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The STL Cardinals Thread - NL Central Champs!

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1 hour ago, ttitansfan4life said:

Shildt pitching Wacha on short-rest on Wednesday. Yikes

Probably only looking at 4 innings from him anyway, so makes some sense...

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I know this is hardly the time that any of you are looking to hear about offseason ideas, but I had been tinkering with this plan, and with Football ready to shift into gear, I wont be thinking about this for a bit, so I figured Id throw this out there for now. Just an idea of how I would try to approach the offseason;

The biggest issue we will have to address is the Outfield, and it all hinges on what we decide with Dexter Fowler. He has had a much better year than I predicted for him (but thats not saying much from the bottom of the league where I thought would come in) but we also have nearly 8 other OF options before even the possibility of re-signing Ozuna. I am only detailing this out because Dex still has his Full NTC for the next 2 years of his contract. But with all this young talent, and shrinking ABs for him, I think this is a time he may waive that clause to get to a spot for some PT.

TRADE:

  • Dexter Fowler to San Francisco
  • Jordan Zimmerman to St Louis
  • Brett Cecil + Jose Martinez + Yario Munos + Stevan Duggar to Detroit

Some reasoning behind each squad; The Giants dont really see themselves in a full rebuild, and assuming MadBum is back with them, they will be going for the West again, but their OF has been a mess, and no one is really standing out of the potential many thought they had out there (sounds familiar). One of those guys they are sending out in this deal in Duggar who may never be the same after injuries have derailed him. Other than him, some fans are seriously clamoring they DFA Pillar as to not have to pay him (probably wont happen) but immediately Dex could possibly be their number one OF and probably a Top of the order hitter for them. But in the end, they are really making this move as a lottery ticket, because all that it really costs them is dollars. The Tigers on the other hand are in full rebuild mode, and what they are trying to do is move out as much money as they can. Unfortunately Zimmerman hasnt been good enough to even just give away for some low A prospects. They will have to do this with some other Money swap, and taking back some decent pieces that may never really make it isnt a bad move for them. Martinez and Duggar could be something for them, probably not in the long run, but they have the ABs to give them a shot and see what they really are, and Munos is really just a Utility man that they could flip to a contender later. The tricky piece will be Cecil (the $ that actually makes this work) as he still has that NTC, but coming off a serious injury, its not that big of a deal where he rehabs his value in a contract year, plus the likelihood that the Tigers flip him to a top contender for a playoff run is much higher. And finally for the Cardinals, we take on the final year of a big money deal in order to get out of the extra year on Fowler's contract. Plus moving Dex and Jose clears up the OF and Bench for the cheaper and younger talent. (StL is actually cash flow positive for 2020 on this deal) and Zimmerman is an arm that you can use as either a #5 starter to eat up the innings that we havent had in a while, or even as the #6/long reviler.

Re-Sign:

Marcell Ozuna OF 4 years/ $65m

  • There has been plenty of discussion on this board already on what will take to get Ozuna back. This is a more than fair deal for what he has actually produced in the past 2 years since trading for him, and as I look at the rest of the league I dont see 5 years out there (especially from a contender, which I think is important to Ozuna after his years in Miami) and I think it is ridiculous to think he will see anything close to $19m AAV on anything longer than couple of year deal. He wants to be here, and giving him $16+m AAV (makes him a Top 15 OF) with a chance for one more short high dollar contract at the end of his career. We searched for a power bat for years, and gave up a solid package to get him, I dont think we let him go without a fight here.

Adam Wainwright P 1y/$2m

  • Its the same contract he got this year, with alot of incentives that he will hit if he is still useful. I read the other day, the idea that we bring back Waino for one more (especially as useful as he has been) so he and Yadi can ride off into the sunset next year together. At first I thought, no way, Yadi has a chance to stick around a few more, but then i realized how much 16 years of Catching does on a body, and how long it took him to get back this year. And frankly it makes sense. But as for Waino, he can battle in Spring Training for that #5 starter spot, but I think it is more likely he ends up being a BP arm in 2020, and wouldnt it be fitting, if he somehow ended his career taking over as Closer for this team since we probably wont be seeing Hicks till 2021.

John Gant P 1y/$2m (Arb1)

  • Honestly this is just a guess on the Arbitration for Gant, but he will be solid, probably be one of the first options if a Starter goes down, and a good weapon out of the BP otherwise.

Free Agency

David Freese UTL 1y/$3m

  • I know not all that exciting, and probably a bit of a surprise, but with alot of guys with positional versatility already filling out the bench (mostly Edman) we can go out and grab us one of the best Pinch Hitters of the past few years. Even with a small hitting surge in the past few seasons, Freese is likely on his last legs. And since we are on the farewell tour of recent Cardinals legends, it would be kind of cool to bring him back. Plus we are probably on the short list for him to try and chase one more ring.

Roster

So after an interesting 3 way trade, some smart re-signings, likely a waiting game for Ozuna, and a lack luster Free Agency period otherwise it is time to trim down the roster;

The Rotation is mostly set, with only the #5 starter really being up for grabs, assuming health and that Hudson finishes the season as strong as he is going right now

  1. Jack Flaherty
  2. Carlos Martinez
  3. Miles Mikolas
  4. Dakoda Hudson
  5. Jordan Zimmerman

With projecting Zimmerman in the rotation, that leaves Adam Wainwright to lead the BP, along with Andrew Miller, John Gant, John Brebia, Austin Gomber, Giovani Gallegos and Genesis Cabrera. Not all that flashy, but I think a pretty good Bullpen that can get the job done. All with Webb, Healsly and PDL ready to jump in if needed.

And when it comes to the Lineup, I think a bit of a shake up will need to happen with no longer having Fowler and adjusting for what Carpenter now gives us

  1. Kolten Wong - 2B
  2. Paul DeJong - SS
  3. Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
  4. Marcell Ozuna - LF
  5. Matt Carpenter - 3B
  6. Yadier Molina - C
  7. Tyler O'Neill - RF
  8. Harrison Bader - CF
  9. Pitcher/DH

And with Bader/O'Neill getting the first crack at the open OF spots, I think the young guys backing them up (Lane Thomas and Randy Arozarena) will see alot of time as well unless one of them makes a big jump. Andrew Knizer takes over as the full time backup, ans in what is probably Yadi's final season, should be getting more games than your average backup Catcher. Then ofcourse Tommy Edman as our Super Utility guy, and David Freese rounds out the bench as our best Pinch Hitter.

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33 minutes ago, StLunatic88 said:

I know this is hardly the time that any of you are looking to hear about offseason ideas, but I had been tinkering with this plan, and with Football ready to shift into gear, I wont be thinking about this for a bit, so I figured Id throw this out there for now. Just an idea of how I would try to approach the offseason;

The biggest issue we will have to address is the Outfield, and it all hinges on what we decide with Dexter Fowler. He has had a much better year than I predicted for him (but thats not saying much from the bottom of the league where I thought would come in) but we also have nearly 8 other OF options before even the possibility of re-signing Ozuna. I am only detailing this out because Dex still has his Full NTC for the next 2 years of his contract. But with all this young talent, and shrinking ABs for him, I think this is a time he may waive that clause to get to a spot for some PT.

TRADE:

  • Dexter Fowler to San Francisco
  • Jordan Zimmerman to St Louis
  • Brett Cecil + Jose Martinez + Yario Munos + Stevan Duggar to Detroit

Some reasoning behind each squad; The Giants dont really see themselves in a full rebuild, and assuming MadBum is back with them, they will be going for the West again, but their OF has been a mess, and no one is really standing out of the potential many thought they had out there (sounds familiar). One of those guys they are sending out in this deal in Duggar who may never be the same after injuries have derailed him. Other than him, some fans are seriously clamoring they DFA Pillar as to not have to pay him (probably wont happen) but immediately Dex could possibly be their number one OF and probably a Top of the order hitter for them. But in the end, they are really making this move as a lottery ticket, because all that it really costs them is dollars. The Tigers on the other hand are in full rebuild mode, and what they are trying to do is move out as much money as they can. Unfortunately Zimmerman hasnt been good enough to even just give away for some low A prospects. They will have to do this with some other Money swap, and taking back some decent pieces that may never really make it isnt a bad move for them. Martinez and Duggar could be something for them, probably not in the long run, but they have the ABs to give them a shot and see what they really are, and Munos is really just a Utility man that they could flip to a contender later. The tricky piece will be Cecil (the $ that actually makes this work) as he still has that NTC, but coming off a serious injury, its not that big of a deal where he rehabs his value in a contract year, plus the likelihood that the Tigers flip him to a top contender for a playoff run is much higher. And finally for the Cardinals, we take on the final year of a big money deal in order to get out of the extra year on Fowler's contract. Plus moving Dex and Jose clears up the OF and Bench for the cheaper and younger talent. (StL is actually cash flow positive for 2020 on this deal) and Zimmerman is an arm that you can use as either a #5 starter to eat up the innings that we havent had in a while, or even as the #6/long reviler.

Re-Sign:

Marcell Ozuna OF 4 years/ $65m

  • There has been plenty of discussion on this board already on what will take to get Ozuna back. This is a more than fair deal for what he has actually produced in the past 2 years since trading for him, and as I look at the rest of the league I dont see 5 years out there (especially from a contender, which I think is important to Ozuna after his years in Miami) and I think it is ridiculous to think he will see anything close to $19m AAV on anything longer than couple of year deal. He wants to be here, and giving him $16+m AAV (makes him a Top 15 OF) with a chance for one more short high dollar contract at the end of his career. We searched for a power bat for years, and gave up a solid package to get him, I dont think we let him go without a fight here.

Adam Wainwright P 1y/$2m

  • Its the same contract he got this year, with alot of incentives that he will hit if he is still useful. I read the other day, the idea that we bring back Waino for one more (especially as useful as he has been) so he and Yadi can ride off into the sunset next year together. At first I thought, no way, Yadi has a chance to stick around a few more, but then i realized how much 16 years of Catching does on a body, and how long it took him to get back this year. And frankly it makes sense. But as for Waino, he can battle in Spring Training for that #5 starter spot, but I think it is more likely he ends up being a BP arm in 2020, and wouldnt it be fitting, if he somehow ended his career taking over as Closer for this team since we probably wont be seeing Hicks till 2021.

John Gant P 1y/$2m (Arb1)

  • Honestly this is just a guess on the Arbitration for Gant, but he will be solid, probably be one of the first options if a Starter goes down, and a good weapon out of the BP otherwise.

Free Agency

David Freese UTL 1y/$3m

  • I know not all that exciting, and probably a bit of a surprise, but with alot of guys with positional versatility already filling out the bench (mostly Edman) we can go out and grab us one of the best Pinch Hitters of the past few years. Even with a small hitting surge in the past few seasons, Freese is likely on his last legs. And since we are on the farewell tour of recent Cardinals legends, it would be kind of cool to bring him back. Plus we are probably on the short list for him to try and chase one more ring.

Roster

So after an interesting 3 way trade, some smart re-signings, likely a waiting game for Ozuna, and a lack luster Free Agency period otherwise it is time to trim down the roster;

The Rotation is mostly set, with only the #5 starter really being up for grabs, assuming health and that Hudson finishes the season as strong as he is going right now

  1. Jack Flaherty
  2. Carlos Martinez
  3. Miles Mikolas
  4. Dakoda Hudson
  5. Jordan Zimmerman

With projecting Zimmerman in the rotation, that leaves Adam Wainwright to lead the BP, along with Andrew Miller, John Gant, John Brebia, Austin Gomber, Giovani Gallegos and Genesis Cabrera. Not all that flashy, but I think a pretty good Bullpen that can get the job done. All with Webb, Healsly and PDL ready to jump in if needed.

And when it comes to the Lineup, I think a bit of a shake up will need to happen with no longer having Fowler and adjusting for what Carpenter now gives us

  1. Kolten Wong - 2B
  2. Paul DeJong - SS
  3. Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
  4. Marcell Ozuna - LF
  5. Matt Carpenter - 3B
  6. Yadier Molina - C
  7. Tyler O'Neill - RF
  8. Harrison Bader - CF
  9. Pitcher/DH

And with Bader/O'Neill getting the first crack at the open OF spots, I think the young guys backing them up (Lane Thomas and Randy Arozarena) will see alot of time as well unless one of them makes a big jump. Andrew Knizer takes over as the full time backup, ans in what is probably Yadi's final season, should be getting more games than your average backup Catcher. Then ofcourse Tommy Edman as our Super Utility guy, and David Freese rounds out the bench as our best Pinch Hitter.

Not the biggest fan of this honestly. I'm at work right now so I really can't go into it fully, but I hate the Dexter trade and Waino's been having his best season in a few years, why would he again take a 1 yr/$2 million dollar deal? unless he's determined to retire a Cardinal, you would have to think some team offers him more than that on the open market. And Jordan Zimmerman as the #5 Starter with Waino in the BP just doesn't look right. 

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1 hour ago, holt_bruce81 said:

Not the biggest fan of this honestly. I'm at work right now so I really can't go into it fully, but I hate the Dexter trade and Waino's been having his best season in a few years, why would he again take a 1 yr/$2 million dollar deal? unless he's determined to retire a Cardinal, you would have to think some team offers him more than that on the open market. And Jordan Zimmerman as the #5 Starter with Waino in the BP just doesn't look right. 

Hit the nail right on the head there. No team would touch him last offseason, and we stuck with him. We made it plenty lucrative for him this year, his deal has a ton of escalators in it. Hes already picked up an extra $4m, and hes only 4 starts away from another $2m. So thats really a 1 year $8m deal. I think he does something almost exactly the same, and either he gets a bit higher base salary, or his escalators have larger jumps (I think everyone would be more comfortable with that)

As far as Zimmerman vs Waino not "looking right" I cant help you there. I just think that they would be nearly identical as far as production next year, but Zimmerman could eat up the innings better than Waino on his last lap. Plus I like the idea of JZ in a true contract year (after he has been nothing but disappointing) and I think that Waino could legitimately be the Closer for all of 2020 (and it might be a better way for him to hit incentives than trying to start 30 games again)

 

I get the Fowler trade doesnt look all that appealing, I had the seeds of this planted for me way back in like April, and Fowler has been better than expected. But for the same money (basically) you wouldnt rather have Ozuna than Fowler? Because thats what the deal accomplishes. Along with opening up a spot for the young OFs that we have (basically the Carlson spot in 2021, and we see who the 3rd OF is for that year and we can move the others for useful parts)Plus it moves off an extra $10m in contracts we arent even using. Cant imagine its Cecil you want to keep around. Munos is basically nothing at this pint, especially with Edman on the team. Is it Jose? Because we saw last year he has next to nothing in value on the market, and that has dropped even more at this point. Jose+Duggar+Munos is basically the compensation for taking on Cecil's $7.5m

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57 minutes ago, StLunatic88 said:

As far as Zimmerman vs Waino not "looking right" I cant help you there. I just think that they would be nearly identical as far as production next year, but Zimmerman could eat up the innings better than Waino on his last lap. Plus I like the idea of JZ in a true contract year (after he has been nothing but disappointing) and I think that Waino could legitimately be the Closer for all of 2020 (and it might be a better way for him to hit incentives than trying to start 30 games again)

Zimmermann is going to eat innings?  He's averaged less than 123 IP per season since he has signed with the Tigers.  That's not eating innings.

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1 minute ago, CWood21 said:

Zimmermann is going to eat innings?  He's averaged less than 123 IP per season since he has signed with the Tigers.  That's not eating innings.

More than to be 39 y/o Wainwright or what we have been trying to do with Wacha, I think so.

And Honestly Im thinking more of him just eating them all at the start of the season, and then we can upgrade Post ASB via Trade or Call Up (Healsley/Reyes)

 

I know trading for an expiring contract isnt flashy or fun, and much more of an NBA style move, but it would help solve alot of things. And I even said, if Waino or Gant or Helsley beat him out, Zimmerman can be a 6th Starter /Long Reliever. Im not tied to anything, I just think thats how it would shake out in Spring Training

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I really wonder what we'll do with Gant. Is he a long term bullpen piece or do they try to get him starting again?

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6 hours ago, MOSteelers56 said:

I really wonder what we'll do with Gant. Is he a long term bullpen piece or do they try to get him starting again?

I think he's been such a weapon as a late inning BP guy, you leave him be...

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Nice work-out on the offseason @StLunatic88.  I'll give a couple of my thoughts:

- Don't see Fowler being dealt. They've stuck with him through the bad and hes had a pretty good bounce back year as I've alluded to several times. He's also impressed with his ability to hit leadoff and be a table setter again the last 2 months. Given Carpenters struggles this year and being an unknown going into next season for that role, I think that works to Fowler's advantage. Agree on Carlson's ETA being 2021. I think that also works in Fowler's favor. Probably more likely to move Fowler in the 20-21 offseason, as he'd be in final year of his deal and could probably find more of a market. Lastly, I don't think Fowler would waive his NTC to go to the Giants. They're a really old roster and getting worse with little in the pipeline.  They're a team in transition (or should be)...

- Agree on the Carlson ETA being 2021...

- Want no part of Jordan Zimmerman. Not only is he expensive, he's just not good anymore. As @CWood21 pointed out, he's not an innings eater. He's always hurt. He's only had 1 season in last 4 years where he's made at least 25 starts. Rather just keep the more productive player...

-Given the glut of MLB ready OF prospects we have (Thomas, O'Neill, Arozarena, Garcia, Carlson) I think your much more inclined to see us deal from that depth for assets. I specifically think a guy like O'Neill could be a target. He's never really been able to take advantage of his opportunities via injury or struggles. He could be an attractive change of scenery target for another club...

- Agree on looking long/hard at resigning Ozuna. He's what you need at #4. I think your projection on years is spot on, but $16.5 AAV on the open market is little low IMO. He's still one of the most premiere bats available. I don't think he gets $20 AAV. Probably closer to a split of those numbers. I could see between $17-18 AAV...

-Would love to have Freese back, he'd be perfect PH guy and can play 3B or 1B spot duty...

- Don't see Waino coming back to be anything but a SP. I don't think he'll go anywhere else, as he's said he only intends to pitch for Cards, but I don't think he'd have any issue just hanging it up. He's got multiple business ventures/philanthropy projects and young kids. He's got other things besides baseball and honesty could step right into broadcasting as well...

- I think you could very well see us target a controlled SP in the trade market. Guys like Matt Boyd, Caleb Smith or possibly even Max Scherzer if Nats explored dealing him...

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Last night was rough after Goldy put us up late but glad the team came out today and has put up a big hitting day.

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I know there wasn't much pressure to perform in a 10 run game, but it is exciting to see Genesis pitch as well as he did. 3 scoreless innings. Not bad.

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