Mo's view of the off season

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This topic contains 99 replies, has 19 voices, and was last updated by  bccran 4 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #35481

    CardsRedSox4Ever
    Participant

    Mozeliak interviewed today gave a few insights into how they are approaching the off season. Most surprising to me is the lack of acknowledgement of poor play this season, but only said that each player, coach and management needed to do better in their job because “we’re always trying to improve”. The two targets he mentioned for shoring up in the off season: a big bat that other teams “fear,” and improvement in the “back of the bullpen.” He also declared criticism of Matheney as unfair, implying that some coaches may go, but Matheney is safe. Was asked about Stanton as a possible acquisition, but wouldn’t comment on any specific names.

    Glad to see they are considering an impact bat and at least marginal changes in the bullpen, but discouraging there’s apparent little concern for the poor defense, poor situational hitting, poor base running, poor on field management we saw this year. Liliquist let go because he didn’t embrace the data driven analysis most teams rely on, not because the pitching staff underperformed. Really, Mo?

    Maybe they’ll surprise me, but the problems on this team are much deeper than the lack of an elite clean up hitter and a deeper bullpen. We’ll be watching off season moves close as soon as the Series is over.

    #35484

    Cardinals2016
    Participant
    #35485

    LoganAlpha30X7
    Participant

    Then again what Mo considers a big bat and what most would consider a big bat could be two VERY different things, perhaps Mo is just in denial about how badly this year went…

    #35486

    CardsRedSox4Ever
    Participant

    So true. Mo’s big bat is probably not what we’re thinking.

    #35488

    bccran
    Participant

    Ty O’Neill.

    #35496

    EuroWolf
    Participant

    Mo peaked a while back.

    #35497

    bccran
    Participant

    Pham
    DeJong
    O’Neill
    Bader

    That’s going to be a good middle of the lineup.

    #35498

    Onyxgem
    Participant

    Sorry if that is middle of our lineup we miss postseason for 3rd year in a row

    #35500

    bccran
    Participant

    Conjecture.

    #35502

    mudville
    Participant

    Pitching, pitching pitching. This team failed because it was built around pitching, and the pitching failed. If Cecil alone would have performed up to expectations, this team would have at the very least gotten a wild card. Then, there was Oh, and Rosenthal, and Reyes going down early, and Wainwright injured for the last two months of the season. We had enough to win this year.

    #35503

    forsch31
    Participant

    Your view that they are a good middle of the lineup is as much conjecture as Onyxgem’s view that having them will mean missing the playoffs for the 3rd straight year.

    #35505

    bccran
    Participant

    My conjecture is tongue in cheek.
    They’re goin hard after a middle of the order bat this off season. My wish is Hosmer via free agency and Ozuna in a trade.

    #35506

    bccran
    Participant

    I truly think that Mo feels he has a huge PR problem if he doesn’t land a big name this off season. Preferably 2.

    #35507
    BlackHillsCard
    BlackHillsCard
    Participant

    Hosmer is another 20 HR guy. I love his BA and OBP but not really the power hitter this team needs. Also, he’s only had 2 seasons hitting over .300, however many players peak about the 27-29 year age range.

    #35509

    bccran
    Participant

    He’s the type of leader they’re looking for, though. That’s why he and Ozuna would be a good combination.

    #35511

    Brian Walton
    Keymaster

    mud, we also discussed this on another thread, but the bullpen was statistically very good. Specifically, the Cards were sixth-best of 30 MLB teams in save percentage. The bullpen had the 7th-lowest ERA in MLB.

    My theory is the offense gave them too few/small leads, so the bullpen was expected to be too fine and they could not deliver consistently.

    #35512

    NJ315
    Participant

    This team needs offense. A feared hitter.

    #35513

    bccran
    Participant

    WHIPS –

    Broxton – 2.17
    Siegrist – 1.60
    Socolovich – 1.66
    Oh – 1.40

    #35514

    Brian Walton
    Keymaster

    Cardinals bullpen WHIP as a group was 1.27, ninth-best in MLB. Still top third.

    #35515

    Brian Walton
    Keymaster

    Direct bullpen comparison, 2017.

    ERA: Cubs 3.80, Cards 3.81
    WHIP: Cards 1.27, Cubs 1.30
    Save conversion percent: Cards 71.67, Cubs 66.67

    #35516

    bccran
    Participant

    I know the team numbers. But the 4 I listed really hurt. How do you measure the number of games that weren’t blow saves, but allowed teams to come from behind or extend their leads in the 7th and 8th?

    #35518

    bccran
    Participant

    Here’s an interesting stat. By far the highest ERA by the Cardinals pitchers on an inning by inning basis was the 8th – 4.89 ERA.

    #35519

    mudville
    Participant

    I understand that there are statistics that indicate that the bullpen was very good compared to other teams. But there were numerous times when Cecil came into a game and got lit up. The argument that Cecil’s numbers weren’t that bad is irrelevant, IMO. He was expected to get ours, and should have gotten outs. The same goes for Oh. He got lit up when all were expecting him to be about as good as he was last year. To me, it doesn’t matter that much what the numbers say because the reality is that Cecil and Oh were terrible most of the time, and if they had been good, we surely would have at least gotten a wild card. Also, when I say say that we lost this year because of failed pitching, I’m talking about this year only. If the Cubs were as good as everybody thought they were going to be, then we would not have had a chance, and better pitching wouldn’t have helped enough for us to win. I understand that we need more offense. But if it weren’t for the fact that there are big time bats out there that we could realistically acquire, we wouldn’t even be talking about acquiring a big bat. It is a complete anomaly that players like Stanton and Ozuna can even be in a conversation. Its comparable to St. Louis talking about trading Pujols and Edmonds when they were in their prime.

    #35520

    Brian Walton
    Keymaster

    bccran, the way the save rule works is that if another team comes from behind against the bullpen, it is a blown save – no matter the inning in which it occurs.

    mud, I respectfully disagree with your last statement. I first called for the need for a big bat last winter. I did so looking at the team’s strengths and weaknesses and it had nothing to do with which other players were believed to be “available”. A need is a need.

    P.S. I am not saying the pen cannot be improved. A consistent closer will go a long way, as we saw with Nicasio in September. He was a lot easier to secure than a middle of the order bat would be.

    #35522

    SoonerinNC
    Participant

    Just a few figures to illustrate some of the source of our woes. Don’t have all of the data but at least 95% correct.

    In 2017 the Cardinals had 28 players who were signed and developed within the organization perform at the major league level. Fifteen were position players and 13 pitchers. Position players contributed 16.0 WAR and pitchers 7.2 (not included are pitchers batting numbers).

    In 2017 the Cardinals had 7 players (3 position, 4 pitchers) perform at the major league level who were acquired in trades. Position players had a cumulative WAR of 6.0 while pitchers had a 6.7 WAR for a total of 12.7. We gave up 7.9 in 2017 WAR to acquire those players.

    In 2017 the Cardinals had 12 players (5 position, 7 pitchers) perform at the major league level who were signed as free agents or purchased outright or claimed through Rule V. Brebbia was signed from the Independent Leagues. Position players had a cumulative WAR of .8 while the pitchers had a cumulative WAR of 2.9 for a total of 3.7. 2017 Salaries for the 12 players was 56.8 Million. Actually less because of trades that relieved us of some of the salary.

    I did a quickie review of 22 of the top Cleveland Indians players. Results are 9 of the 22 developed in the system with a WAR of 20.3, 2 free agents at a 2017 cost of 16.2 Million and a WAR of 4.7 and 11 acquired in trades with a cumulative WAR of 32.2. Particularly painful is that when we traded for Westbrook from Cleveland the Indians recieved Cory Kluber (2017 WAR 8.0) as part of a 3 team trade. Of course we were looking for short term help and Kluber was still in the minors. I didn’t check the Cubs so I suspect that they have a similar trade value as the Indians and a much more productive group of players signed as free agents.

    Mo has signed some impactful free agents who helped us when we were getting into the post season such as Berkman, Beltran and Peralta who fizzled out this year. Also he picked up Holliday and Freese in trades. But you could conclude from the data that he has been too reliant on the minor league system for help and that worked in other years. And we got good help from the minors in 2017. But the tough thing about relying on the minors is that we seldom get a draft pick earlier than 20th in the first round. The Bryants, Harpers and the Lindors don’t make it past the first 10 selections.

    You can also make a case that Mo has been very reluctant to make trades for meaningful players other than Holliday.

    All of this came crashing down in 2017.

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