The Front Office's place in all of this chaos.

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This topic contains 418 replies, has 35 voices, and was last updated by Brian Walton Brian Walton 1 hour, 56 minutes ago.

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  • #77771
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    Cardinals27
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    But it is just another potential roadblock to anyone who might want Fowler or Cecil, which would be few or none, and the few would require eating another bad contract.

    #77775
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    I just doubt an NTC would be a significant roadblock to a trade in any case when the player is unhappy where he is currently. That is not why they are not tradeable.

    #77792
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    mudville
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    I don’t understand why anyone would want to change anything in a FO that just gave us Godlschmidt. Then, add to the that the Cardinals’ list of prospects, a list which includes players like O’Neill, and Jhon Torres, and Genesis Cabrera who were acquired by trade. Can we really expect that another group of executives is going to improve on that? There have been the mistakes of Leake and Cecil which MO and the rest of the organization are duly paying for. But its still too early to say Fowler was a mistake. The talent is there.

    #77794
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    NJ315
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    Holland, Gregerson???

    #77795
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    NJ315
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    This year will tell us a lot about the FO going forward.

    #77796
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    mudville
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    Holland reverted to becoming one of the best relievers in MLB after he left St. Louis. (Is there a common thread that links Holland’s performance and Fowler’s performance?) Gregerson was a gamble on low hanging fruit which obviously turned out to be ‘fruitless’…. so far.

    #77823
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    atripleshyofthecycle
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    They need to keep the people making minor league decisions, and dump everyone involved in the Major League decisions.

    I love getting Goldschmidt, but it doesn’t take a sharp mind to go after a guy that good. Sharp minds in our front office wouldn’t be throwing away $40 million on players who figure to gave you less than zero WAR last year (and this doesn’t include Wainwright, because I’m not going to fault our FO for him).

    This front office has a terrible record with MLB contracts and decisions. That specific group should have gone with Matheny in on purge.

    #77824
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    It would be pretty easy to find other teams stuck with worse contracts than the Cardinals. The Cards are in especially good shape compared to most other teams on long term commitments.

    The Cardinals have made mistakes in recent years, but none that are crippling. Expecting any front office to be perfect is not realistic.

    For example, just up the road, the Cubs spent almost $60 million this year on Darvish, Chatwood and Heyward. And Darvish and Heyward’s contracts are going to be with them a long time, limiting them from being able to make other moves as we are seeing this winter. Going back to Boston, Theo has a long history of bad contracts, but he has three rings. Mo only has one.

    #77825
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    atripleshyofthecycle
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    I’m not sure that using Heyward’s albatross of a contract is really a defense of Mo, who offered as much or more.

    I get that other teams make bad deals, too. They fork over huge dollars for 6 WAR players and get burned. We fork over big dollars for 6 or 7 one (or less) WAR players and get burned – both with money and with a clogged roster.

    I’m not saying the job is an easy one, but there has to be someone better at identifying ways to spend limited budget dollars on lesser players. Thankfully, it is limited to our MLB guys. How many millions have we burned on mediocre talents that performed worse than our MiLB replacements would have?

    This is why superstars are far more valuable than people think. Guys you know can give you 4+ WAR, year in and year out – you over-pay for those guys and just surround them with arb and pre-arb guys. We have had the young talent to do this over the last several years, but we wasted money on second-tier gambles that crapped out.

    #77832
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    14NyquisT
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    there has to be someone better at identifying ways to spend limited budget dollars on lesser players. Thankfully, it is limited to our MLB guys. How many millions have we burned on mediocre talents that performed worse than our MiLB replacements would have?

    Unfortunately, our FO has failed at identifying and HAS wasted money on players that underachieve and that also waste roster spots.

    I would rate our FO D-/F and try to improve it.

    #77845
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    mspaid
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    The Fowler contract is crippling. He has to play right field so they are precluded from signing any number of good outfielders in free agency that could actually help the team. Instead they must play Fowler who will hurt the team. Cecil is taking up a bullpen slot that could be manned by a pitcher who is actually good. No, they have made crippling moves and will make more I’m sure.

    #77846
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    Nate, your definition of crippling is different from mine. Last I heard, this is an 88-win team, with almost no long term deals. Fowler’s lack of trade value does seem to block RF acquisitions, but we may be selling him and O’Neill short. While Cecil is still on the roster today, you have heard they are looking to acquire LH relievers, correct? They don’t have to cut the roster down until the end of spring training. Until they get a look at everyone in camp or at least lock in better replacements, there is little reason to get rid of Cecil or Shreve. (I thought Shreve would be non-tendered, but I get that he is cheap insurance until they see what the 2019 team looks like. At this point, Cecil is sunk cost and would not block until opening day – other than one 40-man spot.)

    #77848
    BlackHillsCard
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    I still want to know where the FO has reallocated the money they were going to spend on Luis Robert.

    #77862
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    mspaid
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    Brian:

    Indeed we see things differently at times. I see the 88 wins as a fluke because of the miracle of August. I don’t see another miracle this year so they could revert to 83 wins. If a bad player is in a spot that should be used to upgrade the offense then that is the definition of crippling to me. Crippling does not have to mean ten years. Fowler is crippling this team for the next three years. Yes, I know they are looking for a lefthander. But they were looking for a lefthander when they signed Cecil and we see how that turned out. My confidence in the front office is zero. Junior will not eat Cecil’s contract so he’s in the pen. If they sign a good lefthander, and I’ll believe it when it happens, that is only one pitcher added to a pen that was horrible. They need two to three quality relief pitchers from the outside and a second bat for right field but that is blocked because the front office handed Fowler the right field job before the season starts. Fowler is also sunk costs…a big one. They deserve credit for Goldschmidt but he is one year rental and if they fail to win the WS in 2019 then it is a bust and they start over again. Maybe EVERYTHING will work out at every level and the Cardinals will in fact with the WS. More than likely, however, the fans will suffer the same angst next off-season that they experience every year.

    #77874
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    bccran
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    So, mspaid. You don’t think under any circumstances that they will extend Ozuna and/or Goldschmidt?

    #77889
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    gscottar
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    BlackHillsCard

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    I still want to know where the FO has reallocated the money they were going to spend on Luis Robert.

    I have wondered the same thing. Our big international “splurge” a couple of years ago was more about quantity instead of quality.

    #77891
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    14NyquisT
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    Reading PD’S Goold’s Q&A from yesterday it is fairly evident to conclude that both Goold and Mozeliak have become hand puppets for Dexy. Goold feels that Mozeliak is because of the obvious reasons of DF’s contract, Mozeliak spending so much time and effort to coddle HIS guy hoping and praying that he will be able to earn even just a small portion of his giant contract.

    Goold protects Fowler in every answer. I’ve never seen so much attention given to a player that produces so very little (in the bottom 1% of offense stats for ’18 and not to mention his poor nonchalant defensive side). Someone recently was quoted as saying like… any news is good news. I think that Mozeliak, Goold and Fowler are going with that approach. It may increase Fowler’s value without him stepping on the field.

    Ironically, at the end of the piece, Fowler is shown running with his daughter in 2016 and Fowler wearing a Cub’s uniform. It seems to be saying that that was the last time DF wasn’t “depressed”.

    #77898
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    According to my numbers, the Cards spent at least $12 million on 28 international players in the 2016-17 period. They had never spent as much as $3 million in a period prior to that. The biggest money in 2016-17 went to Adolis Garcia, Jonatan Machado, Johan Oviedo, Victor Garcia and Randy Arozarena. All except for Garcia and Arozarena were between 16 and 18 years of age.

    #77900
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    gscottar
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    Again, quantity over quality.

    #77905
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    OK, but how many guys went for more than $2.5 million in that class? I don’t know.

    What some do not understand about the international market is that it is HIGHLY relationship-driven, with many built up over years with handlers. Just waltzing in with the biggest checkbook doesn’t always work.

    In the case of Robert, the Cards were in it but did not win. Many other clubs wanted him too, but only one won. It happens. Show me a front office that gets every free agent they want.

    #77908
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    gscottar
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    I don’t know how close the Cardinals came to getting Robert but it was a missed opportunity nonetheless.

    #77910
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    SoonerinNC
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    If you doubt that the international market is heavily relationship based check out the list by Baseball America of the top international prospects. They often list front runners to sign them and that is almost always who does end up getting them.

    No way we should have picked up Nunez for $300,000 with the pedigree that he had. We have worked a number of years in establishing those kinds of relationships and it looks like it paid off with the strong showing of both of our Dominican League teams in 2018.

    #77925
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    Speaking of international, this is important.

    #77926
    Brian Walton
    Brian Walton
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    gscottar, for a refresher on Robert, please read this article. It may have been money, and considering, I cannot blame them. I forgot about the 100 percent tax.

    “The Cardinals’ bonus offer was among the most lucrative, but it was not believed to be the highest.”

    Here is the key passage:

    “…to have matched the White Sox reported offer, it would have cost the Cardinals $52 million to $54 million.” (The actual number is $52, but it probably would have taken more to unhook the Sox.

    https://www.mlb.com/news/cardinals-fall-short-in-pursuit-of-luis-robert/c-231451474

    In high-A this year, Robert had a .625 OPS and then got hurt. Before that in a short time in low-A, his OPS was .760. In other words, he did not take the game by storm in his first year. He is 21 years old, so there is time, but over $50 million is a lot of money – like six years of entire domestic draft classes bet on one player. Robert had better produce.

    #77934
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    Cardinals2016
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    If you doubt that the international market is heavily relationship based check out the list by Baseball America of the top international prospects.

    That is generally true, but there were a number of international signees that were “free agents” and available to anyone.

    Early in the cycle, Lazaro Armenteros was considered one of the top international players, if not the best. He signed with the A’s for $3 million.

    Then, you had Lourdes Gurriel, Jr., who signed with the Blue Jays for 7 years, $22 million, by waiting for his birthday to not be subject to the international bonus pool.

    There were 4-5 others who were effectively “free agents.”

    As for developing relationships part, that just goes to show the Cardinals didn’t come up with the strategy until late in the game for that cycle, long after every other team in baseball had figured out it made sense to take the penalties rather than stay within the confines. The Cardinals front office does not win any “visionary” awards.

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