2021 Rotation

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  • #141392
    Avatarbccran
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    Guys who are starters, or can start if necessary –

    Flaherty
    Hudson
    Kim
    Mikolas
    Waino (if signed)
    Martinez
    Ponce
    Gomber
    Woodford
    Reyes
    Cabrera
    Gant
    Oviedo

    And coming up quickly –

    Liberatore
    Thompson
    Rondon

    That’s almost an embarrassment of riches.
    16 guys. Some will be in the bullpen, but should we make a trade for a bat or two?
    Or keep all of them for depth.

    #141398
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    Flaherty, Mikolas and Waino are basically locks to start if healthy. Jack is the ace of the staff, and Mikolas and Waino will eat innings as #3-5 starters.

    Hudson is a lock to start if he’s healthy, but that elbow is worrisome. If he needs TJ, he’ll be out most if not all of 2021.

    I love KK as a starter. If Hudson is out, I might put him as a lock to start. He’s gonna give you solid innings and his stuff plays well.

    Reyes and Carlos are the question marks. They have the best stuff on the staff, but control can be an issue. I’m not sure you could find a taker for Carlos right now unless you sell at a deep discount. Perhaps he pitches well in October to build value. Alex has looked dynamite out of the bullpen. He could stay there. Ironically, I believe that he might pitch even better (overall) as a starter, where he can work off his fastball, which has been the one pitch he’s seemed to control well. Would you rather have a 3+ WAR starter or a 1.5 WAR reliever? Nice luxury to have.

    Ponce is a dark horse candidate for a starter, but I like him in the fireman role. His pitch counts won’t be an issue then and he can sling it at 96-97 with movement. Gomber can fill in as we’ve seen, and be the long man. If there are injuries he can stretch out to start again, perhaps.

    Gant hasn’t started in a while, so I’d imagine he stays in the pen. Cabrera looks tailor made for a late inning role, so I think he stays in the bullpen as well.

    That leaves Woodford and Oviedo. Woodford is more polished right now, but he has a ceiling of a #5 starter, IMO. I’d keep him in Memphis as a guy who could be called up in case of injuries. Oviedo just needs more seasoning. I think he’s gonna be a good one. He starts in Memphis too and would be the primary call up to fill in for long term injuries. The other three, Rondon starts in Memphis, Liberatore and Thompson in Springfield with the hope to move to Memphis.

    My preference of your guys:

    StL Rotation-Flaherty, Waino, Mikolas, Hudson (if healthy), KK, Carlos

    StL Bullpen-Reyes, Gant, Gomber, Ponce, Cabrera

    Memphis-Woodford, Oviedo, Rondon

    Springfield-Thompson, Liberatore

    #141399
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    I should also add that the guys that would be potential trade bait for me would be Carlos, Gant, Ponce, Gomber, Woodford and Oviedo. Not that I want to be rid of any of them, but they’re the type that we could absorb the loss of and still have a pretty good staff with plenty of potential to backfill soon from the minors. Maybe some team would take them on in a trade if they like them to fill in their rotation on the cheap (obviously, Carlos wouldn’t be cheap and Oviedo has a higher ceiling than the others).

    #141401
    Avatarbccran
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    Excellent, 25. Some great points.

    #141402
    Avatargscottar
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    I don’t see Reyes and Cabrera as starters. They seem to be thriving in the pen and we have many other starter options, although that could change with trades and injuries. Hopefully Mikolas and Hicks come back strong next year. Hudson is also a big question mark health wise. We should get news on him today or soon thereafter.

    #141403
    Brian WaltonBrian Walton
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    For a trade to get a really good bat, it will take considerable talent and pitching is clearly the team’s strength.

    I just taped my Danny Mac podcast and one thing I noted is that all these pitchers, even if they can’t start, make the relief corps even stronger. It also has kept them for the most part from having to resort to bringing guys in off the scrap heap to fill roster openings. Primarily a home-grown staff and most of those not drafted as Cardinals were acquired before they were established as major leaguers (Waino, Cabrera, Gant, Gallegos and Webb).

    #141404
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    I don’t see Reyes and Cabrera as starters. They seem to be thriving in the pen and we have many other starter options, although that could change with trades and injuries. Hopefully Mikolas and Hicks come back strong next year. Hudson is also a big question mark health wise. We should get news on him today or soon thereafter.

    I agree on Cabrera. Reyes’ health is what gives me caution on him as a starter. If the Cards decide to use him in the pen I won’t be upset, but his repertoire is that of a starter. If the Cards decide to explore that, I won’t be upset either.

    #141406
    Brian WaltonBrian Walton
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    Reyes wants badly to start. Always has. I mentioned to Danny Mac today that his situation could be like CMart last year at this time. Shildt and Maddux told him what he needed to do to get the chance to start. He then worked all winter to check off all the boxes. I’d like to see Reyes get one last opportunity to fulfill his promise. His talent has never changed.

    #141409
    Avatarbccran
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    Many of the bullpen guys were starters before they turned pro and we’re converted to the bullpen right away as a pro. Others were starters at the lower levels as a pro and were converted to the pen coming through the system. And then there are a few select guys who were always relievers and somehow made it all the way through the system, competing with the converted starters, who are usually the more talented guys. Elledge was a closer at Dallas Baptist University. John Brebbia wasn’t even a closer for Elon University. Just a setup man. Cinderella story. Fairly rare examples.

    #141411
    jj-cf-stljj-cf-stl
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    IF the sole purpose is to raise Carlos trade value, that’s easiest done by micro-managing him as the closer, not trusting him with 5 or 6 IP every 5th day. Let him rack up saves and include him in a deadline deal when closers are at a premium to a contender struggling to close games.

    Flaherty, Wainwright and KK have earned rotation spots in this abbreviated season. Mikolas should return and assuming Hudson will not, it’s a SP5 discussion between Martinez, Gomber, Reyes and PDL for me.

    I prefer Gomber and Reyes both get rotation consideration over Carlos because their continued development looms large in 2022 where we may lose KK and Wainwright from the rotation. With Gomber in the rotation I like Cabrera in the pen.

    A pen with Gallegos, Hicks, Gant, Brebbia, Cabrera and at times one of Gomber / Reyes can afford to deal away Carlos next deadline with increased value. Increased value is all I’m looking for, not max value, and as the closer it seems a safer strategy to get his trade value up to tradeable.

    #141417
    Brian WaltonBrian Walton
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    An effective starting Martinez is more valuable than an effective closing Martinez.

    #141420
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    jj and Brian, the answer for Carlos and Reyes alike may be the same…starting provides the chance to get the greatest overall value from both.

    In Carlos’ case, the best case scenario would be that he pitches well enough as a starter to accrue some value to a team that might see him as a guy they could acquire for 3 years to start. Then if Oviedo or Rondon or Liberatore are looking ready enough to make the jump in late 2021 or by spring 2022, you have an excess starter with value. If he’s a reliever, you’re trading him as a rental asset only. No one is picking up his 2022 and 2023 options to pay him unless he’s the greatest closer in the game. You’re going to get minimal value at best for a rental closer who’s being paid $11.7M. I, too, accept that max value for him is long gone. But I don’t want to trade him away for nothing, either. The only way you get anything for him, IMO, is as a starter.

    Reyes doesn’t have the same strings attached, per se, but 150 innings of high level starting has more value than 70 innings of high level relieving. The team may see no opportunity for him to start, or he may be beat out in ST by Carlos or KK or whomever. That’s a luxury the team can afford at this point. As an arb guy who probably won’t make more than $10M total the next three years no matter how well he pitches, that’s not a bad luxury to have.

    #141422
    Avatar14NyquisT
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    Coming into ’20 we were loaded with high level pitchers. Going into ’21 we are in the same position… plenty of arms (actually too many for the MLB/AAA rosters) but besides Hudson they haven’t quite yet materialized into MLB starters. Its to be determined who will rise to the top. We had the same situation in the outfield at the beginning of this season… we have the bodies but they are all struggling to replicate their AAA production into MLB starting types.

    The 2021 rotation at this point is the same as in ’19…. with the addition of Kim. There are many assumptions that one would have to encounter going into next season. Health-wise will Hudson-Hicks Brebbia-Mikolas return at 100% because they all will figure into putting a pitching staff together. Will Wainwright be able to put together the same #s as he has this year? If not, who do you pencil into his place? and Mikolas? and Hudson? Those are situations that need to be considered.

    If trades are necessary will Liberatore-Oviedo-Thompson-Rondon hit their potentials? and when? Like I stated we have the arms to consider but who will step up into the rotation? I don’t see Martinez fitting into this discussion…. and I said the same at the end of last season. He remains a large question mark and has declined in value. I see the group of four above passing him soon enough as rotation candidates.

    #141424
    jj-cf-stljj-cf-stl
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    I’ve gave up on max value for Martinez (SP’r). My scenario hopefully gets him up to tradeable value, and we move on.

    If others want to try for max value from him as a SP’r, I get it, and agree that’s where his potential max value resides.

    There is the potential to get tradeable value for him as a SP also. The rub is if he maxes his value as a SP, who wants him dealt away?

    After 2018 I mentioned many times, now is the time to cash in on Carp. It wasn’t a popular opinion, even with Mo who extended him. Max value from Martinez in 2021? I’d feel the same way, cash in.

    #141425
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    I would trade him if he maxes out as a SP. Even though he would be Cy Young material, I would trade him. That would take away the uncertainty of exactly how he would pitch.

    #141426
    RatsbuddyRatsbuddy
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    I said this in another thread. I’ll say it again.

    Carlos Martinez and Alex Reyes. 2021 is pivotal for them. In my mind they have never lived up to expectations. Whether that was caused by injury is another point I guess. I think part of Martinez issue is because of his goofy antics.

    Anyway, if they fail to live up to expectations in 2021 then in my mind its time to let them hit the road. Trade and get what you can. Dont resign them. Whatever. Sooner or later these two either have to fish or cut bait.

    r/Esteemed Rat

    #141428
    Avatarforsch31
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    I posted this in another thread not too long ago:

    Looking forward to next year, there will be a real competition for pitching spots. The Cardinals are in a great position to make a trade or 2 or 3 to help the team.

    SP:
    Wainwright (re-sign for another year)
    Kim
    Mikolas (probably unable to trade)
    Flaherty (would consider trading for a superstar)
    Hudson (would trade for an upgrade in the field)
    CMart
    Oviedo
    Woodford
    Gomber
    Cabrera
    Reyes
    plus we have Rondon, Seijas, Thompson and Liberatore that will be ready shortly.

    We need to take advantage and make some trades to improve the team. CMart would be my top choice to trade. Hudson would be the one who I would use to try to get another team to give up someone who will make a real difference. I would love to be able to trade Mikolas but I don’t think they can right now.

    The recent events with Hudson throws his 2021 into question. I would still love a rotation of: Wainwright, Kim, Mikolas, Flaherty and Gomber. If Reyes would show he could be a starter, I would make a blockbuster trade of Flaherty to get someone special for the offense.

    #141429
    Avatar14NyquisT
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    I am still holding hope out for Reyes. He has a chance to increase his stock because he’s a former #1 pick, (and you know how the organization feels about them) while Martinez’ star is declining.

    #141430
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    I’ve gave up on max value for Martinez (SP’r). My scenario hopefully gets him up to tradeable value, and we move on.

    If others want to try for max value from him as a SP’r, I get it, and agree that’s where his potential max value resides.

    I’m not suggesting we go for max value at all. I’m suggesting we go for any value.

    Trades are about surplus value, of course. We know pretty much what Carlos is worth both starting and relieving (his numbers are very similar). We also know what his salaries will look like based on his contract ($11.7M-17M-18M).

    Under your scenario, he’s the closer for for few months. Teams would then be looking to trade for a guy making some portion of $11.7M. That’s in the very good but not best closer salary range. Carlos has been more in the good category of his career, so let’s say he’s a 1-1.5 WAR yearly range, or about $8-12M value. Carlos also has a $1M trade assignment bonus that kicks in when traded, so that’s another money for the trading team. Essentially, a team gets 0 surplus value next year in a trade, at best. After that he has the two options. $17-18M is elite closer money. He’s not that, so they decline the option and pay him $500K and part ways. So a 0 surplus closer who’s a rental gets you…??…in a trade?

    As a starter, we know Carlos too. He’s been a 3-4 WAR starter every year. Let’s take the low number. That’s around $24M in value. If he’s pitching decently at the deadline a team would be getting essentially some portion of that value for a portion of salary. Maybe then they think about exercising that option, because $48M value is more than his $35M salary. For quick math’s sake, let’s say the Cards trade Carlos and the other team gets $4M of value next year and $13M the next two years total. $17M value gets you…??…in a trade?

    Fangraphs has a nice article on prospect values here:

    An Update to Prospect Valuation

    Since we know the deadline upticks the kind of players you might get a little, maybe you get a long shot flier or a languishing relief arm or two at the deadline for Closer Carlos, but you may get a 100ish ranked prospect and a flier for Starter Carlos. Again, this is not max value, because we know that time has passed. It’s the difference between getting nothing and getting something.

    #141433
    jj-cf-stljj-cf-stl
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    Well, we disagree 25, and that’s ok. I respect your opinion.

    My priority is Gomber and Reyes both receiving 16 GS and 100 IP for 2021, if Hudson is out. I think it prepares us better for 2022 when KK and Adam could are possibly gone.

    I’d also like for 25 to 30 saves to land on Martinez as he gets traded away (2021), instead of paying for those saves multiple years on Hicks and Gallegos arb resumes’. Not a major consideration, but you know how saves pay in the arb process, and we’re usually tight on funds:)

    If Mo wanted to sell low on Carlos, I’d endorse it. I just don’t like how he forgets to compete if everything doesn’t go his way. I guess that’s my bottom line. You have to compete well all the time, to get my hat-tip. Not be a superstar, just compete your best. I don’t see that as too much to ask.

    #141434
    Avatargscottar
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    jj wrote:

    Let him rack up saves and include him in a deadline deal when closers are at a premium to a contender struggling to close games.

    While he tried to rack up saves the fan base would be racking up ulcers…lol

    Frankly, I think it is too late for him to rebuild his trade value for this winter unless he has a couple of scoreless 7 inning appearances in the next week and then we go on a long postseason run with him being very impressive. The odds aren’t in his favor of that happening.

    I think the Cardinals should trade him to any team that is willing to take on his entire salary next season even if the return is meager because that $11.7M could be used to find a big bat, however, I don’t think any team would take him on at full salary. The question is how much of the salary would the Cardinals eat. If they have to eat too much then it defeats the purpose of moving him, which is to free up payroll space.

    #141436
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    I respect your opinion too, jj. I would like to comment on one thing you said, however…

    If Mo wanted to sell low on Carlos, I’d endorse it. I just don’t like how he forgets to compete if everything doesn’t go his way. I guess that’s my bottom line. You have to compete well all the time, to get my hat-tip. Not be a superstar, just compete your best. I don’t see that as too much to ask.

    I see this quite a bit along with some other colorful ways of putting it such as “goofball,” “basket case,” “head case,” and more. While I can agree that Carlos appears at times to lose focus, I always go back to the stats to see if they actually tell the story that so many offer. Now, maybe you are referring to specific cases like if there’s an error or a missed play or whatever, but I don’t know if any stats I can find will tell that story. I did find these, however:

    Bases empty: .243/.317/.360 .677 OPS
    Men on: .241/.323/.356 .679 OPS
    RISP: .221/.316/.321 .637 OPS

    Now, maybe that’s too broad and you’re thinking of something more specific and there are stats for him with the bases loaded, men on each and every base, etc but for the most part it appears like he’s about the same whether men are on or not, and gets better with RISP.

    I would admit that I think the characterization that he doesn’t compete or that he’s mentally weak is unfair or at least more based on perception than stats, and that he gets that label at least in part based on comparison to others who in most cases don’t look any better under the same scrutiny (Waino is .682-.682-.675 in the same splits and Flaherty is .600-.685-.729. Carpenter was .697-.740-.737, Gibby was .607-.644-.624)

    #141437
    jj-cf-stljj-cf-stl
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    If I say anymore I come off as a Carlos hater, and I’m not. I have a mental picture of him with an IV in his arm, in a hospital bed. He’s been through a lot this season, and maybe his best is yet to come.

    #141439
    stlcard25stlcard25
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    He’s been through a lot this season, and maybe his best is yet to come.

    I always go back to the fact that Max Scherzer didn’t become MAX SCHERZER until his age 28 season, same as Carlos. Not saying that he’s gonna be that guy, but the stuff is there. I wouldn’t bet my life savings on it, which is why I’m OK with trading him. I’d like it to be for something that isn’t just clearing a few bucks for Dewitt to pocket or minor league filler. I’d hate to see him pitching for the Astros or Yankees and looking like the guy we hoped for when we traded him for peanuts. It happens, though.

    #141440
    Brian WaltonBrian Walton
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    stlcard25 said:

    I’d hate to see him pitching for the Astros or Yankees and looking like the guy we hoped for when we traded him for peanuts.

    Then the mob would be calling for “clueless” Mo’s head!

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