2019 closer/relievers thread – Miller + ?

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This topic contains 259 replies, has 35 voices, and was last updated by Avatar Bob Reed 10 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #78402
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    Well, Grichuk was traded last January and Norris was signed in February. They have stated repeatedly they will add a left-handed hitting reserve infielder and a back up catcher and maybe another reliever, too. There could also be some surprises. Why be so glum? Merry Christmas!

    #78408
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    14NyquisT
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    Not glum…. what’s so bad about what we have right now??? I like the bullpen candidates we have. I’m not looking to add to them just to add someone different. Didn’t we try that last year????

    I see you mentioned Norris, the one BP guy that actually worked out, for one season. And at the time he was was considered ho-hum.

    I also forgot the panicked move of bringing Holland in at the 24th hour.

    #78409
    Brian Walton
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    I didn’t see Holland as a panic move, but hindsight absolutely confirms it was ill-advised.

    To me, it serves as a good reminder that even though the front office said one thing clearly for months (that they were not going to sign an expensive closer), the real issue was the price. When that dropped, they changed their tune.

    It did not work out, but we should not be so critical about the fact they were willing to spend money to try to improve the then-current team. Of course, the biggest damage was not the money wasted, but the games lost because Holland pitched so badly. No one expected that poor of an outcome from the guy who led the league in saves the season prior.

    #78415
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    gscottar
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    Most of the heavy lifting is probably done but there will be more moves. And you never know if another big opportunity will present itself or not. If it does, the Cards have the payroll room to pounce.

    #78428
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    forsch31
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    I don’t see any reason that the Cardinals should be done. They could still do something no one expects like signing Robertson or Kimbrel to add to the ‘pen. Either of them could really help the team become a favorite to reach the World Series. There are actually quite a few possible trades or signings that could happen to help the team. I am not going to look at the pessimistic side until spring training starts.

    #78462
    Brian Walton
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    Ny, coincidentally, in Goold’s chat this week, I saw an aside in the middle of an answer about something else. In it, Goold said that Matheny had put on a big push for the team to sign Holland. So, I guess in your eyes, the front office panicked by taking the manager’s recommendation instead of ignoring it?

    It also is another data point in conflict with the contention made by bccran that the manager has no input on personnel moves. If Goold’s reporting is accurate, and I have no reason to doubt it, they spent $14 million and a top draft pick based on the manager’s request to add Holland.

    It is all history anyway, but still interesting…

    #78479
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    14NyquisT
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    Signing an aging reliever without him having gone through any spring training, IMO, seems to have been a panic move. Mozeliak has tended to make those type of decisions lately. If you use Goold as a reference, that is a stretch. Did Holland appear to be the right guy at that time? No, and I don’t think that it was Matheny putting a contract in front of Holland and handing him a pen.

    Like you stated its all history and water over the dam. Better to file it away as another FO fail.

    #78480
    Brian Walton
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    14NyquisT wrote:

    If you use Goold as a reference, that is a stretch.

    Really? I understand that some people might not like his style, but I have seen very, very few question his credibility as a reporter. And I would have to wonder what they base that perception on. Some get angry because they think he is a mouthpiece for the team, which is a common complaint about many beat reporters. Goold seems to go to significant effort to explain he is reporting what he hears from the Cardinals. He seems to be diligent chasing other sources when appropriate, but of course, chats are more informal than articles on page 1 of the sports section. Could the team try to influence public perception based on the info they share or not share? Sure, but when all is said and done, that is up to us to try to sort through.

    #78483
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    14NyquisT
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    There is a hint of the Card’s fandom questioning Goold’s reporting as 100% accurate lately. It seems that he is having to defend his credibility more and more, and he is sounding like another organizational puppet. He has been offering up some kool-aid. Anyway that is how I perceive his reporting now, and you can remember that it wasn’t long ago that I was a fan of his and I have no problems with his style of writing.
    (not as good as your’s though).

    I file this away in the “how the mighty have fallen” file.

    #78486
    Brian Walton
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    Back to relievers, I am not defending anyone, but let’s return to the end of spring training and the start of the season. Gregerson was hurt most of the spring and opened the year on the DL. Cecil was Cecil. Norris was just expected to be another guy. Leone and Lyons fell short of expectations. The best reliever this spring was Mike Mayers, for Pete’s sake.

    If any move could have been labeled as “panic”, it was to push Hicks onto the team after he had been dropped from camp a few weeks before and had never pitched an inning at Double-A or Triple-A. In hindsight, we call that “visionary” instead of “panic” because it worked. I remember thinking as the season opened that the pen looked really rough, so if Matheny saw it the same way, I could hardly blame him.

    The team took a shot at trying to get better and spent a lot of money doing so. Instead of giving them credit for trying, the second-guessing calls it “panic”. Had they done nothing, the cries would have been that they were too cheap and just sitting on their hands as the pen failed.

    P.S. Holland was 32, hardly aged, and was the reigning league saves leader. Yes, it turned out very badly, but it was not a crazy attempt.

    #78491
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    14NyquisT
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    I feel that Holland was almost set up to fail here, the timing was terrible for him. He gets to WAS and he’s a new guy… MRivera-esque.

    #78492
    Brian Walton
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    I agree that Holland had multiple strikes against him, and Boras didn’t help, by insisting his training camp was the same as the real thing.

    Let’s not exaggerate Holland’s time in DC. The Nats got him for next to nothing and used him in a low pressure role. They were so impressed, they have not brought him back for 2019. Let’s see what kind of contract he gets this time. It will be less, not Mo. 😉

    #78496
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    14NyquisT
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    We don’t have to exaggerate, but let’s just take a look.

    STL- ERA 7.92… 32 G….25.0 inn…. 22K… .312 BAA… 2.24 WHIP
    WAS- ERA 0.84… 24 G….21.1 inn…. 25K… .130 BAA… 0.89 WHIP

    Even if he was pitching against a short-season team, those are good numbers.
    Quite the transformation in my estimation.

    #78497
    Brian Walton
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    SSS does not equal transformation, IMO. They kept him away from the ninth inning for the most part and his FIP was quite a bit less impressive, 2.97, though he was clearly much better than in StL. But, yes, a Mo Rivera comp based on 21 innings of mostly set-up work IS exaggeration. 😉

    #78505
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    CardsFanInChiTown
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    Has a Shelby Miller reunion been discussed in any threads?

    If not, I know he was non tendered. If he would accept a minor league deal with the expectation of being used out of the BP, I think he’d have the stuff to be a possible bullpen stud coming out for just an inning or two. Just a thought….

    #78508
    Brian Walton
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    We probably should have a Shelby Miller thread as Goold has reported the Cards have interest. There are two problems as I see it. One is that all it would take is for one team to offer a big-league deal to lose him. That is probably what he is waiting for. Second, we don’t know that he is willing to give up the dream of starting.

    If I was him, knowing that starters make more money, I would keep trying until no one gives me a chance to start, and if I could start, I would not sign with St. Louis. As we just discussed in another thread, even the Triple-A rotation could be loaded.

    On the other hand, if I was him and was ready to be a reliever, the Cardinals could be a good as any of a place to land.

    For these reasons, I am assuming Miller will end up elsewhere. Probably all 30 teams would take him on a minor league contract, and if he has to resort to that, he will look at where his opportunity will be best.

    #78511
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    CariocaCardinal
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    Article in The Athletic (paywall) thinks Miller and Shreve should both improve against lefties this year. Miller mostly because of injury recovery and Shreve because he hasn’t been capitalizing on his high spin rate (16th highest in the majors) by elevating his fastball. The writer thinks elevating his fastball would make his fastball better and his slider devestating against LH hitters.

    https://theathletic.com/731998/2018/12/24/pitch-data-suggests-andrew-miller-chasen-shreve-will-solidify-left-side-of-cardinals-bullpen/

    #78512
    Brian Walton
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    Optimism from the MLB account on Twitter.

    #78513
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    CariocaCardinal
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    Potentially? Maybe Results? Definitely not!

    #78519
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    mudville
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    I don’t understand at all how people can emphasize Holland’s failure in St. Louis, and de-emphasize his success in Washington. Yeah, lets throw out all of Holland’s prior success in MLB, plus his remarkable success in Washington after leaving St. Louis. Then, lets just say that when Holland came to St. Louis he was terrible and it was all his fault because he’s a lousy pitcher. Yeah, lets just say that. Then, lets blame the FO for making a stupid mistake for signing him, and that Boras fooled everybody. I don’t know what happened to Holland while he was here. But, at the time of the signing, it looked like we were getting one of the best closers in the game on a reasonable one-year contract.

    #78521
    jj-cf-stl
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    That winter Holland was the last guy left on the market. Maybe 29 other GM’s evaluated him correctly? Maybe 30 GM’s but our gm granted MM his request?

    #78544
    Euro Dandy
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    Potentially? Maybe Results? Definitely not!

    Yep, what are the chances two guys side-by-side in the same pen, who were very average last year, simultaneously rise to the top of the league? Seems crazy to hype it this way, but there is some potential to get the juices flowing. Hicks had an awful K/BB ratio for a guy with his stuff.

    Maybe Hicks learns how to harness his stuff somewhat this year. Maybe Miller shows it was just a case of random, short-term ailments that slowed him last year, and Father Time is still a ways out on the horizon. Then it could happen.

    • This reply was modified 10 months, 2 weeks ago by Euro Dandy Euro Dandy.
    #78554
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    14NyquisT
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    SMiller will not be in a Card’s uniform again.

    First off, he wants to start. He’d be too far down on our depth chart for that to happen.
    Second, he won’t forget that the Cards traded him for the underachieving Heyward. He has some pride.
    Thirdly, he wasn’t well like in the Loo because fans wanted more from him.
    Fourth, didn’t we just acquire a pitcher named MILLER.

    #78563
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    atripleshyofthecycle
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    he won’t forget that the Cards traded him for the underachieving Heyward. He has some pride.

    The underachieving Heyward had a 5.6 WAR in his one year for the Cardinals.
    The prideful Shelby Miller has had a total of 4.3 WAR in his 3 years since the Cardinals traded him.

    #78564
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    atripleshyofthecycle
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    I don’t understand at all how people can emphasize Holland’s failure in St. Louis, and de-emphasize his success in Washington. Yeah, lets throw out all of Holland’s prior success in MLB, plus his remarkable success in Washington after leaving St. Louis.

    Are you talking about the people here on this message board or the people in Major League front offices (who get paid millions of dollars to know what they are doing) who have refused to give him a contract for next season?

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