I have been seeing a lot of chatter from my fellow Bloggers about Bryce Harper being a good fit with the Cardinals more so than free agent to be Manny Machado. My gut feeling tells me Harper and the Cardinals would be very compatible.
So why do we need Harper well, Bryce Harper is a diligent baseball player who produces prodigiously and yearns for a championship. Again, this will be the free agent outfielder’s age-26 season — he’s primed for his prime. He’s a career .900 OPS player. He walks well, even when he’s not hitting. Oh, and he’s that alluring lefty bat the Cardinals have coveted in the middle of their lineup.
The Cardinals will need a hard line sales pitch plus the right offer. “When you look at the past offseasons, we’ve definitely had some swings and misses,” Mozeliak said. “We’ve had some successes. We have to find a way to get over that hump. Because we now know 88 was not good enough. And our division doesn’t look like it’s going to get any weaker. It’s going to require investment and intelligence to get us over that hump.”
The Cardinals will face some changes in the coaching ranks, as third base coach Jose Oquendo has informed the team he will not return in 2019, president of baseball ops John Mozeliak announced to reporters Tuesday (links via Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and Mark Saxon of The Athletic). Oquendo, who was offered the opportunity to return, will work with the club in Spring Training but will spend the bulk of the season away from the game with his family.
In Oquendo’s absence, bench coach Ron Warner is moving to third base coach. First base coach Oliver Marmol is taking the reins at bench coach, while hitting coach George Greer will be a minor league hitting coordinator moving forward. That leaves the Cards with a vacancy both at hitting coach and first base coach, and Goold notes that Triple-A manager Stubby Clapp is expected to be offered one of those two positions if he is not hired away from the team. Clapp, who has been quite successful in his current role with the Cardinals’ Memphis affiliate, is also a rumored candidate for the Blue Jays’ managerial post (though he has denied hearing from the Jays to this point).
More out of St. Louis…
Goold notes that Mozeliak plans to speak with Rick Ankiel about the former left-hander/outfielder’s desire to make a comeback in 2019. Ankiel announced back in August that he was planning on pursuing a return to the Majors as a relief pitcher. He told Yahoo’s Tim Brown that month that he has “nothing to lose” and feels that he’s “in a better place” than he was when his career on the mound was derailed by the yips nearly two decades ago. While Ankiel would be nothing more than a roll of the dice, Mozeliak did express a desire to improve the left-handed pitching in the Cardinals’ relief corps. Zach Britton and Andrew Miller headline this year’s crop of free-agent lefty relievers, though there are ample names beyond that pair (to say nothing of countless options on the trade market).
Details of Adam Wainwright’s contract to return to the Cardinals won’t become clear for a few weeks, but Mozeliak indicated (via Saxon) the venerable right-hander was “willing to bet on himself,” adding that the risks associated with the contract are low. Obviously, that indicates that the contract will come with a fairly small base salary. It’s already been reported that Wainwright’s contract will have both rotation- and bullpen-based incentives, so the team may not yet even have a determination on what his role will be in 2019. Mozeliak did note that the rotation, which is loaded with depth options, is “probably not going to be our focus of energy.”
Rather, Saxon notes, supplementing the offense seems to be a greater focus. The preference, Mozeliak implied, would be a left-handed bat, though he added that he “[doesn’t] think it has to be.” The longstanding head of baseball ops for the Cards firmly indicated that the team hasn’t given up on Dexter Fowler being able to bounce back, though he also wouldn’t make any declarative statements about Fowler’s role in 2019. Mozeliak called the positions filled by Yadier Molina (catcher), Paul DeJong (shortstop), Marcell Ozuna (left field) and Harrison Bader (center field) all “pretty certain,” and indicated that Matt Carpenter would be in the lineup as well, most likely at first base. Beyond that, Mozeliak emphasized that he’s been a “big advocate” for Kolten Wong and hopes the defensive stalwart can continue to improve.
As Goold notes, third base and right field seemed the two most plausible areas for upgrade based on Mozeliak’s comments. That’ll lead to no shortage of speculation tying the Cards to top free agents Manny Machado and Bryce Harper, though when asked about free agents, Mozeliak explained that he has “to be pragmatic and understand what that looks like” from a long-term vantage point.
Dexter Fowler’s season was ended after he suffered a fractured foot on August 3, though it had already been a trying year for the Cardinals outfielder, as he tells Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Fowler hit a career-worst .180/.278/.298 over 334 PA, and while he said physical injuries weren’t to blame for his struggles, “I think it was more mental health” that led to the down year. Fowler had to deal with public comments from president of baseball operations John Mozeliak about his level of effort (Mozeliak apologized for citing only Fowler as part of a larger issue within the team) and a seeming rift with former St. Louis manager Mike Matheny. The Cards have thoroughly turned their season around since Mike Shildt took over as manager, and Fowler has been excited about his team’s progress and his future in St. Louis. “Shoot, I’m watching what’s happened and I’m excited for 2019….I think that’s going to be awesome. I look forward to being a part of that,” Fowler said.
The St. Louis Cardinals, in collaboration with outfielder José Martínez, announced the team will sell specially-priced $10 tickets for the upcoming series with the Milwaukee Brewers on September 24-26 to help those impacted by the socioeconomic and political crisis in José’s and bullpen catcher Kleininger Teran’s home country of Venezuela. Fans can purchase the specially-priced tickets now at cardinals.com/helpjose.
For every specially-priced $10 ticket purchased, 75% will be donated to José’s relief efforts to assist those in need in Venezuela. The team is partnering with a four-star Charity Navigator organization who has served more than 100 million people in more than 110 countries throughout the world to distribute aid items on the ground in Venezuela.
“As I think about returning to Venezuela when the seasons ends, I wanted to do something for the people of my country,” Martínez stated. “They are in need of basic things, the most important of which is food. This generous ticket offer by the Cardinals during the team’s postseason push will be a tremendous help to the cause.”
Martínez has been an integral part of the Cardinals over the last two seasons, leading the team with a .306 batting average while ranking third in games played (249) and fourth in RBI (126).
Spanish speaking fans can purchase the specially-priced tickets at cardenales.com/ayudajose.
St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals will make official today what had increasingly become obvious: interim manager Mike Shildt is going to stay in the job beyond the present season. He’s slated to receive a three-year contract in addition to having the interim label removed. Bob Nightengale of USA Today (via Twitter) and Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Twitter link) had the news.
Since taking the helm of a club that was sitting just one game over .500 just past the season’s halfway point, Shildt has guided the Cards to a 26-12 record. The club is now firmly back in contention. Of course, numerous roster moves came along with the firing of Mike Matheny, and it’s always hard to allocate praise and blame for managerial performance, but the organization obviously had cause to be pleased with the early returns on the new skipper.
The St. Louis Cardinals, in conjunction with Major League Baseball’s league-wide release, today announced their 2019 regular season schedule. The home opener for the Redbirds is set for Thursday, April 4 against the San Diego Padres as part of a seven-game home stand with San Diego (April 4, 6-7) and the Los Angeles Dodgers (April 8-11).
The Cardinals will open their 2019 season on the road with a four-game series at Milwaukee against the division rival Brewers beginning on Thursday, March 28, followed by a two-game series at Pittsburgh (April 1 & 3).
The 2019 season will feature 26 home series and 26 road series, including 14 weekend series at Busch Stadium: April 4, 6-7 vs San Diego, April 19-21 vs New York Mets, April 26-28 vs Cincinnati, May 10-12 vs Pittsburgh, May 24-26 vs Atlanta, May 31-June 2 vs. Chicago Cubs, June 21-23 vs. Los Angeles Angels, July 12-14 vs Arizona, July 26-27 vs Houston, August 9-11 vs Pittsburgh, August 23-25 vs Colorado, August 30-September 1 vs Cincinnati, September 13-15 vs Milwaukee and September 27-29 vs Chicago Cubs.
The Cardinals will host the Chicago Cubs for two weekend series (May 31-June 2 & September 27-29), including the final series of the 2019 regular season, and one mid-week series (July 30-August 1) at Busch Stadium.
The Cardinals 20-game interleague schedule will feature a pair of two-game home-and-home series with in-state rival Kansas City (May 21-22 at Busch Stadium & August 13-14 at Kansas City) and with the Oakland Athletics (June 25-26 at Busch Stadium & August 3-4 at Oakland). In addition, the Cardinals will host three-game home series against the Los Angeles Angels (June 21-23) and Houston Astros (July 26-28), and will play three-game road series at Texas (May 17-19) and at Seattle (July 2-4).
The Cardinals are scheduled to play 43 of their 81 home games before the July 8-11 All-Star Break, playing 16 home games in April, 13 in May, 14 in June, 11 in July, 13 in August and 14 in September. The Cardinals are scheduled to play home games on Easter Sunday (April 21 vs. Mets), Mother’s Day (May 12 vs. Pirates), Memorial Day weekend (May 24-26 vs. Braves) and Labor Day weekend (Aug. 31-Sept. 1 vs. Reds & Labor Day, Sept. 2 vs. Giants).
The Cardinals longest home stands of the 2019 season consist of two nine-game stands (April 19-28 & June 17-26). Their longest road trip is 10 games (June 7-16). The Cardinals will play 20 consecutive games without a day off from June 4-23 (10 home games & 10 road games).
The season opener on March 28 against the Brewers represents the first time in franchise history that the Cardinals will begin the season at Milwaukee. The two teams have faced each other three times previously on Opening Day (2004, 2003 & 1999), all in St. Louis. The March 28 season opener will also be the earliest in franchise history.
The Cardinals will make future announcements regarding game times, ticket pricing and ticket availability for the 2019 season. To view the full 2019 regular season schedule, visit cardinals.com.
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS 2019 HOME SCHEDULE
April 4, 6-7 vs. San Diego
April 8-11 vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
April 19-21 vs. New York Mets
April 22-24 vs. Milwaukee
April 26-28 vs. Cincinnati
May 6-8 vs. Philadelphia
May 9-12 vs. Pittsburgh
May 21-22 vs. Kansas City
May 24-26 vs. Atlanta
May 31-June 2 vs. Chicago Cubs
June 4-6 vs. Cincinnati
June 17-20 vs. Miami
June 21-23 vs. Los Angeles Angels
June 25-26 vs. Oakland
July 12-14 vs. Arizona
July 15-17 vs. Pittsburgh
July 26-28 vs. Houston
July 30-August 1 vs. Chicago Cubs
August 9-11 vs. Pittsburgh
August 19-21 vs. Milwaukee
August 22-25 vs. Colorado
August 30-September 1 vs. Cincinnati
September 2-5 vs. San Francisco
September 13-15 vs. Milwaukee
September 16-18 vs. Washington
September 27-29 vs. Chicago Cubs
The Cardinals have announced the waiver claim. Fowler has been moved to the 60-day DL to open space on the 40-man roster, while corner infielder Patrick Wisdom has been optioned to Triple-A Memphis.
1:36pm: Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports (on Twitter) that Adams is headed to St. Louis via waiver claim, meaning there’s no trade at play here. Rather, the Nationals will simply offload the remainder of his salary on the Cardinals in the deal. Adams is still owed about $877K of his $4MM salary through season’s end.
1:24pm: The Cardinals have agreed to a deal with the Nationals that will bring first baseman/outfielder Matt Adams back to St. Louis, reports Yahoo’s Jeff Passan (on Twitter). Between this move from the Cards and the reported impending deal sending Daniel Murphy to the division-rival Cubs, it appears that the Nationals have embarked on a late-August sale. General manager Mike Rizzo has called a press conference for 3pm ET in which he will presumably address these and any other deals that have been made witWith this trade, the 29-year-old Adams returns to the organization with which he cut his teeth as a pro player. The Cards selected Adams in the 23rd round of the 2009 draft and watched him eventually blossom into a solid Major League hitter across parts of six seasons in the organization. However, St. Louis flipped Adams to the Braves early in the 2017 season in order to loosen an infield logjam. Though Adams produced at a solid clip in Atlanta, he was non-tendered in the offseason and eventually signed a one-year, $4MM deal in Washington.
Thus far in the 2018 season, Adams has produced numbers that are roughly in line with his career marks. Through 277 trips to the plate — nearly all of which have come against right-handed pitching, given Adams’ deficiencies against left-handers — he’s logged a quality .257/.332/.510 slash with 18 home runs and nine doubles.
It’s not clear just yet how the Cardinals will utilize Adams. He’s limited to first base or the occasional dalliance into left field, and the Cards already have options at both of those positions in the form of Matt Carpenter and Marcell Ozuna, respectively. But Carpenter is capable of bouncing all over the infield and could see time at second base or third base in the event that the Nationals wish to get Adams some time at first base against right-handed opponents.
That’s perhaps the key element of the Cardinals’ acquisition of Adams. Prior to this deal, the only lefty bats on the roster were Carpenter, light-hitting second baseman Kolten Wong and backup infielder Greg Garcia. Switch-hitting Dexter Fowler gives the Cards another lefty bat when healthy, but he’s currently on the DL and is mired in the worst season of his professional career. Adding Adams will give the Cards a notable lefty bat both off the bench and against righty starters, helping to balance out the lineup and further fueling their recent surge under interim skipper Mike Shildt.
While Adams will surely receive a warm welcome in his return to St. Louis, the reunion could prove to be short-lived. He was non-tendered last winter in his final offseason of arbitration eligibility and will finish out the 2018 campaign with more than six years of big league service time. As such, he’ll be a free agent at the end of the year and free to sign with any team he chooses. It’s possible that the Cards will have interest in retaining a slugger whom they know well and clearly like as a player, but Adams will be able to field interest from 29 other teams as well.
Steve Adams MLBTradeRuors
I am so very impressed with Nolan so far. He is having a monster start to his professional baseball career and he n is clearly one of the best hitters in that league. He’s batting .302 with 10 RBI and his six home runs, which is tied for top of the league. Between June 30 and July 5, he hit five home runs in five games.
His .660 slugging percentage is 4th-best and .422 on-base plus slugging is 15th best in the Appalachian League. hasn’t even reached 60 career at bats, the power ability of the 18-year-old is rock solid. He is clearly one of the best hitters in that league. He’s batting .302 with 10 RBI and his six home runs, which is tied for top of the league. Between June 30 and July 5, he hit five home runs in five games.
I would like to share a article by Randy Reinhardt that appeared in the Herald & Review
PEORIA — Nolan Gorman’s first hit as a professional baseball player was a home run at rookie level Johnson City, Tenn.
On Friday, Gorman’s first hit as a member of the Peoria Chiefs also cleared the fence.
That’s exactly what St. Louis had in mind.
Gorman’s plus power is a huge reason the Cardinals selected the Phoenix high school standout as their first-round draft pick (and 19th pick overall) in June’s first-year player draft.
Gorman made his Dozer Park debut Saturday after an unusual promotion to full-season ball. According to Baseball America, Gorman is only the seventh player in the last 10 years to go from high school baseball to Class A in the same year.
“I think it’s awesome,” Gorman said Saturday in the Chiefs dugout 90 minutes before first pitch. “Not many guys get to do this. But at the same time, they put me in advanced rookie to start, and I showed them I could handle that so I’m here now. I’m going to show them I can handle this, too.”
Gorman terrorized the Applachian League in his short stay at Johnson City with a .345 average, 11 home runs and 28 RBIs in 142 at-bats.The Cardinals needed no more convincing to promote a third baseman who was playing prep baseball three months ago to the Midwest League. Gorman is the first Cardinal position player draft pick to play in Class A in his first season since Garry Templeton in 1974.
“My mindset hasn’t really changed,” said Gorman. “I’m playing pro ball. I’m playing every day. I’ve got to stick to the approach and try to help the team win.”
MLB Pipeline already thinks highly of Gorman. The prospect arm of Major League Baseball’s web site lists Gorman as the No. 3 prospect in the St. Louis system, the No. 9 third baseman in all of the minor leagues and the No. 100 pagainst Clinton (Iowa). The Chiefs continue that home series Sunday through Tuesday.
“I’ve heard nothing but good things about Peoria. I know the fans are excited, and I’m excited, too,” Gorman said. “Guys have more control of their pitches here. It’s been good getting adjusted to it. Getting my at-bats is going to help.”rospect overall.
Peoria took a 28-17 second-half record into Saturday’s game
Its time to check out Patrick Wisdom and what he can do at third base. I have been peaching how the Cardinals need a steady hitter at the hot corner.
The Cardinals announced that they’ve selected third baseman Patrick Wisdom’s contract from Triple-A Memphis. He’ll take the place of infielder Yairo Munoz on the Cardinals’ 25-man roster. Munoz landed on the 10-day disabled list with a right wrist sprain. To make room for Wisdom on its 40-man roster, St. Louis transferred reliever Luke Gregerson to the 60-day DL.
The 26-year-old Wisdom, whom the Cardinals chose in the first round (No. 52) of the 2012 draft, is finally in position to make his major league debut. Wisdom had been among the Redbirds’ top prospects in the few seasons after they drafted him, but his production and stock fell as he climbed the minor league ranks. To Wisdom’s credit, though, he mashed 31 home runs at Triple-A last season and returned this year to hit a solid .289/.363/.479 (119 wRC+) with 14 HRs in 405 trips to the plate en route to his first MLB promotion.
Source; Connor Byrne
ST. LOUIS, Mo. – August 6, 2018 – The St. Louis Cardinals announced prior to tonight’s series opener in Miami that they have purchased the contract of rookie outfielder Adolis (ah-DOLE-lees) Garcia from Memphis (AAA), and placed rookie outfielder Tyler O’Neill on the 10-day disabled list (inflammation of the groin area), retroactive to August 4.
García, 25, a minor league free agent signing out of Ciego de Avila, Cuba, in February of 2017, is batting .269 (94-for-350) with 21 HR and 67 RBI in 98 games this season for the first-place Redbirds, ranking 6th in the Pacific Coast League in home runs, T4th in extra-base hits (47), 7th in slugging percentage (.531) and total bases (186), and T9th in RBI.
The red-hot García is the most recent recipient of the PCL Player of the Week and Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month awards.
With his first game appearance, García, who has been assigned uniform no. 28, will become the seventh player to make his Major League debut for the Cardinals this season, joining Jordan Hicks, Yario Muñoz, Tyler O’Neill, Austin Gomber, Daniel Poncedeleon, and Dakota Hudson.
O’Neill has appeared in 23 games for St. Louis during his Major League debut season, batting .309 (17-for-55) with three home runs and nine RBI. Since his most recent recall on July 31, the Canadian outfielder has hit safely in all four games (.636, 7-11)
St. Louis Cardinals
The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have recalled rookie outfielder Tyler O’Neill and left-handed reliever Tyler Webb from Memphis (AAA). The team also announced that right-handed pitcher Carlos Martinez (right shoulder strain) has been placed on the 10-day disabled list.
O’Neill, who is batting .311 with 26 home runs (1st in Pacific Coast League) and 61 RBI at Memphis, appeared in 19 games with the Cardinals earlier this season, hitting three home runs.
Webb made his Cardinals debut on Sunday night with 2.0 scoreless innings of relief against Chicago. He’s appeared in 14 career games between the New York Yankees, Milwaukee, San Diego and St. Louis.
O’Neill wears uniform no. 41 and Webb wears no. 30.
The St. Louis Cardinals announced this morning a four-player trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, acquiring outfielder Justin Williams, left-handed pitcher Genesis Cabrera and right-handed pitcher Roel Ramirez in exchange for outfielder Tommy Pham and International Cap Space.
Williams, 22, is a left-handed hitting outfielder who was batting .258 with 8 home runs and 46 RBI for the Durham Bulls (AAA), where earlier this season he was named an International League All-Star. The 6-2, 215 pound Williams hails from Houma, Louisiana. Williams, a former 2nd round draft pick by Arizona (52nd overall) in 2013, made his Major League debut earlier this month.
Cabrera, 21, has fashioned a 7-6 mark with a 4.12 ERA in 21 games (20 starts) for Montgomery of the Southern League (AA), striking out 124 batters in 113.2 innings pitched while limiting the opposition to .218 batting mark. The 6-1, 170-pound native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic was named to the Southern League All-Star team last month.
Ramirez, 23, was 3-1 with a 3.32 ERA in 26 games as a reliever for the Montgomery Biscuits, fanning 46 batters in 40.2 innings. The 6-1, 210-pound Ramirez is from Laredo, Texas.
Pham, 30, a member of the Cardinals organization since being drafted in 2006, was batting .248 this season with 14 home runs and 41 RBI.
I was just getting ready to go to bed and got a ping on my phone, when looking at the message it said Luke Voit traded. So what is going on?
MLBTradeRumors Connor Byrne….
The Yankees have acquired first baseman Luke Voit and international signing bonus pool money from the Cardinals for relievers Chasen Shreve and Giovanny Gallegos, per an announcement from New York.
The 27-year-old Voit joins Tyler Austin as the second right-handed-hitting first baseman at the Triple-A level for the Yankees. Voit, who has a minor league option remaining, has racked up 137 major late appearances since 2017 (just 13 this year) and batted .240/.307/.432 with five home runs. He has been far better as a member of Triple-A Memphis this year, with which he has hit .299/.391/.500 with nine homers in 271 PAs. It’s unclear whether Voit will get a big league shot immediately with the Yankees, though they could arguably use some offensive help after losing superstar slugger Aaron Judge to the disabled list Friday.
The most proven major leaguer in this swap is Shreve, whom the Yankees deemed redundant after adding fellow lefty Zach Britton to an already loaded bullpen earlier this week. Shreve, 28, saw extensive action with the Yankees in each season from 2015-18 and combined for a 3.88 ERA/4.89 FIP with 10.42 K/9, 4.56 BB/9 and a 43.7 percent groundball rate over 173 2/3 innings. He has posted similar numbers through 38 frames this year, with a 4.26 ERA/4.98 FIP, 10.89 K/9, 4.26 BB/9 and a 46.7 percent grounder rate. The long ball has haunted Shreve this season, as he has allowed homers on 23.5 percent on fly balls, and has given up an unappealing .240/.356/.551 line to left-handed hitters. Nevertheless, the Cardinals seem to be banking on a turnaround from the out-of-options Shreve as they radically reconstruct their bullpen. The additions of Shreve and Gallegos are the latest moves to make over a relief unit that said goodbye to relievers Greg Holland, Sam Tuivailala and Tyler Lyons on Friday.
Archer would be a awesome addition to the Cardinals rotation. With injuries to most of the pitching staff Archer would be a good addition to keep us afloat. The Cardinals better put up a pretty good offer with the Dodgers and Yankees showing a lot of interest in Archer too.
Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch adds that the Cardinals “remain interested” in Archer, noting that the club attempted to deal for the 29-year-old just this past winter. Goold’s sources tell him that the Cards believe they can line up a “competitive offer”. It’s no surprise that St. Louis would be checking in on all available options to patch their injury-ravaged rotation; the club’s seen right-handers Michael Wacha and Carlos Martinez succumb to oblique injuries and can’t know what type of late-2018 contributions to expect from either at this point. Meanwhile, top prospect Alex Reyes, who was expected to play a big role in the club’s plans this year, suffered a season-ending lat injury at the tail end of May. Adam Wainwright continues to be injury-prone and can’t be counted on for any type of meaningful production. The club is currently placing its playoff hopes on the resurgent Miles Mikolas and a cast of rookies including Jack Flaherty, Luke Weaver and John Gant.
To be fair, it’s not clear whether Archer is truly worth the price of an “ace”. The right-hander has posted ERAs north of four in each of the past two seasons and currently sports a six-year high figure of 4.31. While it’s true that his FIP (3.62) suggests quite a bit of bad luck has been involved, the same can also be said of each of his previous three seasons- Archer has a reputation as a pitcher whose results consistently fail to keep up with his peripherals. Still, it’s easy to imagine him catching fire and putting together an impressive second-half run, a possibility which plenty of contenders would like to take a chance on.
2018 Contract Status: Signed thru 2019, 6 yrs/$25.5M (14-19) & 20-21 team option
The St. Louis Cardinals announced prior to tonight’s series opener with Chicago a series of roster moves, including a trade with Seattle that sent right-handed pitcher Sam Tuivailala to the Mariners in exchange for minor league right-handed pitcher Seth Elledge who is being assigned to Springfield (AA). Below is a listing of today’s moves:
· Acquired right-handed minor league pitcher Seth Elledge from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for righthanded pitcher Sam Tuivailala;
· Recalled right-handed pitcher Luke Weaver from Peoria (A);
· Recalled left-handed pitcher Tyler Webb from Memphis (AAA);
· Recalled right-handed pitcher Daniel Poncedeleon from Memphis (AAA);
· Purchased right-handed pitcher Dakota Hudson from Memphis (AAA);
· Designated left-handed pitcher Tyler Lyons for assignment;
· Designated right-handed pitcher Greg Holland for assignment;
· Placed left-handed pitcher Brett Cecil (right foot inflammation) on 10-day disabled list, retroactive to July 23.
Hudson, 23, the Cardinals supplemental 1st round draft choice (34th player overall) in 2016 out of Mississippi State University, will be making his Major League debut with his first appearance. Hudson was 13-3 with a 2.50 ERA at Memphis in 19 starts in an all-star season that also included the MLB Futures Game during All-Star Week.
Webb, 28, a waiver claim from San Diego in late June, will be making his first appearance with St. Louis, but has appeared in a combined 13 games (13.0 IP) in relief with the Yankees, Brewers and Padres over the past two seasons. Webb was a combined 1-1 with a 2.10 ERA in 25 games at triple-A this season between El Paso and Memphis, striking out 41 in 34.1 innings pitched while walking just 12. He appeared in six games at Memphis (2.19 ERA with 13 strikeouts in 12.1 IP).
Poncedeleon, who on Monday in Cincinnati became one of just five pitchers since 1961 to throw 7.0 or more nohit innings in their Major League debut, was 9-3 with a 2.15 ERA for Memphis in 18 games (17 starts).
Elledge, 22, recently rated as the 10th best prospect in the Mariners system by Baseball America, was 5-1 with a 1.17 ERA and 9 saves in 31 games for Modesto (A), striking out 54 in 38.1 innings while being named a California League All-Star.
Hudson has been assigned uniform no. 43 and Webb no. 30. Poncedeleon wears uniform no. 62.
Source: St. Louis Cardinals
This weekend the Cardinals will be redoing their bullpen and a possible trade? ! guess we will see. Here is the lowdown on Holland…..
Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tweets that Holland will be designated for assignment — not released. That may well be a moot point, as the DFA will merely give the Cardinals a week (it had been 10 days prior to the new version of the CBA) to either trade Holland or place him on outright or release waivers. Holland would be able to reject an outright assignment in favor of free agency anyhow, so if the Cards aren’t able to find a taker on the trade market — which would assuredly require them to eat the vast majority of Holland’s remaining $4.89MM salary — then it seems he’ll hit the open market regardless.
The Cardinals are expected to release right-hander Greg Holland today, reports Jon Morosi of MLB.com (Twitter links). His roster spot will go to pitching prospect Dakota Hudson, who is set to have his contract selected from Triple-A Memphis, per Morosi.
That report certainly meshes with some recent comments made by president of baseball operations on the Bernie Miklasz Show on ESPN 101, in which Mozeliak said to “expect changes” to the club’s bullpen in the near future (Twitter link). The Athletic’s Mark Saxon recently speculated that Holland would be cut loose and that Hudson would be brought up to the big league roster (Twitter link).
The Cardinals’ decision to sign Holland to a last-minute, one-year contract with a $14MM guarantee on Opening Day proved to be a catastrophic misstep for the club. Not only did St. Louis surrender a valuable selection in the 2018 draft to do so, but the Cardinals received nothing in the way of on-field value from the 2017 National League saves leader.
Holland missed all of Spring Training while waiting to find a deal he and agent Scott Boras dubbed suitable, and the Cardinals made the eyebrow-raising decision to bring him to the Majors after just two minor league appearances. Holland struggled immediately, walking four batters in his Cardinals debut on April 9. Those struggles were the first of many in 2018 for Holland, whose Cardinals tenure will come to a close with a 7.92 ERA, 22 strikeouts and 22 walks over the life of 25 innings.
As for his replacement on the roster, Hudson will come to the Cardinals having drawn considerable fanfare since being selected with the 34th overall pick in the 2016 draft. He ranked as the Cardinals’ No. 4 prospect on this week’s updated Top 30 rankings from Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com, and while he falls outside that duo’s Top 100 overall prospects, Hudson is still viewed as a potential mid-rotation arm. The 23-year-old has pitched to a 2.50 ERA with 7.0 K/9, 3.0 BB/9 and a hefty 57.7 percent ground-ball rate through 111 2/3 innings in Triple-A Memphis this season.
Though Hudson is being promoted to replace a reliever, it seems quite likely that the organization will deploy him as a starter. Saxon speculated before that John Gant and/or Austin Gomber could be moved to the bullpen, with Hudson stepping into a starting spot and giving the Cards a couple of months to evaluate his future. Callis and Mayo note that while Hudson has four average or better offerings, led by his fastball and his slider, he still doesn’t miss many bats. His fastball/slider combo is strong enough, though, that he could work in relief even if he doesn’t pan out as a starter, per their report.
Source: Steve Adams/MLBTradeRumors
I am happy to report that Ex-Cardinal Slugger Jack Clark new venture in San Francisco happens to be Pine Tar Grill that’s a Giants centric restaurant. This is not a media release but I do want to share an article the talks about the back story of Pine Tar Grill.
In 1965, Willie Mays had a .317 batting average, hit 52 home runs, won the National League MVP award, and made a 6-year-old San Rafael kid named Dave Martin fall in love with the San Francisco Giants.
“The first game I ever went to that year, I got to see Willie Mays play for the first time. I remember just watching him run across the field,“ Martin said. “The grass was so green. It looked perfect. Honestly, I was pretty much hooked after that.”
Martin is turning that childhood nostalgia into something tangible — a restaurant called Pine Tar Grill.
Martin is in the process of taking over the 4,000-square-foot space at 917 Folsom St., the former home of all-ages venue Codeword and its sister restaurant, DNA Pizza.
“I pretty much always wanted to have a place that has a theme that’s Giants memorabilia,” said the first-time restaurateur. “It’s a crazy dream, but it’s my dream.”
If the restaurant as a concept can be traced back to anything, Martin said, it would be his afternoons as a kid spent standing outside of the stadium long after the Giants finished playing. In those days, bats that were broken during the games were thrown in the garbage not far from the ballpark’s exits.
“Me and other kids, we’d wait until those bats were taken to the trash and we’d go get them,” Martin said with a laugh.
The collection grew to consist of dozens of bats over the years, all in various states of disrepair. Martin said he plans to use roughly 30 to 40 of the bats as a prominent component of the restaurant’s design. Even the name Pine
The collection grew to consist of dozens of bats over the years, all in various states of disrepair. Martin said he plans to use roughly 30 to 40 of the bats as a prominent component of the restaurant’s design. Even the name Pine Tar Grill is a reference to the sticky material players use on their bats to get a better grip.
The restaurant has a Type-47 liquor license, meaning it will also have a full bar. Aesthetically, the project is still coming together, but Martin said he plans to have 20 televisions scattered throughout the rooms. Martin added that the kitchen will serve “upscale comfort food,” though he has yet to hire a chef for the project.
Both Codeword and DNA Pizza were owned by the people behind DNA Lounge, a beloved San Francisco nightclub also in SoMa, and to keep the lounge open, they had to sacrifice the two struggling operations.
“We were feeling too spread thin,” co-owner Barry Synoground told The Chronicle last summer.
Though Martin’s sports identity is rooted in the past, he said he isn’t concerned with the tumultuous business history at 917 Folsom St. The restaurant and bar business in the Bay Area is hard for everyone, he said.
“Honestly, I should have my head examined for doing this,” he joked.
One of the more unique aspects of Pine Tar Grill is the fact that it was shaped with a little input from Giants legend Jack Clark, who Martin said is a close friend of his.
The restaurant, in its early form, was called the Pitcher’s Mound. Martin said when he told Clark about the concept and how he planned to use his collection of bats as a centerpiece of the design, Clark told him the idea was ridiculous.
“He said ‘You’re going to have used bats on the wall but call the place Pitcher’s Mound? That’s ridiculous,’” Martin said with a laugh. “Jack is really outspoken and tells the truth. He was right. So I had to tweak it.”
Eventually, the restaurant could pivot into a club of sorts for Giants fans across the city, Martin said.
“I imagine it as the kind of place where if it had opened years ago, it would have been the place where old-school sportswriters would come after the games,” he said. “That’s the environment I want. This place is from my heart. That’s all it is.”
Pine Tar Grill and Bar: 917 Folsom St.
Justin Phillips is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @JustMrPhillips
Thanks in large part to his defensive shortcomings, Cardinals first baseman Jose Martinez is seemingly shifting toward a part-time role. As a result, the Cardinals could trade the 29-year-old – perhaps for a left-handed reliever or lefty-hitting position player – Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes. If the Cardinals are going to deal Martinez anywhere, it’ll likely be to a team in the American League, where he’d be able to work as a designated hitter. But it doesn’t seem the Redbirds are going to trade Martinez for Orioles southpaw reliever Zach Britton, whom they’re not pursuing, according to Goold. Since debuting in earnest last year, Martinez has been a minus defender in the outfield and at first base. He has done his best to offset that with his bat, though, having slashed .303/.372/.497 with 27 home runs in 663 plate appearances.
Sticking with the Cardinals, it doesn’t appear they’re going to move out any pitchers prior to the deadline. Top starter Carlos Martinez has come up in trade speculation, though president of baseball operations John Mozeliak indicated to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com and other reporters on Thursday that the team won’t be subtracting from its staff. “For us, the one core we have is pitching,” Mozeliak said. “And to start trying to arbitrage that would have to be a very special-type deal, otherwise it would make no sense to us. None of that has presented itself to me. No one has called me with any great ideas that way. One of the responsibilities is us looking at potential trades, potential partners, but nothing that I’ve looked at would make sense in that regard. I don’t envision us moving pitching.”
Source: Connor Byrne
Yadier Molina as Cardinals Manager? I would go with that. The history of players that where managers with the Cardinals at this time is fourteen. These players as managers include Roger Bresnahan, Patsy Donovan, Jimmy Burke, Frankie Frisch, George Gore, Solly Hemus, Rogers Hornsby, Miller Huggins, Kid Nichols, Bob O’Farrell, Billy Southworth, Gabby Street, Patsy Tebeau, Harry Walker, and three of these players/manager where catchers. Is it possible that our beloved catcher Yadi Molina could be number fifteen? Here is a brief article from ESPN
Longtime Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina said he’d “welcome the opportunity” if he had a chance to be player-manager during his last contract year with St. Louis in 2020.
“For any player, that would be a dream to be considered for such a role,” Molina told ESPN’s Marly Rivera. “It would be a dream. I’m not shutting the door to anything. I am very open. Of course, maybe I would like to spend some time with my family first. But if such an opportunity comes up, obviously I would accept it.”
The 36-year-old Molina, considered one of the game’s best catchers, has spent his entire 15-year career with the Cardinals. He made his comments in Washington at Nationals Park, where he was preparing for his ninth All-Star Game.
“I love to be around baseball,” he said. “Right now I’m focused on being a player and helping my team win.”
The Cardinals fired Mike Matheny on Saturday after six-and-a-half seasons as manager, and named Mike Schildt to serve as interim manager. Molina knows that the organization is looking to him to be a stabilizing influence in the clubhouse.
Molina already holds several franchise records. He became the all-time Cardinals leader in games caught with 1,439 on April 8, 2016, and he has the franchise record for most postseason hits. He has won eight Gold Gloves.
“Of course a lot of the players in that clubhouse have respect for me and talk to me about everything,” he said. “So with my experience, I certainly try to help them, to make things easier for everyone. My main role is to help the team.
“And I love that role. And I love that my teammates feel comfortable coming to me.”
Molina had nothing but praise for Matheny, whom he called a very good leader.
“The fact that he lost his job, as a ballplayer I feel bad, because it’s my fault,” Molina said. “Managers don’t play. We the players play. But we understand that’s baseball. Ups and downs, and now I’m focused to work with my new manager to win this season.”
ST. LOUIS, Mo. – July 14, 2018 – The St. Louis Cardinals announced following today’s game that they have dismissed Manager Mike Matheny and named Bench Coach Mike Shildt as the team’s interim manager. The team also announced that Hitting Coach John Mabry and Assistant Hitting Coach Bill Mueller have been relieved of their duties.
“Mike Matheny has served the St. Louis Cardinals organization with tremendous dedication and pride and I am thankful for his service to the Cardinals over the past six and a half seasons,” stated Cardinals’ Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Bill DeWitt, Jr. “On behalf of the entire Cardinals organization, I would like to wish Mike the very best.”
Matheny, 47, was named the Cardinals 49th manager on November 14, 2011 and compiled a 591-473 won-loss mark, ranking 5th all-time amongst Cardinals managers in wins. He helped lead the team to the postseason in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, including a National League Championship in 2013.
“These decisions are never easy, but we felt that a change in leadership was necessary as the team prepares to enter into the second half of the season,” said President of Baseball Operations John Mozeliak. “I would like to thank Mike for his exceptional commitment and devotion to the Cardinals organization, including many fond memories of our years working together.”
Shildt, 49, has been a member of the Cardinals organization since 2004 and has served on the team’s Major League coaching staff the past two (2017-18) seasons. The North Carolina native managed for eight seasons in the Cardinals farm system where his clubs won league championships in 2010 and 2011 with Johnson City of the rookie Appalachian League and in 2012 with Springfield of the Texas League (AA). He most recently managed in 2016 with Memphis of the Pacific Coast League (AAA).
The team plans to hold a news conference tomorrow morning at 11:00 a.m. CDT with Cardinals’ Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Bill DeWitt Jr., and the team’s President of Baseball Operations John Mozeliak, to discuss tonight’s announcement and additional organizational staff changes.
Source: St. Louis Cardinals
I was told about this article that was written yesterday about my cousin Charlie James that had played with the Cardinals from 1960-64. Its a good read and I hope you all enjoy it!
The Woods Today
by John Fougere
July 12, 2018
As millions of baseball fans tune in to catch the upcoming Major League Baseball All-Star game, Charlie James will probably join them. But unlike the vast majority of fans across the country watching the best of this era’s players square off in the Midsummer Classic, the current member of the William Woods University Board of Trustees will have a unique perspective about baseball legends.
That’s because once upon a time, Charlie James lived the dream that untold numbers of American boys have wished for for generations. Not only did he achieve what a tiny percentage of anyone who ever picks up a bat and glove ever do – make the major leagues – but he got to do so for his beloved hometown team, the St. Louis Cardinals. And even more impressive, he had the opportunity to play alongside and against some of the most legendary names in baseball history.
Still more dazzling, he even excelled against a man considered by many to be the greatest pitcher in baseball history, and also got to play in a World Series.
As the old phrase goes, it’s a wonderful life, right? But ask Charlie about those remarkable memories and experiences from so many years ago, and he humbly smiles and says “It was a nice honor to have a chance to play for my hometown team.”
2018 is the 60th anniversary of two pretty important milestones in Charlie James’ life. In 1958 he married his wife Jo, with whom he raised two children, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. It is also the anniversary of the signing of his first professional baseball contract, with the St. Louis Cardinals, beginning an eight-year odyssey that would take him to the very pinnacle of the American pastime.
A visit to Charlie and Jo’s Fulton home is a fascinating walk down a baseball memory lane. In a comfortable family room adorned with mementos of his career, one can find Charlie’s 1964 St. Louis Cardinals World Championship ring; his number 23 jersey that he wore for the Redbirds; an old wooden bat that Charlie used with those ’64 Cardinals, complete with marks on the barrel where he came in contact with the rawhide; photos at the long-demolished Sportsman’s Park with legendary Cardinal names like Dizzy Dean and Harry Caray; a signed Cincinnati Reds jersey signed by former teammate Pete Rose, and much more.
So did a kid growing up in suburban St. Louis ever think he would realize the wildest baseball dreams anyone could dare to imagine?
“It was my dream,” he said, smiling at the memory of a boyhood in Webster Groves. “My dad took me to several Cardinals games at Sportsman’s Park when I was growing up, and I use to tell him that I wanted to be down there on the field with the players, and play in the big leagues. He told me ‘you can do it, as long as you work hard and play the game a lot.’ But he also told me to remember one thing, that I had to promise him that I would get my college degree, because baseball careers for even big leaguers do not last forever.”
So before the talented athlete could chase his dream of baseball stardom, college would come first, where Charlie’s athletic prowess turned heads in another sport. Accepting a football scholarship to the University of Missouri, James was skilled enough to set a Mizzou football record (that stood for 36 years) for pass receptions by a Tiger backfield player, catching 30 for 362 yards during his sophomore season of 1956. His play for the Mizzou baseball team in the spring, in the meantime, caught the attention of scouts for the Cardinals. As it turned out, the professional baseball dream would come quicker than expected.
“During my junior year at Mizzou, I was seriously injured while returning a punt. It was a painful thigh injury that had me in the hospital for over a week,” he said. “I worked my way back to the field, but I started thinking that, if I really wanted to play professional baseball, I better go do it before I really get hurt playing football. Even though I liked football, playing pro baseball was my dream which is why I went ahead and signed with the Cardinals.”
Signing with St. Louis and leaving Mizzou in January 1958, James was off to baseball’s minor leagues, which included stops at such outposts as Houston (before it was a big league city); Rochester, New York and Charleston, West Virginia. While many a big league dream has died for so many professional baseball players who are never able to make it out of the catacomb-like minor leagues, it took Charlie only two and half years to get the call to the show. On August 2, 1960, he was called up to the big club, his childhood team, the St. Louis Cardinals.
Suddenly, the boy from the St. Louis suburbs was sharing a locker room with Cardinal legends (and future Hall of Famers) Stan Musial, Bob Gibson and Red Schoendienst, who were now his teammates.
“Was I in awe? Sure!” said James. “It always takes awhile to get to know someone, and for them to get to know you, but most of those guys were easy to get along with. If you had questions, you could just go right up to them and ask. You know, you could always ask a guy like Stan Musial ‘what kind of pitcher is this guy we are facing tonight?’, or ‘what does that pitcher like to throw?’ Everybody would be real helpful.”
Charlie settled in with the Cardinals, and ended up playing for the hometown team for five seasons, from 1960 until 1964. His best season was 1963, when he blasted 10 home runs and hit a solid .268. But perhaps his most significant legacy with the Cardinals was his uncanny ability to hit one the greatest pitchers in baseball history, the legendary Sandy Koufax of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Charlie clouted three career home runs off the Hall of Fame southpaw, including a memorable grand slam that he hammered completely out of Sportsman’s Park during a 1962 game.
“That was big thrill,” he said with characteristic humbleness. “You couldn’t hit Koufax’s 100 mile-per-hour fastball, which had a tendency to rise at it approached the plate. But if his pitch started out at your knees, it would rise to the belt-high level by the time it got to you. So if you swung at one of those pitches, that was really the only way you could hit it, and I was fortunate to do it.”
Besides his success against the great Dodger lefty, the other top thrill from Charlie’s major league career came in 1964, when he was a member of the World Champion Cardinals. 54 years later, he proudly still sported his world championship ring as he recalled being part of the team that defeated the storied New York Yankees in the 1964 World Series. Which meant once again competing against some of baseball’s all-time, Hall of Fame greats.
“It was really exciting, even just taking batting practice at Yankee Stadium and mixing with all those guys like (Mickey) Mantle, (Roger) Maris, and the others,” he said. “I only got a few at-bats in that series, but hitting against (Hall of Famer) Whitey Ford, and playing at Yankee Stadium, was thrilling.”
Being a part of the 1964 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals turned out to be Charlie’s last hurrah with his hometown team, as he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds after the season ended. He played his last major league season with the Reds in 1965, where among his teammates were still two more baseball legends, Pete Rose and Frank Robinson. When the Reds asked him to begin the 1966 season back in the minor leagues, Charlie – whose family by then included two small children with Jo – decided it was time to retire.
His post-baseball life included earning two degrees in Electrical Engineering from Washington University back in St. Louis, and eventually becoming president of Central Electric Company, a career move that brought his family to the city that has been his home for nearly five decades – Fulton, Missouri. And led to his selection as a member of the William Woods Board of Trustees, which he accepted in 1990.
“At that point, I had been in Fulton for about 18 years, and had become very active in the community,” he said. “William Woods University has always been such a major contributor to our community here in Fulton, and when President Barnett and her predecessor President (John) Bartholomy asked me to serve on the board, I was honored to accept. It has been a great honor to be a part of the board, and William Woods is an outstanding institution.”
William Woods has been fortunate to have a trustee as prominent and dedicated as Charlie James, who has become an institution in his own right on the WWU Board of Trustees now for nearly three decades. He is one of the longest-serving members of the board, and has helped guide the university to significant growth and success during his tenure. His service to William Woods comes after decades of leadership at a prominent company he helped build, as well as in the community where he raised a family.
And every spring and summer, when the weather gets warm and thoughts turn to our National Pastime, the memories come flooding back. Back to once upon a time when Charlie James got to live a dream so very few of us ever get to do – to play alongside and excel against – some of the greatest men to ever put on a baseball uniform.
A few days ago my son Gabe asked me, “Did Molina get voted in the All Star Game?” I shook my head no and told him its Buster Posey. Well we are now happy he gets to appear again for the 2018 All Star Game.
The following article is written by Jennifer Langosch…
Despite missing a month due to injury, Yadier Molina built a first-half resume strong enough to earn his ninth career All-Star selection. Molina was named to the National League team on Monday as a replacement for San Francisco’s Buster Posey, who will not participate in next week’s Midsummer Classic due to a right hip injury. Molina will be one of three catchers on the NL team, joining Chicago’s Willson Contreras and Miami’s J.T. Realmuto.
This All-Star invite ties Molina with Bob Gibson and Albert Pujols, each of whom earned nine such selections as Cardinals. Only Joe Medwick (10), Red Schoendienst (10), Enos Slaughter (10), Ken Boyer (11), Ozzie Smith (14) and Stan Musial (24) had more. Since his first All-Star selection in 2009, Molina has been left off the NL roster only once.
At the age of 35, Molina is in the midst of his best offensive season since 2012, when he finished fourth in the NL Most Valuable Player vote. His .500 slugging percentage ranks second-best among NL catchers, and he’s tied for the league lead among catchers with 13 home runs. Molina ranks fourth at his position in both batting average (.279) and RBIs (38).
This marks the third consecutive season that the Cardinals have placed two players on the All-Star team, as starting pitcher Miles Mikolas learned on Sunday that he had been named a first-time All-Star. There’s a chance the Cardinals may add a third to the mix, too, as Matt Carpenter is one of five National League players vying for a roster spot as part of the 2018 Camping World MLB Final Vote.
Fans can cast votes for the final player on each league’s roster — on computers, tablets and smartphones — exclusively online, as well as via the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark mobile apps, until Wednesday at 3 p.m. CT.
On Tuesday, July 17, while watching the 2018 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, fans can submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet with the 2018 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote.
The 89th Midsummer Classic, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage.
For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.
Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.
Too Much Fuss over the 25th Man on the Roster ….Dexter Fowler
By Steve Dunford
I don’t know about you but I am beyond sick about hearing about all the drama surrounding an grossly overpaid outfielder that is hitting .173 a week before the all-star break.
Dexter Fowler has been the center of attention in the St. Louis and some of the national media outlets for comments that Cardinals President of Baseball Operations, John Mozelak made on KMOX and Cardinal Broadcaster Dan McLaughlin’s podcast, https://www.scoopswithdannymac.com/. Check out his website, There is some good stuff on there.
Dexter Fowler was called out on June 7th by Mark Saxon, the Cardinal beat writer of the upstart online magazine, The Athletic. Dex’s lack of hustle on a fly ball was called out by Saxon using the world “swag.” This resulted in his wife Allya going on a Twitter rampage. That afternoon I made a social media post that was short and sweet, “Dexter Fowler is Lazy.”
Here is where the blame goes to Mo. His timing of calling Fowler out, even well deserved, was horrible horrible timing. It is inhumane to do this on the day you will be bringing a child into the world. The bow tie clad executive had a terrible hot stove league of the winter of 2016-17. Between the cash he threw at Fowler and lefty reliever Brett Cecil was over nine figures.
In an 11-1 blowout win over the San Francisco Giants last night, Fowler took over in RF, to give Marcell Ozuna a few inning breather. Cecil pitched the ninth in a mop-up role after a great outing by Luke Weaver. Need I say more. Cecil has been pitching well of late. With Austin Gomber being optioned to Memphis, Cecil might have earned the role he was signed for.
Over the few days of Jerry Springer like drama, Cubs manager Joe Maddon goes to the media stirring it up. I like Maddon, and the Cubs will always be the Cubs, but they are fun to watch from a baseball fan’s standpoint. Maddon gets in Cardinal Manager Mike Matheny’s head. The Cubs’ skipper is a cool 70 something year-old man. For what it is worth, the Cardinals skipped over Maddon to hire MM. If Mo and owner Bill Dewitt would have hired Maddon or Indians skipper Terry Francona,
The national media has trashed the Cardinals for mistreating Fowler. I have not read one article that said he was hitting .173. No one on the east coast has witnessed what we as Cardinal fans have witnessed this year.
I listened to the shrill voiced Michelle Smallom, Bernie Miklasz’ sidekick on 101 ESPN saying the negative press the Cardinals were getting nationally was embarrassment. Personally, I don’t care what ESPN thinks or any other national media outet thinks. They think the Yankees, Red Sox, and Cubs matter. The premises it that the Cardinals are the most successful in the free agent market, it is dump
Saxon interviewed Dex before last night’s game. Paraphrasing Saxon he asked the underachieving OF about playing time and Mo and being called out for lack of effort.
First of all Fowler said he has to play. No he doesn’t. Harrison Bader needs to play. The 23 year old rookie is a better defender. Going to my next point Bader plays hard, and wants to win.
Fowler said it was “bullshit” that he is called out for lack of hustle. All I can say your laziness is what is BS. It was an issue in Colorado. I remember a comment by OF Tommy Pham last season. He was talking about veterans that show up late and leave early. In an interview this week with Jen Langosh, she confirmed this about Fowler.
The latest drama was that Fowler blocked texts from Manager Mike Matheny. He was upset that he was dropped from the leadoff spot, barely having a triple digit batting average in favor of Matt Carpenter.
Matheny sends out a group text to his players with the lineup and an inspirational message. Since he decided to block the skipper, he did not find out until he got to ball park.
Cry me a river Dex. In the real world you walk into a job and the boss will have a change of plans. Yes you were signed to lead off and play CF, but the fact of the matter is, you are terrible in right let alone center, and I would rather see Carlos Martinez or Luke Weaver come to the plate as a pinch hitter in a tight game than you,
With Paul DeJong being activated from the disabled list, with the Cardinals going with a five man bench now with Yario Munoz kept on the roster instead of Gomber. Munoz will see some time in the OF, as he can be another Jose Oquendo. With defensive challenged Jose Martinez going to see some time in the outfield as well, Fowler slides way down the depth chart. He will collect nearly $50 million over the next three years. If he hangs around, it will be as a fifth or sixth outfielder.
I don’t see any plausible solution to this. An ugly divorce between the Cardinals and Fowler is coming. His wifey might go to social media trashing the Cardinals and St. Louis in general, but she is not complaining the $83mil worth of pay stubs that she will collect saying St. Louis National League Baseball club Inc.
When Tyler O’ Neill comes off the DL, something will have to be done with Fowler. It spoke volumes the day he was called up that he immediately hit in the three hole. O’ Neill can provide some much needed pop for the Cardinals. Dexter Fowler just needs to go away.
If the conversation hasn’t already taken place between Mo and owner Bill Dewitt, I am sure DeWitt has told him how far $50 million could go into the construction of the next phase of Ball Park Village.
In my 43 years of being a Cardinal fan, Garry Templeton and Tino Martinez are my least favorite Cardinals. You can add Fowler to the list. All I know is the Cardinals are 3-1 since Mo’s tirade. Lets put Dex and his drama in the rearview mirror and get back in the race.
So what’s really going on with the St. Louis Cardinals? Has this very mediocre team that goes through swoons and some highs while still making defensive mistakes and hitting droughts, will be ale to crawl to second place? I tend to believe that this team needs to make some very well needed upgrades before the trade deadline and a very honest look at their upper to lower management. Things need to desperately change with this organization in order to compete with the Brewers.
Here is a article from Jeff Todd at MLB Trade Rumors that gives more insight….
Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak did not sugarcoat the challenges facing his team in his latest appearance on the podcast of Dan McLaughlin of FOX Sports Midwest (audio link). The club must find a way to begin winning more consistently, said Mozeliak, though it remains unclear just what can be done to spur such a change.
The sense of frustration surrounding the Cards, who are sitting just above .500 on the year, seemingly extends from the fanbase to the front office. Mozeliak acknowledges that this club “hasn’t been the easiest team to sort of think through, in terms of how to get better, or what to do, or what changes need to be made.”
Mozeliak identified “outfield inconsistencies” and bullpen struggles as the two key concerns. Spurring the needed change won’t be easy. Mozeliak says the club needs to be open-minded and creative in all regards.
Bostering the relief unit can be accomplished via trade, perhaps. Internal options for deepening the pitching staff are relatively sparse, Mozeliak suggested. He bemoaned the loss of Alex Reyes while noting that Dakota Hudson’s success at Triple-A does not necessarily portend an immediate impact in the majors.
Addressing the outfield concerns is a trickier business. Mozeliak wouldn’t rule out moving Jose Martinez to the outfield, saying that the slugger — who is as unpolished in the field as he has been excellent at the plate — is “putting a lot of stress on everyone” with his play at first base. But that seems like a somewhat dubious option when outfield defense is one of the areas of concern. Presumably, the club will look first at ways to get its existing options to play at the necessary levels.
Mozeliak addressed veteran Dexter Fowler, in particular. The top St. Louis baseball executive offered some rather surprisingly pointed words on the respected and highly-paid Fowler:
“I’ve also heard a lot of people come up to me and question his effort and his energy level. Those are things that I can’t defend. What I can defend is trying to create opportunities for him, but not if it’s at the expense of someone that’s out there hustling and playing hard.”
To an extent, Mozeliak seemingly tried to soften the meaning of his statement in ensuing comments to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He and Fowler have spoken since, says Mozeliak, who hinted that he was not trying to single out Fowler. “I would not make too much of this and really what I was trying to say is: I hear what our fan base is saying,” Mozeliak said.
Ultimately, mid-season trades can only do so much to boost the performance. And the Cards brass will need to take its cues from the existing roster. With less than a month’s worth of games left to go before the trade deadline, Mozeliak says that “everybody just needs to take a hard look in the mirror and decide what they want that next chapter to look like.”
Today is MLB International Signing Day and the Cardinals have been active on the Cuban market in recent years and are once again tapping into talent from the island to bolster their Minor League system.
According to industry sources, the club has agreed to a $300,000 deal with third baseman Malcom Nunez of Cuba, highlighting the club’s international signing class.
The Cardinals, like the A’s, Astros, Braves, Nationals, Padres, Reds and White Sox, are in the maximum penalty, and cannot sign any individual player for more than $300,000 during the current period.
The club did not confirm the deal.
Standing at 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds, Nunez, 17, has a strong body and is physically mature. He has exhibited lots of strength in his swing and displays projectable hitting ability and power. Overall, he’s known for his plate discipline and offensive instincts. On defense, Nunez has an above-average arm.
Nunez, who became eligible to sign during the 2017-2018 period, starred on Cuba’s 15U teams and could begin play in the Dominican Summer League not long after he signs.
The list of Cuban players to sign with the Cardinals during the last few years includes infielder Aledmys Diaz, who signed in 2014, outfielder Randy Arozarena, center fielder Jonatan Machado and right-handed pitcher Johan Oviedo, who all signed in 2016. Right-handed pitcher Hector Mendoza and outfielder Jose Adolis Garcia signed with the club last year.
According to the rules established by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, clubs that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round B of the MLB Draft received a pool of $6,025,400, while clubs like the Cardinals that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round A of the Draft received a pool of $5,504,500. However, the Cardinals lost $500,000 for their signing of Greg Holland to drop their available pool to $5,004,500.
The club is allowed to trade as much of their international pool money as it would like but can only acquire 75 percent of a team’s initial pool amount. Additionally, signing bonuses of $10,000 or less do not count toward the club’s bonus pool, and foreign professional players who are at least 25 and have played in a foreign league for at least six seasons are also exempt.
Jesse Sanchez, who has been writing for MLB.com since 2001, is a national reporter based in Phoenix. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB and Facebook.
The Cardinals have claimed lefty Tyler Webb off waivers from the Padres. The San Diego organization, which announced the move, had designated Webb for assignment recently.
A tenth-round pick in the 2013 draft, Webb moved quickly to the upper reaches of the Yankees system and has always produced quality K/BB numbers. But the 27-year-old has received limited opportunities in the majors. He has just 13 total MLB innings on his ledger, with those coming with three different teams over the past two seasons.
This season, Webb has thrived at Triple-A. Through 22 innings, he has allowed just five earned runs while recording 28 strikeouts against eight walks. But in his time in the bigs, he has shown only a low-nineties fastball and swinging-strike rate of just over eight percent.
Source: Jeff Todd/MLB Trade Rumors
THE CARDINAL WAY HAS BEEN ABANDONED
By Steve Dunford
First of all there are times in your life when you remember where you are at when something happens. I was out in the boat fishing and I turn on the radio and there is no Cardinal game. I was cleaning fish when I heard the news. I immediately broke down.
I went in the house and I watched a statement by then Cubs Catcher Joe Giradi, who was broken. He said “There has been a tragedy in involving the St. Louis Cardinals. There will be no game today.”
The 33 year old ace of the staff passed of a heart attack. There were two funerals in Busch Stadium in a week. The first was for legendary broadcaster, Jack Buck. It was the saddest week of the franchise.
I felt it was necessary to memorialize him on this day.
I will write my bio one day. I am 48 years old, and I started listening to Cardinal games since I have been five. Last night’s 11-3 loss to the Brewers is a microcosm of the direction of this team.
First of all shut down Carlos Martinez. It is obvious he is hurt. The defense let John Gant down. On a positive note, Brett Cecil is improving. It was so bad a utility infielder; Greg Garcia had to finish it off.
Martinez is one of my favorite Cardinals. I was in a conversation one time defending him from a fan that was talking about his immaturity. I said that I do not care that his purple. In his next start, guess what color his hair was.
When he went on the DL he had a 1.62 ERA. Since he has come back his ERA is 8.10. Something is wrong. Something is wrong all the pitchers are getting strained obliques and lats, starting with Adam Wainwright.
I would like to set down and read “The Cardinal Way” written by long time Cardinal instructor George Kissel. I know it is about playing good fundamental defense, play hard-nosed, as well as how to conduct yourself off the field.
This team has been terrible defensively, leads the National League in errors, and led the league in losing runners on the base paths.
What we are seeing is not Cardinal Baseball. I have heard a couple of interviews with Jennifer Langosh, beat writer covering the Cardinals for mlb.com. She has been on maternity leave. Her first series in the press box was covering the Cub series. She said that that was “exactly the same team that was on the field in 2017,”
I stream 101 ESPN every morning. Bernie said he was going to throw some “stink bombs” out there this morning, and he did. Michelle Smallmon who used to work at ESPN said the Cardinals bad play was the lead story last night on Sportscenter. I always say that ESPN is the Yankees and Red Sox network. She said the Cardinals are never the lead story. She called it “embarrassing.” The worst wild pitch by Cmart and Marcell Ozuna’s misjudged Spiderman act was the top two highlights.
Last night in his post-game interview with manager Mike Matheny, It was the same ol ‘ same ol”…..Our guys are grinding…..we are a good club…etc.
It is the same song and dance that we have heard since 2016 from Matheny. Nothing changes though.
If the Brewers take three out of four, I see a press conference called. Mo went out and brought in Mike Maddux and Willie McGee and brought back Jose Oquendo, This put Mike Matheny and hitting coach Jon Mabry on notice.
If this happens I would like to see Jose Oquendo as manager. In reality, it will be Mike Schildt. Stubby Clapp could be a dark hose.
Let’s hope they can turn it around and have some positive things to say. If the current trend continues, we will talk about being sellers next time.
Tsunami Waves Foundation
100 S. 4
Street Saint Louis, MO 63102
Tsunami Waves Proudly Presents
Carlos Martinez 4th Annual Celebrity Bowl
Thursday June 28th, 2018
6PM – 10PM
Bowlero in Saint Peters
8070 Veteran’s Memorial Pkwy
Saint Peters, MO 63376
ST. LOUIS, MO – St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Carlos Martinez is excited to announce his 4th Annual Charity
Bowling Fundraiser to be held at Bowlero on Thursday June 28th from 6PM to 10PM. Carlos is thrilled to be
hosting this Fan Appreciation/Charity Fundraiser for the 4th time.
Proceeds from past events have greatly benefited numerous underprivileged children in the St. Louis Area
and the Dominican Republic. We helped over 1500 children and over 3000 families receive much needed
medical assistance. Over 1500 children have received backpacks and school supplies. We have donated over
$8000 dollars in school tuition. And over 5000 gloves and baseball equipment has been donated to Carlos’
hometown of Puerto Plata. But our proudest accomplishment has been saving the life of a sweet young lady,
Camille Fernandez. We would not have been able to do that without the help from so many donors like you.
Our hope is that with the support of Cardinal Nation we can continue to help to inspire and empower
children to achieve their fullest potential.
CELEBRITY BOWLING EVENT AT BOWLERO IN SAINT PETERS – Fans purchasing Bowling Tickets for the event
will have the experience of bowling with Carlos Martinez and other Cardinal Celebrities, along with some
surprise guest this year. The evening will also include a silent auction and various raffle drawings throughout
the event for all in attendance. Teams, individuals, Corporate groups, and spectators alike are all welcome
and encouraged to purchase tickets in advance due to the intimate nature of the event tickets sell out fast.
By participating in this event, you can greatly assist the Foundation in its efforts to fulfill our worthy mission.
Visit the Foundation’s website http://www.tsunamiwavesfoundation.org to learn more about where Carlos came
from and for a better understanding why he has such a passion to pay it forward.
Pricing information Below!
Tsunami Waves Foundation
100 S. 4
Street Saint Louis, MO 63102
2018 Ticket Prices
Individual non-bowler – $60
Individual bowler – $130
MLB Roster – $500
Includes the following:
Bowling team (4 bowlers)
4 Tsunami Waves t-shirts
8 Food & Drink tickets
All-Star Sponsor – $1,000
Includes the following:
One bowling team (4 bowlers)
On-site signage including media wall
4 autographed pictures
4 event t-shirts
8 Food & Drink tickets
VIP PASS – $300
Includes the following:
Carlos Martinez and teammates meet and greet
Dinner & Drinks
Goodie bag that includes 2018 Tsunami Waves t-shirts
All Bowling tickets include 2 Food & 2 Drink tickets
All GA include 2 Drink tickets
Every admission purchase receives a 2018 Tsunami Waves Shirt
Tsunami Waves Foundation
100 S. 4
Street Saint Louis, MO 63102
2018 Sponsorship Packages
All packages are open to possible suggestions/changes/add ons
League Champion Sponsor – $8,000
Includes the following:
4 VIP Bowling teams (16 bowlers)
8 additional General Admission tickets
8 VIP Passes reception with Cardinal Celebrities
On-site signage including media wall
Opportunity to integrate corporate products at event and on all social media
24 autographed pictures
24 autographed ball
32 Tsunami Waves t-shirts
Division Champion Sponsor – $5,000
Includes the following:
2 VIP Bowling teams (8 bowlers)
8 additional n General Admission tickets
4 VIP Passes reception with Cardinal Celebrities
On-site signage including media wall
Opportunity to integrate corporate products at event
12 autographed pictures
12 autographed balls
20 Tsunami Waves t-shirts
Wild Card Sponsor – $2,500
Includes the following:
3 bowling teams (12 bowlers)
4 additional General Admission tickets
On-site signage including media wall
Opportunity to integrate corporate products at event
16 autographed pictures
16 Tsunami Waves t-shirts
32 Food & Drink tickets
The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have agreed to terms with 24 players from last week’s amateur draft and one non-drafted free-agent. Today’s announcement brings the total number of 2018 draftees signed and/or agreed to terms to 28 players, including nine of the team’s top 10 selections.
In addition to the players listed below in BOLD, the Cardinals reached agreement today with non-drafted free-agent right-handed pitcher Tommy Parsons (Adrian College, MI) who is the active career wins leader (40) among all NCAA Divisions, including a 23-game win streak.
2018 ST. LOUIS CARDINALS FIRST-YEAR PLAYER DRAFT – SIGNED/AGREED TO TERMS AS OF JUNE 14
Rd., Player (overall pick) Pos. B-T Ht Wt. School Hometown
1. Nolan Gorman (19) 3B L-R 6-1 210 Sandra Day O’Connor (Ariz.) High School Phoenix, Ariz.
CBA. Griffin Roberts (43) RHP R-R 6-3 205 Wake Forest University Midlothian, Va.
Cmp2. Luken Baker (75) 1B R-R 6-4 225 Texas Christian University Spring, Texas
3. Mateo Gil (95) SS R-R 6-2 190 Timber Creek (Texas) High School Keller, Texas
5. Nick Dunn (153) 2B L-R 5-10 175 University of Maryland Sunbury, Pa.
6. Edgar Gonzalez (183) RHP R-R 6-1 200 Fresno State University Newark, Calif.
7. Brendan Donovan (213) 3B L-R 6-1 195 University of South Alabama Enterprise, Ala.
8. Lars Nootbaar (243) LF L-R 6-3 210 University of Southern California El Segundo, Calif.
9. Matt Duce (273) C L-R 5-11 190 Dallas Baptist University Sierra Vista, Ariz.
10. Kevin Woodall, Jr. (303) 1B R-R 6-6 240 Coastal Carolina University Georgetown, S.C.
11. Chris Holba (333) RHP R-R 6-3 210 East Carolina University O’Fallon, Ill.
12. Francisco Justo (363) RHP R-R 6-4 205 Monroe College (N.Y.) Bronx, N.Y.
16. Samuel “Evan” Sisk (483) LHP L-L 6-2 209 College of Charleston Chester, S.C.
17. Kyle Leahy (513) RHP S-R 6-5 200 Colorado Mesa University Boulder, Colo.
18. Cole Aker (543) RHP R-R 6-2 205 University of Tampa Kernersville, N.C.
19. Josh Shaw (573) 2B R-R 6-1 195 St. John’s University Wayne, N.J.
22. Kevin Vargas (663) SS R-R 6-1 175 International Baseball Academy Ceiba, Puerto Rico
23. Michael Baird (693) RHP R-R 6-5 210 Southern Illinois University-Carbondale Parker, Colo.
24. Eli Kraus (723) LHP L-L 6-1 190 Kent State University Medina, Ohio
25. Troy Montemayor (753) RHP R-R 6-1 160 Baylor University San Antonio, Texas
26. Connor Coward (783) RHP R-R 6-0 200 Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech) Pittsburgh, Pa.
27. Perry DellaValle (813) RHP R-R 6-0 195 Seton Hill (Pa.) University North Royalton, Ohio
28. Justin Toerner (843) CF L-L 5-10 165 California State University-Northridge Temecula, Calif.
31. Ty Cohen (933) RHP R-R 6-1 195 Florida Institute of Technology (Florida Tech) Woodstock, Ga.
32. Brandon Purcell (963) C R-R 6-1 205 Georgia College and State University Glennville, Ga.
33. Chris Rivera (993) RHP R-R 5-9 175 Long Beach State University Watsonville, Calif.
37. Christian Caudle (1,113) C R-R 6-4 230 Texas A&M University-Kingsville Klein, Texas
40. Andrew Warner (1,203) RF R-R 6-2 225 Columbia (Mo.) College Lee’s Summit, Mo.
NDFA Tommy Parsons RHP R-R 6-5 185 Adrian (Mich.) College New Albany, Ohio
Source: St. Louis Cardinals
I am looking for a few writers to keep my blog going. My health is up and down due to the cancer and surgeries I have been through. If your a fan of the St.Louis Cardinals past and present and like to write about it contact me. at email@example.com All of your work will be your property. Thanks
Keith Hernandez revolutionized the role of first baseman. During his illustrious career with the World Series-winning St. Louis Cardinals and New York Mets, he was a perennial fan favorite, earning eleven consecutive Gold Gloves, a National League co-MVP Award, and a batting title. But it was his unique blend of intelligence, humor, and talent–not to mention his unflappable leadership, playful antics, and competitive temperament–that transcended the sport and propelled him to a level of renown that few other athletes have achieved, including his memorable appearances on the television show Seinfeld.
Now, with a striking mix of candor and self-reflection, Hernandez takes us along on his journey to baseball immortality. There are the hellacious bus rides and south-of-the-border escapades of his minor league years. His major league benchings, unending plate adjustments, and role in one of the most exciting batting races in history against Pete Rose. Indeed, from the Little League fields of Northern California to the dusty proving grounds of triple-A ball to the grand stages of Busch Stadium and beyond, I’m Keith Hernandez reveals as much about America’s favorite pastime as it does about the man himself.
What emerges is an honest and compelling assessment of the game’s past, present, and future–a memoir that showcases one of baseball’s most unique and experienced minds at his very best.
Praise for I’m Keith Hernandez
“Meeting Keith when I was 13 remains one of the greatest moments of my life. After reading this book which so accurately describes the grit, dedication, and perseverance it takes to become one of the Baseball’s greats, my appreciation for Keith–as a player, as a colleague, and as a friend–has reached new heights. It hits home, as do his keen insights into the game’s past, present, and future. If you love baseball, you MUST read this book.”―Alex Rodriguez
“As a longtime baseball fan, I appreciated learning about the evolution of one of my favorite ball players–Keith Hernandez. Even when he is writing about his slumps, his book is a hit. I recommend it.”―Gay Talese, author of High Notes and A Silent Season of a Hero
“‘Don’t think,’ said Crash Davis to Nuke LaLoosh in Bull Durham. ‘You can only hurt the ball club.’ No one ever said that to Keith Hernandez, the thinking person’s ballplayer. ‘You’re gonna have to learn your clichés,’ Crash advised Nuke. ‘They’re your friends.’ This, too, is a rule that, fortunately, Hernandez ignores in this romp through his life before, during and after baseball. Except there is no life after baseball.”―George F. Will
“I have known Keith my entire adult life and this revealing and honest autobiography made me smile and weep. Everyone has their own ‘bruises’ and Keith lets us in on what it takes to survive the troughs and tough times to make himself into the MVP he was and fine man he is today. Incredible perseverance of the human spirit with the help of his family, Keith will always be the greatest ballplayer I ever played with. I’m proud to call him my friend.”―Ron Darling
The Cardinals will place setup man Dominic Leone on the 10-day disabled list with what the team is calling a nerve issue in his right biceps, per Joe Trezza of MLB.com (Twitter links). The team didn’t have enough time following today’s diagnosis to call up a replacement for him, however, so a formal move won’t be made until tomorrow. The St. Louis ’pen already had nine relievers in tow, so the pitching staff won’t be especially short handed even if Leone is unavailable.
As Stu Durando of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch explains, Leone was called upon for a relief appearance last night but felt something unnatural in his biceps while throwing his warmup pitches. After immediately calling for a trainer, he exited without throwing a pitch. “It was something I hadn’t felt before and I was concerned,” said Leone. “I didn’t want to put a bad product on the field. I didn’t want to mess with it and potentially hurt myself worse or be ineffective.” It’s not yet clear how long Leone will be out of action at this time, though the Cards figure to have further updates before the weekend is up.
Here’s more out of St. Louis…
While many Cards fans were skeptical of the team’s two-year, $15.5MM deal with righty Miles Mikolas this offseason, but the 29-year-old has gone a long way toward proving his doubters wrong with a 2.70 ERA and a 31-to-2 K/BB ratio through his first 40 innings back in the Majors. Mikolas chatted with the Post-Dispatch’s Derrick Goold about the Cardinals’ offseason pursuit of him, revealing that the division-rival Cubs were also in pursuit of his services before they “cooled of” and eventually struck up a deal with Tyler Chatwood. “I guess they didn’t want me that bad,” said Mikolas of the Cubs. “I guess they thought it would be more fun facing me than having me on their staff. They figured they’d take their chances.”
Adam Wainwright tells reporters that he’s lined up to make a rehab start with the Cardinals’ Double-A affiliate on Monday (Twitter link via Trezza). The veteran has been out since April 22 with inflammation in his right elbow but could seemingly return to the club in the near future if all goes well in Springfield. The 36-year-old posted a 3.45 ERA in 15 2/3 innings to open the season but also turned in an ugly 12-to-8 K/BB ratio and hit a pair of batters in that time, demonstrating questionable control. That said, with both Wainwright and top prospect Alex Reyes nearing returns from the disabled list, the Cardinals are on the verge of adding some significant depth to the pitching staff.
MLB Trade Rumors
A pregame ceremony that welcomes home the 2018 St. Louis Cardinals, honors the club’s Hall of Famers and commemorates the great tradition of Opening Day in St. Louis will punctuate a day of activities celebrating the annual return of baseball to St. Louis on Thursday, April 5. The Cardinals will open the 2018 home slate against the Arizona Diamondbacks at 6:15 p.m. CT. Following is a schedule of official activities and information to help fans enjoy the unofficial holiday that is #OpeningDaySTL:
12:00 – 3:15 p.m. Opening Day Pep Rally at Ballpark Village: Join Fredbird, Team Fredbird and DJ Todd Thomas at the Ballpark Village parking lot for the Cardinals Opening Day Pep Rally. This event is free for all fans to attend and will proceed rain or shine. Danny Cox, Kyle McClellan and the FOX Sports Midwest announcers will stop by with plenty of Cardinals prizes and even some Opening Day tickets to give away. Food and drinks will be available for purchase as well.
3:00 p.m. Gates Open
2018 Cardinals Magnet Schedule: All ticketed-fans, ages 21 and older, will receive a magnet featuring the 2018 Cardinals schedule, compliments of Budweiser.
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Cardinals Batting Practice (subject to change)
4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Diamondbacks Batting Practice (subject to change)
5:30 p.m. Pregame ceremonies begin with an appearance by the famed Budweiser Clydesdales
Introduction of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson and St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger
Introduction of Fredbird and Team Fredbird
5:35 p.m. Hall of Famers will be introduced via a Ford Motorcade around the warning track. Hall of Famers will be riding in 2018 Ford Mustang convertibles.
Introduction of 2017 Cardinals Hall of Fame Induction Class
Cardinals Opening Day Video
5:50 p.m. Introduction of Cardinals principal owner and CEO, Bill DeWitt Jr.
Introduction of the 2018 St. Louis Cardinals via Ford Motorcade. The players will ride in 2018 Ford F-150 Raptors.
Introduction of the Arizona Diamondbacks
Color Guard and American Flag in center field, courtesy of the service men and women of Scott Air Force Base and Fort Leonard Wood, respectively.
6:05 p.m. National Anthem performed by Colleen Schoendienst, daughter of Hall of Famer Red Schoendienst
6:07 p.m. KC-135 Flyover (weather permitting)
6:09 p.m. Ceremonial First Pitch by Bob Gibson to Tim McCarver in recognition of Bob Gibson’s historic 1968 season.
6:15 p.m. First Pitch
Watching on TV
Fans can watch the pregame ceremonies in High Definition on FOX Sports Midwest beginning at 5:30 p.m. Live pregame coverage will start at 4:00 p.m. The game will also be broadcast nationally outside of the Cardinals home television territory on MLB Network.
Fans can tune into KMOX (1120 AM) or one of the 150 stations in the Cardinals Radio Network to hear Mike Shannon and John Rooney call the game. The Ameren Total Access Show starts at 4:40 p.m.
Online or On The Go
Fans may also follow the game for free on cardinals.com using the Gameday application or via the team’s Twitter account (@Cardinals). Fans can keep tabs on the score from their mobile device using MLB’s mobile app, At Bat 18.
The Cardinals Home Opener, including Opening Day Ceremonies, will be streamed live on the FOX Sports GO app and at FOXSportsGo.com (available in Cardinals territory).
Getting To The Game
Per MoDOT, motorists should be aware of the following on-going road closures:
· I-44, St. Louis City, two lanes closed westbound from Arsenal to Shrewsbury until December.
· I-64, St. Louis City, one lane closed eastbound across the Poplar Street Bridge into Illinois until December.
· I-64, St. Louis City, one lane closed westbound across the Poplar Street Bridge through December.
As usual, Clark Street will be closed to vehicular traffic in between the stadium and Ballpark Village.
Fans coming to the game will notice some construction near the ballpark with the work underway to build the second phase of Ballpark Village. While some areas are closed off to vehicular traffic, pedestrian access remains open to Ballpark Village as well as Clark Street. Fans are encouraged to allow extra time and pay attention to signs as they make their way to the ballpark.
MetroLink is a convenient alternative to driving. To avoid the traffic congestion and the cost of parking on game days, fans can use one of 21 free Park-Ride lots along the MetroLink line and take the train to Stadium Station, right across the street from the ballpark. MetroLink will have additional security and personnel located throughout the light rail system to assist passengers on Thursday. MetroLink will also monitor platforms for crowds and will add extra trains to service as need. Visit MetroStLouis.org or download the Metro On The Go app for schedules and Park-Ride lots nearest you.
There are also plenty of buses in Missouri and Illinois that will get fans to Busch Stadium including the Redbird Express that departs from the Water Tower at St. Clair Square in Fairview Heights, Illinois. On Opening Day, the first Redbird Express bus will leave at 1:15 p.m. and the last bus will leave at 5:35 p.m. MetroBus is another great option for getting downtown. Fans can catch the #40 Broadway or #99 Downtown Trolley, which both have stops near Busch Stadium.
Updated Prohibited Items Policy
· Fans can visit cardinals.com/security for the complete inspection policy & prohibited items list.
· New: Fans may bring empty cups, empty mugs and empty plastic bottles.
· New: Fans may bring ice packs.
· Not Permitted: Backpacks, alcohol, thermoses, hard-sided coolers, aluminum or glass cans/bottles, commercial camera equipment
Busch Stadium Re-Entry
· New: Exit stamps will be available for guests who need to exit the stadium but plan to return. The stamps will be located at Gate 1 (southeast corner of stadium) and Gate 4 (northwest corner of stadium).
Ballpark Improvements for 2018
A number of physical improvements have been made within Busch Stadium to improve the fan experience:
· Budweiser Terrace: A redesign and renovation of the upper right field seating area and adjacent concourse on Level 4. The 20,000 square foot multilevel area includes two full-service bars, standing areas and lounge seating within the bowl of the stadium, cozy cabana seating with urban garden accents on the concourse, open air BBQ grill and a newly constructed covered performance stage. Fans do not need a special ticket to access the Budweiser Terrace and standing/lounge areas within the seating bowl are all available on a first-come, first-served basis. The Budweiser Terrace will serve as the main activation area for Cardinals Theme Ticket events and live pregame performances.
· 1764 Craft Pub: Located behind Section 141, the new 1764 Craft Pub features a variety of local and national beer. With over 28 varietals of beer and 40 taps, guests will find strong representations of local crafts among classic and influential breweries.
· Self-Ordering Concession Kiosks: Located at concession stands outside Section 135 (Double Play Tap ‘n Grill) & 162 (Ballpark Favorites), our new self-ordering platform will allow guests to view menus with photos, make selections, customize their order and process payment directly at the terminal. The secure payment platform ensures guests have full control over their payment and even have the ability to process digital payments such as Apple Pay and Google Pay.
· Terrace Market: A third Schnucks Grab ‘N Go Market has been added on the Terrace level behind Section 450. The self-serve, pay at the register store gives fans the option to purchase a variety of soda, beer, water, dry snacks, novelty ice cream, and fresh sandwiches, salads and wraps in a quick and efficient manner.
· AT&T Coverage: AT&T has completed upgrades to their existing Distributed Antenna System (DAS) to improve throughput and serve more users. More than 300 antennas hidden throughout Busch Stadium helps manage heavy wireless traffic so fans can enjoy a faster, more reliable connection.
Delaware North Sportservice, the club’s concessionaire for more than 50 years, is preparing to welcome fans back to Busch Stadium. Delaware North Executive Chef Larry Johnson and his culinary team have developed a few new menu items for the 2018 season, including:
· Gioia’s Hot Salami Sandwich: St. Louis Hill classic since 1918! A James Beard Award winning sandwich featuring Gioia’s hot salami, Italian bread, pepper jack cheese, diced onions, sliced pepperoncini’s and deli mustard. Served with house blend chips. Served at: Concourse Stand behind Section 151 for $14.25.
· Coca-Cola Cantina Street Tacos: Three tacos with Coca-Cola marinated house smoked pork, Coca-Cola infused BBQ sauce, fresh pico de gallo, toasted onions, lime wedge. Served at: Coke Cantina at Gate 1 for $9.
· Grilled Chicken Bats: Smoked chicken legs with choice of BBQ, Buffalo or Hot Honey sauces. Served with house blend chips and grilled jalapeño. Served at: Terrace Grill at Budweiser Terrace for $7.
· Sausage Bites: Bacon Onion Cheddar, Whiskey Peppercorn, or Mango Habanero sausage topped with spicy aioli. Served with house blend chips and grilled jalapeño. Served at Terrace Grill at Budweiser Terrace for $8.75.
· Jumbo Shrimp Skewer: Four Jumbo Shrimp, grilled to order, marinated with minced garlic and fresh lime. Served with house blend chips and grilled jalapeño. Served at: Terrace Grill at Budweiser Terrace for $12.
· Grand Slam Mixed Grill: Sampling of Grilled Chicken Bats, Sausage Bites and Jumbo Shrimp Skewer. Served with house blend chips and grilled jalapeño. Served at: Terrace Grill at Budweiser Terrace for $25.
Budweiser Ballpark Pass
Following a successful launch in 2017, the popular ticket subscription service returns for 2018. Fans can attend as many Cardinals home games as they want each month for a monthly fee of $29.99. Subscribers will have a Standing Room Only ticket to each regular season game (except Opening Day) digitally delivered to their smartphone via the MLB.com Ballpark app. The subscription will automatically renew each month and subscribers can cancel at any time. To purchase the Budweiser Cardinals Ballpark Pass or for more information, visit cardinals.com/pass.
Cardinals 2018 Hall of Fame Voting
Earlier this month, Vince Coleman, Keith Hernandez, Jason Isringhausen, Ray Lankford, Scott Rolen, Lee Smith and John Tudor were revealed as the seven players nominated for possible induction into the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame. The seven nominees appear on the Cardinals Hall of Fame ballot online at cardinals.com/HOF presented by Edward Jones. The two players with the most online fan votes after voting concludes on April 12 will be inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame this August. #CardsHOF
Cardinals Museum 2018 Special Exhibit
This year’s new museum special exhibit entitled “Goodwill through Baseball: Cardinals Across the Pacific” examines how the Cardinals MLB’s baseball goodwill tours across the Pacific have helped pave the way for players to join leagues in the United States and Japan.
The exhibit features over 80 artifacts relating to the history of Major League Baseball on tour in Japan and highlights the Museum’s collection related to the Cardinals 1958 tour with Stan Musial and the club’s 1968 tour featuring Bob Gibson and Lou Brock. The special exhibit is open to the public through the conclusion of the 2018 baseball season and is included with admission to the museum. #CardsMuseum
Cardinals Insider with Ozzie Smith
Cardinals Insider is a Mid-America Emmy-nominated weekly news magazine television show hosted by Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith. Now in its third season, the club-produced, half-hour show is available within 17 television markets in nine states. It provides fans with behind-the-scenes, insider access to the Cardinals from team journalists. Cardinals Insider gives fans an all-access pass to everything Cardinals baseball featuring exclusive interviews, news updates, profiles and more. For more information and an updated programming schedule for the show, head to cardinals.com/insider. #CardsInsider
Cardinals Fan Music Contest
The club has launched the first-ever Cardinals Fan Music Contest as a way for fans to share their creativity and musical talent, along with their passion for Cardinals baseball. Fans are asked to write, perform and share an original Cardinals-inspired song/anthem and share the performance via a video or audio file. One lucky performance will be crowned the winner and receive a trip to Nashville to have their song professionally recorded and mastered at the Shoe Box Studios. The Cardinals will also produce a professional music video and share the artist’s work with all of Cardinals Nation! Details can be found at cardinals.com/MusicContest.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the 1998 Home Run Race that ultimately concluded with Mark McGwire establishing a new MLB single-season home run record. All season long, we will share content on our social media channels that helps fans relive the 1998 Home Run Race; including videos of all 70 of Big Mac’s home runs, real-time updates on the home run count of McGwire, Sosa and Griffey Jr. and fan images that convey the excitement of that amazing season. As part of the lookback, the team will be asking fans to share their photos, memorabilia, stories and experiences from the historic 1998 season as the fan perspective is an important part of this historic time in baseball. Fans can share their favorite #BigMacFlashback memories with us using our online submission form at cardinals.com/McGwire.
High School Video Challenge
In December, the Cardinals launched the Third Annual High School Video Challenge initiative that offers high school students in the St. Louis area a unique opportunity to compete for the chance to write, create and produce a video featuring Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith and Fredbird with the team at the students’ school. Students were asked to develop an original video that promotes the St. Louis Cardinals and the students’ high school. Three video submissions were selected as finalists from Clayton, Owensville and Rockwood Summit, which were then voted on by fans online. The Cardinals are happy to announce that the students from Clayton High School have won the High School Video Challenge! Their winning video entry can be seen at cardinals.com/studentvideochallenge.
2018 Official Team Media Guide
The Cardinals official team Media Guide has long been relied upon by journalists and broadcasters who cover the team. Containing stats, photos and biographies of every player in the Cardinals organization, along with the definitive history of the club since its inception, the official team Media Guide is the most comprehensive book about the Cardinals. The 2018 Media Guide is available for $20 at the Official Cardinals Team Store, Cardinals Authentics Shop or online at cardinals.com/mediaguide.
Official 2018 Cardinals Scorecard
Adorned with beautiful retro cover art by acclaimed St. Louis illustrator Mike Right—the scorecard designer since 2003—this season’s scorecard also features a tutorial on how to keep score the “Cardinal Way,” a method practiced by club officials since the 1940s. Purchase the scorecard individually—or with the latest edition of Cardinals Magazine for just $5—from Busch Stadium vendors inside the gates, team store locations and red merchandise carts. Scorecards are also available for purchase at cardinals.com/scorecard.
2018 Economic Impact Analysis
Based on a projected Cardinals regular season attendance of three million fans, the St. Louis Regional Chamber projects that the team will generate an estimated $160.4 million in direct impact and another $141.9 million in indirect spending. These impacts reach a total of $302.3 million in regional economic activity. The Chamber’s analysis uses the economic impact model, IMPLAN, which measures how spending tied to an event has multiple impacts and spreads throughout a region, thereby benefiting households and firms within the region. The figures are based on estimates of visitor spending and operations expenditures at Busch Stadium. Historically, out-of-town visitors constitute over 40% of game attendees and visitor spending on dining, lodging and shopping provides a significant boost to the regional economy.
Prior to tonight’s game, the St. Louis Cardinals placed infielder Jedd Gyorko (right hamstring strain) on the 10-day disabled list and recalled outfielder Harrison Bader from Memphis (AAA).
Bader, the Cardinals Minor League Player of the Year in 2017, made his Major League debut last season, appearing in 32 games, hitting three home runs in his first 11 games in the majors.
Bader, 23, posted a .283 batting mark with 20 home runs at Memphis (AAA) last season, starting 111 of his 117 games with the triple-A Redbirds in centerfield.
The right-handed hitting Bader appeared in 21 games this spring, batting .313 (15-for-48) and he finished 2nd on the team with his seven Grapefruit League doubles.
Bader wears uniform no. 48
Source: St. Louis Cardinals
The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have signed free-agent right-handed relief pitcher Greg Holland to a one-year contract. Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.
Holland, 32, pitched for the National League Wild Card-qualifying Colorado Rockies in 2017 after spending his first six Major League seasons with the Kansas City Royals (2010-15).
The three-time All-Star saved 41 games in 2017, tied with the Dodgers Kenley Jansen for the National League lead and he tied the Rockies franchise single-season saves record (Jose Jimenez – 2002).
Holland has a career record of 21-18 with a 2.60 ERA in 370 career appearances covering 377.0 innings with 500 strikeouts. He has converted 186 saves in 206 opportunities and ranks 4th among MLB relievers in save percentage (90.3%) since 2010.
In 2017, Holland was named National League Comeback Player of the Year and also earned National League Relief Pitcher of the Month for April and May converting 19 of 19 saves and his first 23 saves, not recording a blown save until June 15.
Holland and Jansen are the only two pitchers with three 40-save seasons since 2013, posting 40 or more saves in 2013, 2014 and 2017, missing 2016 while recovering from Tommy John surgery, which also removed him from the Kansas City Royals 2015 postseason run.
He posted career-highs with 47 saves, 103 strikeouts and a 1.21 ERA in 2013 earning him a 9th-place finish in the American League Cy Young Award voting. In 2014, Holland recorded 46 saves and again finished 9th in the A.L. Cy Young voting.
Since 2013, Holland ranks third among Major League pitchers with 166 saves trailing only Craig Kimbrel (202) and Jansen (196). His 12.14 strikeouts/9 IP is ranked 9th among MLB relievers and he ranks 6th striking out 33.8% of total batters faced.
In postseason play, Holland is 7-for-7 in save opportunities making 12 appearances with a 2.31 ERA and 15 strikeouts with 11.2 innings pitched. He is one of six players in MLB history with seven saves in a single postseason.
Holland will wear uniform No. 56 and Bullpen Coach Bryan Eversgerd will change to No. 72.
St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals and Athletics have swapped a pair of right-handers. Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that reliever Josh Lucas is headed to the A’s, with the Cardinals receiving minor-league starter Casey Meisner in exchange.
The 27-year-old Lucas made his majors debut last season with St. Louis, tossing 7 1/3 relief innings across five appearances. He struck out seven hitters and walked four while allowing three earned runs. Across the past two seasons in the Cardinals’ farm system, the righty posted a K/9 north of 10 and a ground ball rate of nearly 50%. He has 49 career MiLB saves, but was designated for assignment by the Cards earlier this week, a move that came as something of a surprise considering that Lucas seems to carry some upside.
The towering 6’7″ Meisner had a solid showing with the A’s High-A affiliate last season, posting a 3.98 ERA with 9.64 K/9. However, he struggled a bit upon a midseason promotion to Double-A; after that point, the 22-year-old averaged fewer than five innings per start while seeing his walk rate nearly double and his strikeout rate plummet to 5.64 K/9. Meisner was selected by the Mets in the third round of the 2013 draft, and subsequently traded to the A’s in exchange for reliever Tyler Clippard.
The St. Louis Cardinals have announced they will produce 39 Spanish language home radio broadcasts during the 2018 season as part of the club’s continuing effort to better reach the team’s rapidly growing Spanish-speaking fan base.
The club will produce the broadcasts in cooperation with WIJR 880 “La Tremenda” to provide game play-by-play from announcer Polo Ascencio and color commentary from former Cardinals Assistant Hitting Coach Bengie Molina for the team’s home opener and every Friday, Saturday and Sunday home game. All 39 home broadcasts will air on WIJR 8800 AM and will also be streamed via cardinals.com and the MLB.com At Bat mobile app.
“We are proud to partner with the St. Louis Cardinals to air these Spanish language radio broadcasts,” said Manuel Rivera, President of WIJR. “The Cardinals are doubling the number of Spanish broadcasts they aired last year and we couldn’t be more excited to bring the game into the homes of the team’s Hispanic & Latino fans.”
The expanded Spanish language radio broadcast schedule is just one of many initiatives the Cardinals have developed to provide Hispanic and Latino fans with a way to follow the team in their native language. The Cardinals have verified Spanish language Twitter (@cardenales) and Facebook (facebook.com/stlcardenales) accounts; and just recently created a verified Spanish language Instagram account (@stlcardenales). The accounts have amassed over 13,000 followers, allowing users to see real time updates about the Cardinals and unique Spanish language content designed to take fans behinds the scenes with the team.
Last year, the Cardinals launched the #SomosSTL Spanish language landing page at cardinals.com/somosstl that compiles and aggregates all of the Cardinals’ Spanish broadcast, video and social initiatives in one location for fans to easily access.
Furthermore, the club established Los Cardenales, a dedicated Spanish-language video page to house video features the Cardinals produce as part of their expanding video brand journalism efforts. The Los Cardenales video page can be found at cardinals.com/loscardenales.
Source: St. Louis Cardinals
Holland agreed to a one-year, $14 million contract with the Cardinals on Thursday, pending a physical, Jon Heyman of FanRagSports.com reports.
It took them until Opening Day, but the Cardinals finally found their answer in the ninth inning in Holland. While he has been keeping his arm in shape, it seems likely that Holland will need a brief minor-league tuneup before slotting into the big-league bullpen. Dominic Leone and Tyler Lyons will share setup duties for St. Louis once Holland is active, at least until Luke Gregerson (hamstring) makes it back from the
Cardinals’ manager Mike Matheny announced Saturday that Luke Gregerson (hamstring) will begin the season on the 10-day disabled list. Matheny also added that either Dominic Leone or Tyler Lyons would function as the team’s closer in Gregerson’s absence. Well this was just reported ……..Jim Bowden of The Athletic confirms in a tweet that the Braves, Diamondbacks and Cardinals have all checked in on free agent reliever Greg Holland. However, none of them feel as though they can be competitive financially based on the right-hander’s current asking price. Bowden suggests that Holland should take the best offer on the table. With less than a week left until opening day, it’s hard to argue that point.
I was somewhat surprise with Carson Kelly’s spring training performance that led him being sent down to Memphis but I am very happy that Francisco Pena is our new back up catcher. His dad Tony Pena must be very proud of him!
Pena has earned his way over Carson Kelly as back up catcher and it was this competition that gave Pena the edge to get the call over Kelly.
Pena said….. “As a backup you want to prioritize as a defensive guy, “You want to have the opportunity to show the pitchers you’re there for them. And be a good guy in the clubhouse as well because you know the role. Play the game hard. Don’t try to do too much. Have a smile on my face, always. And leave the decisions to the people in the front office.”
Source: Derrick Goold
At this point in Spring Training Yairo Munoz has my attention. With great skills in the outfield and infield it may look like Harrison Bader is in his way. In an article by Derrick Goold….”Impressive,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Yairo Munoz after the Cardinals beat the Marlins 11-4 on Tuesday at Roger Dean Stadium. Munoz is now 12-for-32 (.375) with two home runs, two doubles and twice as many hits (12) as strikeouts. That 12th hit took the lead for the Cardinals this spring. And shortstop marked his fourth position played.
The Cardinals tend to carry 13 pitchers, it’s most likely that the versatile Munoz is competing with Harrison Bader and Jose Adolis Garcia for role of fourth outfielder, a race that slugging prospect Tyler O’Neill was removed from when he was optioned to Class AAA.
I hope he gets a chance.
So what is the deal with Free Agent Jake Arrieta? How come the Cardinals are not looking at him? Is it his age, the amount of money he wants, or the decline of his pitching arm?
Arrieta reportedly is looking for more than Darvish’s deal, but then aren’t we all? Some talk goes back to a four-year, $88 million offer, which doesn’t top Darvish’s total payday, but does come with some bragging rights.
Darvish reportedly is guaranteed $25 million this season, $4 million more than his average annual value. A Cardinals or Brewers deal with Arrieta could start at, say, $28 million for 2018 and pay him $20 million each of the remaining three seasons. Voila, not only a higher average annual salary than Darvish but also the highest free-agent pitcher salary this year.
It’s always fun to spend other people’s millions, isn’t it? Who knows, maybe Arrieta will decide $88 million is enough when coupled with the chance to be a Cubs killer instead of the Cubs ace, and maybe the Cardinals or Brewers will decide a decorated pitcher who remade himself in the middle of a division race last season now knows who he is and what he’s doing, and would have some extra motivation to execute all that.
Why have teams been slow to ink Arrieta? Below is an analytical look at reasons why MLB front offices are hesitant to commit to the former Cubs ace.
This isn’t surprising to those who watched Arrieta pitch the past season, but Arrieta’s velocity might be the most concerning part of his profile. Below are Arrieta’s dips over the past three seasons on each of his pitch types, per Statcast™ and pitch-tracking data:
Sinker (2015/ ’16/ ’17): 95.3 mph / 94.5 mph / 92.2 mph
Four-seam fastball: 95.1 mph / 94.2 mph / 92.1 mph
Curveball: 81.3 mph / 81.1 mph / 78.8 mph
Slider: 90.8 mph / 89.8 mph / 87.8 mph
Changeup: 89.5 mph / 89.2 mph / 87.3 mph
Arrieta essentially shelved his four-seamer last season, throwing it only 54 times after he’d averaged 629 in the prior two campaigns. That took away a pitch with a healthy 24.5 percent whiff-per-swing rate in 2015-16, as well as an offering he could tunnel alongside his changeup and breaking balls.
Arrieta’s 25.7 percent whiff rate on all his pitches sat just outside the top 20 qualified MLB starters in ’15 (min. 1,000 total swings induced), but slipped to 21.5 percent last season. Declining velocity is maybe the most obvious red flag for a free-agent pitcher, and it appears Arrieta will have to rely more on craft and command in the years ahead.
Arrieta’s peak three seasons ago ranks among the greatest performances in baseball history. But his next team will be paying for the future, not the past, and the data suggests that zenith is likely in the rear-view mirror.
Arrieta still possesses the skill, guile and competitiveness to retire Major League hitters, but for how long? Teams may be wondering if Arrieta could truly fulfill the value of the mega contract he’s seeking.
Source: MLB\Matt Kelly
The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that individual tickets for the 2018 season will go on sale this Friday, February 23, beginning at 10 a.m. CT.
Fans who wish to purchase tickets to three or more games will receive early access to take part in a special online-only “multi-game” ticket sale beginning today, Wednesday, February 21, at 10 a.m. CT.
In addition to hosting top National League teams such as the Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers and Washington Nationals, the Cardinals’ 2018 home schedule features interleague matchups with American League Central teams including the defending AL Central Champion Cleveland Indians (June 25-27), Chicago White Sox (May 1-2), Minnesota Twins (May 7-8); the Redbirds will host their American League rival, Kansas City Royals, for a three-game set May 21-23.
This year’s schedule also features over 40 promotional dates for fans of all ages, with many returning favorites such as bobbleheads, replica rings and replica jerseys. A few, new items that will salute Cardinals historic moments and current roster favorites include a lightweight quarter-zip performance pullover (April 8), a “Yadi” tumbler (June 1), and a Dizzy Dean watch (August 19). Also new for 2018, fans will have the opportunity to help select a t-shirt design for a monthly t-shirt promotional giveaway.
As in previous seasons, the Cardinals will continue to offer great values in 2018 with ticket prices starting as low as $5.
“Busch Stadium should be an enjoyable and affordable experience for all fans,” said Bill DeWitt III, President of the Cardinals. “Thanks to our dynamic ticket pricing system, we’re able to provide great deals on a consistent basis.”
The Cardinals’ dynamic pricing system allows the team to more accurately price tickets for individual games and provide fans more value. In 2017, 72% of games featured tickets available for $10 or less and 33% of games featured tickets at $5 or below. Throughout the season, the team will continue to offer “Dynamic Deals of the Week” highlighting outstanding ticket savings for fans, as well as a host of other fan-friendly values which can be found at cardinals.com/fanvalues.
Sales for multi-game and single-game tickets are both available online at cardinals.com. In addition, tickets for Friday’s on-sale are available via phone at 314-345-9000 or in person at the Busch Stadium Ticket Windows and kiosks.
A full list of fan-friendly values for the 2018 season follows:
2018 Fan-Friendly Values
Dynamic Pricing: Ticket prices fluctuate based on market value, meaning many games will feature tickets as low as $5.
Great Promotional Giveaways: MLB’s best premium items including replica jerseys, replica rings and bobbleheads highlight a season of over 40 stadium giveaways and special promotions.
Outside Food & Drinks at All Games: Busch Stadium is the only St. Louis sports venue where fans may bring in their own food and drinks for all home games (some size and content restrictions apply).
Budweiser Ballpark Pass: After a successful 2017 debut, the popular monthly digital ticket subscription will return in 2018. The Pass delivers a standing room ticket for every home game for just $29.99 per month.
KMOX 1120 First Pitch Tickets: At 9:00 a.m. CT on the day of each home game, fans may purchase a voucher good for two tickets for just $11.20 ($5.60 per ticket). Fans redeem their vouchers for actual tickets 15 minutes prior to game time. Tickets may be anywhere in the stadium from Field Box to Standing Room.
Nathan’s Famous Family Sundays: On most Sundays, fans who purchase RF/LF Pavilion or RF Terrace tickets will receive a free jumbo hot dog and Coca-Cola.
Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sundays: Two hours prior to each Sunday game, enjoy games, prizes and free Prairie Farms ice cream and North Star frozen treats in Ford Plaza.
AAA Discounts Rewards: AAA members receive a $10 discount off tickets on most Monday-Thursday games.
Fill Up at Phillips 66: Fill up with eight (8) gallons or more at a participating Phillips 66 to receive a special discount ticket offer of up to 50% off many 2018 games.
Six Flags Double Play Combo: Get a Cardinals game ticket and a Six Flags one-day ticket for only $55.
Ticket Packs: Several different 5-game and 10-game ticket packs are available, which feature discounted tickets to 2018’s best promotional giveaways and highest demand games.
Group Value Nights: Select games throughout the season where groups of 20 or more receive 50% off regular ticket prices.
Cards Cash: Stored money built into the barcode of your ticket, good for use at any Busch Stadium concession stand, kiosk or Team Store. Fans can add $12 Cards Cash to a ticket for just $10.
For more details, visit cardinals.com/fanvalues.
All 30 Major League teams will wear Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School baseball caps before their Spring Training games this weekend to show support for the Parkland, Fla., community and the Stoneman Douglas student body after the tragic shooting at the school on Feb. 14.
Players across MLB will then be signing the caps and auctioning them to raise money for the Broward Education Foundation, which will benefit the official Stoneman Douglas Victims’ Fund. Seventeen people were killed in the shooting, including 14 students and three staff members.
MLB teams will wear the caps pregame on Friday and will also be allowed to wear them during their games. Since they’re off on Friday, the Royals and Rangers will don the hats on Saturday.
The effort started with a few Grapefruit League teams, which wanted to wear the caps pregame, and it quickly spread across camps in Florida and Arizona. Soon all 30 teams had decided to join in the support and fundraising effort for the school community.
Commissioner Rob Manfred then approved the use of the caps during all games on Friday, the Spring Training openers for most of the clubs.
The caps made for the fundraising effort will be provided to all players, coaches and umpires.
David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler.
This just came in from Jon Heyman……..The Cardinals will have evaluators at Tim Lincecum’s showcase tomorrow, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman (Twitter link). St. Louis will join at least 12 other teams in watching the former two-time Cy Young Award winner throw as he attempts a comeback after missing all over the 2017 season.
I have also heard that Tim Lincecum has bulked up in size. He will pitch in a showcase in Seattle.
Lincecum appeared in nine games for the Angels in 2016. He posted a 9.16 earned-run average as he returned from hip surgery. He did not pitch in professional baseball last season.
Lincecum reemerged into the baseball world in December, when Kyle Boddy, the founder of training facility Driveline Baseball, announced Lincecum would attempt another comeback.
During nine years with San Francisco, Lincecum played a role on three World Series champions. His best days occurred before the Giants became October regulars: In his Cy Young years in 2008 and 2009, Lincecum went 33-12 with a 2.55 ERA and struck out 526 batters. His performance waned as his velocity dipped.
Pitchers and catchers have officially reported to Spring Training, and to celebrate the St. Louis Cardinals announced a special 12-hour flash ticket sale tomorrow from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. CT.
Fans can purchase tickets for any Monday—Thursday games in 2018 for just $5 (excluding Opening Day). Additionally, each $5 ticket purchased will be pre-loaded with $5 in Cards Cash for fans to use towards concessions or merchandise inside Busch Stadium.
Fans can purchase up to eight of the special $5 tickets per person, per game. Tickets will be available at cardinals.com, at the Busch Stadium Box Office during regular hours (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.) or via phone at 314.345.9000. Again, this special ticket flash sale will only be available until 10:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, February 13.
St. Louis Cardinals
It’s a one-year, Major League contract for Norris, tweets SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. The Cardinals are in agreement on a contract with free-agent righty Bud Norris, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (via Twitter). His contract is pending a physical. Norris is represented by Wasser.
It’s not yet clear whether Norris, 33 next month, signed a Major League or Minor League contract, though the latter is a possibility following a rough finish to what began as a strong 2017 season. The 4.21 ERA that Norris authored through 62 innings last season doesn’t look overly impressive, but he was somewhat quietly dominant through the season’s first half; in 36 1/3 innings prior to the All-Star break, Norris notched a 2.23 ERA that was backed by a 2.96 FIP and a 3.21 xFIP. In that time, the starter-turned-reliever averaged 11.6 K/9 against 3.5 BB/9 with a 47.6 percent ground-ball rate.
However, Norris missed time in late June and early July with a knee injury, and upon his return, his success quickly deteriorated. Then the Halos’ closer, Norris improbably served up a pair of grand slams (being charged for all four runs in each instance) within a span of six days, ballooning his ERA from 2.23 to 3.89. Things didn’t get any better for him in the month of August, and he again hit the disabled list late that month due to inflammation in the same problematic right knee. Overall, Norris perhaps quite literally limped to a 7.01 ERA following the All-Star break and watched his K/9 (9.5), BB/9 (4.6) and ground-ball rates (41.8 percent) all go in the wrong direction.
The Cardinals, though, could be heartened by the fact that Norris’ success out of the ’pen in the past couple of seasons has corresponded with a notable change in his pitch selection, as he’s largely abandoned his four-seam fastball in exchange for a cutter and sinker. If those changes and better health can allow him to sustain production more in line with last year’s first half than his nightmarish second half, then Norris could prove to be a bargain for a Cardinals team whose late-inning relief mix still looks to be rather unsettled.
As things stand, Luke Gregerson could well head into the year as the closer, though St. Louis also picked up righty Dominic Leone from the Blue Jays in the Randal Grichuk trade, and lefty Tyler Lyons had a breakout year as a high-leverage reliever last season. Any from that mix could conceivably find his way into the ninth inning in 2018, as could righty Alex Reyes when he returns from Tommy John surgery (even though the organization views him as a starter long term).
MLB Trade Rumors
Free agent hurler Lance Lynn has received interest from “seven or eight teams,” according to a report from Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. His former team, the Cardinals, is not one of them.
Lynn, of course, declined a qualifying offer from St. Louis at the start the offseason. It seems the club is now content to allow him to leave, knowing that it’ll receive a draft choice after the Competitive Balance Round B selections so long as Lynn signs before this year’s draft.
Clearly, Lynn is worthy of punting some draft compensation. But while the CBA’s new qualifying offer rules have generally put that matter on the back burner, parting with draft value is still a factor in any free agent case. (MLBTR has run down what draft picks each team would need to sacrifice to sign a qualified free agent such as Lynn.)
As we’ve noted of late, Lynn has had a quiet offseason but remains an easy-to-visualize fit with quite a few organizations. Among the teams showing some level of interest, per Goold, are the Brewers and Cubs — two teams that are plenty familiar with Lynn from his lengthy stint with the Cardinals. The article also rounds up reported interest from other quarters, mentioning the Orioles, Twins, Nationals, and Mets as plausible suitors. Indeed, a run through MLBTR’s log of posts involving Lynn shows no shortage of possibilities.
Lynn himself discussed the situation with Goold, though he declined to get into specifics on teams. You’ll want to read the entire piece, as it’s loaded with interesting information and discussion, but generally Lynn suggests he feels comfortable preparing as normal despite his lack of a contract. “I haven’t missed anything,” he said. “There’s nothing really to worry about — at this moment.”
Goold also examines Lynn’s value against prior open-market players, suggesting the Tigers’ signing of Jordan Zimmermann — five years and $110MM, with strong no-trade protection — as a comp. While there’s certainly an argument to be made for that kind of analogy given Lynn’s bottom-line results, the view of MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes — as explained first in the MLBTR Top 50 Free Agents list and expanded upon in his free agent profile of Lynn — is that the veteran righty isn’t quite in that stratosphere, due in large part to concerns with the peripherals. MLBTR has pegged Lynn for a four-year deal in the $14MM or $15MM annual range, citing a variety of teams as plausible fits on paper.
In large part, the overall market picture remains much the same as it was when Dierkes set out to evaluate things before the action got underway. Just how Lynn’s situation will shake out, though, is even more difficult to predict now than it was then. The overall tenor of Lynn’s comments, and Goold’s reporting, suggests that this free agent case is not particularly close to resolution.