Spring training 2019

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This topic contains 213 replies, has 24 voices, and was last updated by Avatar thejager 2 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #83739
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    1982 willie
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    well in my opinion the cardinals are wrong in their dealings with Flaherty and hicks and probably others. yea they may be young players but hicks especially was used just like an old vet but yet the cardinals use the system to not pay them their worth. are the cardinals alone no but that doesn’t make it right. with the way these young guys are trotted out there and pitch their hardest every pitch, they are one pitch away from an injury that may prevent them from getting all that money in the future some people mention. im not saying they had to go crazy and give them ridiculous money, they deserved more just based on their efforts last year. it isn’t like the cardinals have really opened up their vault the last few years.

    #83740
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    The $10K penalty seems petty. On the other hand, in five years from now when Flaherty may finally become a free agent, it may not matter much.

    As far as players not re-signing, who have the Cards lost in free agency that they wanted to keep since Heyward and before him, Albert? I can’t think of any right now.

    1982, as far as doing what is right, the system is not going to change until the next CBA. If you want to fight for inequity, how about getting on the minor leaguers bandwagon? They are paid less than minimum wage.

    Here are some other players across MLB who were renewed for relatively low amounts. If you don’t like it, blame the system.

    https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2019/03/notable-pre-arb-salaries-bregman-flaherty-hicks-ohtani.html

    #83743
    BlackHillsCard
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    My comment wasn’t about the system as a whole but the childish move to only sign him for $7,000 over minimum after offering him $17,000. That’s very petty. The Cubs and Happ couldn’t agree to terms last year and they still signed him to the $25,000 over minimum they originally offered. I just don’t understand the pettiness here.

    Maybe you’re right and the Cardinals sign him to a guaranteed contract next year, but if they don’t I can see this being a sore subject for Flaherty down the road.

    However, the system is pretty garbage when the A.L. Cy Young Award winner is only making $18,700 over the minimum but that argument is best reserved for a different thread.

    #83766
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    gscottar
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    I do not like defending our FO (believe me I really don’t), but in this case I think Flaherty and Hicks need to calm the **** down, pardon my language. They have played ONE YEAR!!! I think they need to earn a little more street cred before they try to run the union.

    #83770
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    My understanding is that all Hicks said was, “It’s no big deal” and moved on. Flaherty is the one who made the expanded comments. He has the makings of a good team union rep – down the road.

    #83804
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    bccran
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    Flying down to Jupiter tomorrow.
    Who’s going to be down there over the next week?

    #83810
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    gscottar
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    My understanding is that all Hicks said was, “It’s no big deal” and moved on. Flaherty is the one who made the expanded comments. He has the makings of a good team union rep – down the road.

    We can start referring to Flaherty as “Boras Jr.”

    #83817
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    gscottar
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    This is what I have been talking about. A bullpen of CMart, Reyes, Miller, and Hicks will mean lights out for the Brewers and Cubs and the rest of the NLC. An average to solid rotation combined with a lights out nasty bullpen means a division winner in my opinion.

    I’m not sure Shildt and the FO are on the same page though. I hope Shildt wins out.

    https://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/ben-frederickson/benfred-cardinals-bullpen-could-be-scary-good/article_cdad1247-1142-5228-939f-feea9d3fad48.html

    • This reply was modified 3 months ago by Avatar gscottar.
    #83821
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    Several of the marginal relievers are injured as is Martinez, making the initial decisions coming out of camp easier.

    #83822
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    forsch31
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    If the team should pay Hicks and Flaherty more, then Fowler, Cecil, Wainwright, Holland and Gregerson should have to return some of the amount paid to them. They didn’t earn what they were paid.

    #83823
    stlcard25
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    This is what I have been talking about. A bullpen of CMart, Reyes, Miller, and Hicks will mean lights out for the Brewers and Cubs and the rest of the NLC. An average to solid rotation combined with a lights out nasty bullpen means a division winner in my opinion.

    Unfortunately, I think the rotation is going to be below average. Mikolas and Flaherty should be fine, but Wacha can’t stay healthy, Waino may be toast and Hudson is a big unknown. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that this is the second worst Cardinal rotation in some time (2016).

    I’m getting more pessimistic about this season as it approaches. I see a lot of streaky hitters and a marginal pitching staff. Where I once thought they were the best team in the division, I now fear they are on an edge where a Goldy regression and Flaherty injury could make them an 80 win team.

    #83830
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    When Wacha is healthy, he is good. When not, then Gant, Gomber or Ponce step in. The length of Wainwright’s leash is an open question, but they have choices. Hudson will have bumps, but he has a pretty good arm. I am glad if he gets the fifth spot as I think he has the most upside of the contenders. I bet this rotation even without CMart is in the top half of MLB.

    The offense has been weak this spring, but hard to assess with so many minor leaguers playing.

    #83831
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    forsch, that is an interesting concept of salary balancing. Wainwright specifically has pocketed close to $80 million alone since his last good season, 2014, yet all folks harp on is Cecil and Fowler.

    #83833
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    gscottar
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    I won’t post all of Bernie’s latest article in The Athletic but the last paragraph probably echoes the concerns of many Cardinal fans.

    10. My top concern: The Cardinals will launch the season and a tough opening stretch without deploying their best possible lineup, bullpen or rotation because of payroll politics, stubbornness in refusing to admit personnel errors, fretting over minor-league options or making blatant misjudgments. A proud franchise in a passionate baseball town shouldn’t make such compromises. If the Cardinals want to compete in the postseason for the first time since 2015, they have to go with their best players.

    #83835
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    Cardinals27
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    Even as the 25 man roster is starting to take shape a couple personnel questions still have yet to be resolved.

    1) Who will be the closer? My guess is Miller and Hicks would share this role situationally.

    2) Who is the 6th starter? My first thought would be Gant, as he would start the season in the bullpen. Anyone else would be riding the Memphis- St Louis shuttle.

    #83836
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    CariocaCardinal
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    My money is on Reyes to be the closer by the end of April.

    The 6th starter usually comes from Memphis were someone is already stretched out (I dont agree with that strategy but it is what it is).

    Isnt the big question whether they break camp with 12 pitchers or 13? That not only determines the pitching roster but also the bench.

    #83837
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    gscottar
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    Pena is supposed to be back by the end of the week. What are the odds he ends up winning the backup C job in the last 10 days of camp?

    #83838
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    CariocaCardinal
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    Negative 5% barring injury to yadi or weiters

    #83841
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    Cardinals27
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    I believe they will start with 12 pitchers per pitching coach Maddux. If pitchers cannot get thru 5 or 6 though, a 13th pitcher might be needed. Gant and Reyes might prove valuable bridges for a pitcher with a high pitch count to the back of the bullpen by pitching multiple innings.

    #83842
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    CariocaCardinal
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    I heard Maddux but have also heard Mo talk about 13 in interviews. I think another unproven starter (Hudson) increases the chance of 13. I think Reyes will open in the bullpen which also increases the chance of 13.

    #83844
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    gscottar, on the surface, it is hard to disagree with Bernie’s passionate #10 above, but it assumes the worst and lacks the all-important details behind it. Most who are balanced understand making optimal decisions for opening day can compromise depth later.

    Far, far too much is made of the initial roster, when we all know it will change almost immediately. Even if the pen is seven on Opening Day, it will likely expand to eight once all the open days on the April schedule are past. Last season, 49 players appeared with St. Louis. Depth matters over a six-month season, which means you may not have the best players all the time.

    Talk to me about specifics instead of generalities designed to stir up emotions and I might be interested.

    For example, exposing Gant or Mayers to waivers just because they are out of options might enable the Cards to put the “best 25” on the roster day one. (Of course, that assumes we could all agree on who the “best 25” are, which is impossible in itself.) But then on day two, when injuries strike, the fill-ins are of lesser quality.

    Same with trading Gyorko to make room for both Munoz and O’Neill. Then Carp goes down next week and you immediately wish you had a third baseman as dependable and proven as Gyorko. Then, the columnists will cry how short-sighted the front office was, trading away important depth.

    Or, if he means releasing Cecil and Gregerson, they will probably open on the IL anyway, so it does not matter. If he means releasing Fowler, that is premature. Wainwright may or may not be one of the best five starters, but what would they do with him instead?

    See, that is the beauty in being forceful, yet purposely vague. Then the readers are left to try to guess what is being intended, or worse, take it at face value without thinking it through. Never get pinned down that way. Not my cup of tea, but people make careers of it. I’ve had these kinds of discussions over the years and when they do get pinned down, they say, “I don’t care how they handle it; they need to fix it.” To me, that means they don’t know the answer. They just want to complain.

    #83851
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    gscottar
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    Those are fair points. He wasn’t specific, at least not in that paragraph.

    My concerns would be not going with the best bullpen that we could because of contracts and player options, but as you point out, there are some risks either way. I get it. I would just prefer they err on the side of winning as many games as possible instead of controlling service time, waivers, and contract obligations, but I know it isn’t always black and white.

    #83852
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    “Err on the side of winning as many games as possible” in early April – even if it might mean losing more games in May, for example? If there was a magic formula that would optimize all variables to define the best roster moves to win the most games OVER SIX MONTHS, it would be the optimal answer. In the real world, however, it is just one opinion vs. another, which is great for a message board, at least!

    #83854
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    forsch31
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    Brian, some like to champion that the players need more money and point at players like Hicks and Flaherty as examples of underpaid players. All the while, they ignore that other players are overpaid and the clubs’ can do nothing about it because they have a contract. In fact, some would argue that is OK because the owners make so much money. If there is a system in place, both sides have to play by the rules that both sides implemented.

    #83855
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    I agree 100%, forsch. Sadly, we have close to three years of complaining ahead until there is a new system.

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