Blog Entry

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

Posted on: July 27, 2011 3:59 pm
The stat guys will wonder how the Cardinals could ever trade Colby Rasmus, who is 24 years old and ranked just behind Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier and Ryan Braun in OPS+ last year.

I'm wondering if the Cardinals just made the move that puts them in position to win the National League Central.

I'm not convinced, but I do know that the Cardinals had to improve their bullpen if they were going to have any chance to top the Brewers, Reds and even the Pirates in the bunched-up NL Central race. They did that already, and as colleague Scott Miller reports, the Cardinals remain engaged with the Padres in an effort to acquire closer Heath Bell.

By acquiring Edwin Jackson (who the Blue Jays got from the White Sox Wednesday morning), the Cardinals could move Kyle McClellan back to the bullpen, where he had so much success last year. They also acquired veteran right-hander Octavio Dotel and young lefty Marc Rzepczynski from the Blue Jays, adding significant depth to a bullpen that is tied for second in the majors in most blown saves.

"Dotel is pitching good," said one scout who watched him in the last week. "He's not what he once was, but his velocity is up, and his slider is sharper."

According to Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Cardinals tried to obtain James Shields or Jeremy Hellickson in exchange for Rasmus, but the Rays held tight to their decision not to move either one. Strauss reported that the Cardinals turned down a package of Jeff Niemann and J.P. Howell, before settling on the Jackson-plus-bullpen-help package from the Blue Jays.

For Toronto, the Rasmus trade is another example of buying low on a top talent, much as the Jays did last year when they sent Alex Gonzalez to the Braves for Yunel Escobar. Escobar was an out-of-favor talent, much as Rasmus is now.

Rasmus feuded each of the past two years with Cardinals manager Tony La Russa, and the word around the Cards was that Albert Pujols wasn't fond of him, either. As talented as Rasmus is, it was starting to appear that things would never work out for him in St. Louis, much as it appeared things wouldn't work out for Escobar in Atlanta.

Jackson is headed for free agency at the end of the year, and Dotel is 37 years old, so it's not as if the Cardinals were dealing with the future in mind. But with a team that is built to win now, and with Pujols in the final year of his contract, the Cardinals are understandably focused much more on 2011 than on 2012 and the future.


Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: February 19, 2012 9:53 am

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 12, 2012 10:44 am
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 30, 2011 8:06 am

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

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Since: Nov 19, 2011
Posted on: December 23, 2011 5:27 am

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 3, 2011 12:47 am

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

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Since: Nov 27, 2011
Posted on: November 27, 2011 12:57 pm

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 21, 2011 6:28 pm
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Since: Oct 18, 2008
Posted on: July 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

I totally agree with this move. Colby started to remind us of J.D. Drew, another guy with so much potential. It took J.D. a few years after leaving STL before even becoming an all-star.  I just thought there so many holes in Colby swing. He won't hit for any kind of average until he starts going to the opposite field. How many homers has he hit to left field or left center. Not very many. Plus  we needed pitching more thant an inconsistent bat. Maybe, we brought up to soon. It just seems the season is still too long for him. I might be wrong but thats my take on Colby.

Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: July 28, 2011 12:00 pm

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

maybe dave duncan can work his magic with edwin jackson better than his previous 5 employers. jackson, for all his "potential" has never been more
than a mediocre starting pitcher. his 55-58 won-lost record and his lifetime 4.53 era speak volumes in this area. if edwin is a great pickup, then
why did all these other teams give up on him? if the cards can consistently score 5 or more runs each time he starts, then he'll probably be hailed as
the next best thing since sliced bread. i'm not bettin' on it.    

Since: Aug 1, 2008
Posted on: July 28, 2011 8:51 am

Cardinals are about the now, not about the stats

While the Cards bullpen is converting saves at a miserable (61%), their pen was still better than the team whose rejects they acquired, Toronto (55%)

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