November 18, 2009 at 8:17 AM
Filed Under: St. Louis Cardinals
News continues to be a slow and very small trickle at this time of year, so I was a little surprised to see an interesting story on the Post-Dispatch
website this morning. According to John Mozeliak, Jason Bay is not a priority
It's quite a change from the interest the organization had in Bay just a few years ago and, honestly, it's what most of us expected them to look at if Matt Holliday didn't return. Bay is the second-biggest bat on the market and, with the focus on giving Albert Pujols somebody to hit with, you'd think he'd be more in the crosshairs of the club.
Apparently, besides the fact that he's gotten older since the time they really wanted him and there's been a change in leadership since then, they are a little leery about his defensive work. As Erik Manning pointed out
, though, if they don't like Bay due to defense, how in the world could they possibly be considering trading for Adam Dunn, as the article points out later on? I'm pretty sure Bay would outpoint Dunn on that scale handily.
Does that mean that they might go in the other direction for protecting Pujols, putting runners on ahead of him? The more that I heard about Chone Figgins, the more it is intriguing to put him at third base. However, I do still want to see what David Freese can do as well, so there's an issue. I'm not sure Figgins works as well as an outfielder, though I know he can play out there.
Mozeliak indicated that the Cards might go the pitching route to use some of those Holliday funds if he doesn't come here, though John Lackey doesn't seem to be on the list. I'm a pitching guy. I love pitching. I stockpile aces on my rotisserie teams, even though all the experts say not to. (Of course, I also very rarely win my rotisserie leagues, but that's beside the point.) I was the one pushing for a Roy Halladay trade back in June, drooling over a Chris Carpenter-Roy Halladay-Adam Wainwright top of the rotation.
That said, without Lackey, I'm not sure what pitcher out there really puts the Cardinals into a much better position. Lackey and Randy Wolf are the only Type A pitchers out there (and I'm sure they are hesitant to lose the draft picks that come with signing a Type A) and the rest of the squad
isn't that inspiring either. No one you want to make the face of the offseason, at least. There are some interesting names--Rich Harden is one, though of course you might only get him for half a season due to his injury history--but no one that you can say definitely makes the team better.
It's possible a trade could happen, of course, but I'm not sure they can put together a package to get a top-notch starter. They have trade chips, sure, but to the level that would ease fans after losing Holliday? I don't know about that. Be interesting to see what direction they go in. Of course, they could just wind up resigning Holliday, but you get the feeling they aren't real confident in that.
Want to talk more Cardinals today? Joe Strauss is having his weekly chat
, of course, but tonight the Pitchers Hit Eighth
guys host the UCB Radio Hour
. So give them a call and talk some ball!
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