The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have traded third baseman David Freese and relief pitcher Fernando Salas to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in exchange for outfielders Peter Bourjos and Randal Grichuk.
The immediate effect of the deal is that it opens up third base for Matt Carpenter and, as a result, second base for prospect Kolten Wong. It also shores up their defense in center field with the addition of Bourjos.
Considering that Freese and Salas were widely thought to be non-tender candidates, this trade is believed to be quite the coup for Cardinals’ General Manager John Mozeliak.
David Freese was the hero of the 2011 World Series and a St. Louis native, so his connection to the area made him a hard player to trade. Logically though it made sense. Freese is 30 years old and coming off his worst season in a Cardinals’ uniform and also stands to get a substaintial raise in arbitration. Because of that, the odds of him returning to the Cardinals in 2014 were slim. The question that Mozeliak had to ask himself was whether we’d get the 2012 Freese (.293, 20 HR) or 2013 Freese (.262, 9 HR) going forward. Continue reading
Mike Matheny announced today that Adam Wainwright and Lance Lynn will start games one and two, respectively, of the National League Divisional Series. The Cardinals are home in St. Louis where they await the winner of tonight’s NL Wild Card between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds. It represents a change in the order of the rotation as we enter the playoffs as Lynn had been scheduled to start on days preceding Wainwright’s turn in the rotation.
There’s been some surprise that the Cardinals announced their starters early, ahead of finding out who they will play in Thursday afternoon’s game one.
Wainwright, 32, finished up the season with a 19-9 record and a 2.94 ERA. He led the league in wins, starts (34), complete games (5), shutouts (2), innings pitched (241.2), and batters faced (856). He is the ace of the Cardinals rotation and they had previously moved him to make his last start on Saturday so that he could start game one on regular rest. Wainwright is 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA over his last five starts. Continue reading
Jaime Garcia will be shut down once again, the Cardinals announced today as they placed Garcia on the 15-day Disabled List and recalled Mitchell Boggs from Triple-A Memphis. I’m sure I’ll post about Mitchell Boggs later, but he isn’t fixed yet.
Many fans and bloggers have already tried to pin this on the Cardinals’ medical staff as a mistake. They’ll say that he should have had the surgery last year. That they called it that he needed it. Lets remember here that there is only one man who can elect to have surgery, that man is Jaime Garcia. The club and the doctors can want him to have surgery, but if Garcia wants to try rehab, then they try rehab. So to say that the doctors prescribed rest and rehab for it assumes facts not in evidence.
And it’s not that I want to let the Cardinals medical staff off scott free. I’ll say that they do make plenty of mistakes. What I am saying is that this wasn’t a mistake. Continue reading
The Triple-A Memphis Redbirds will begin their 2013 season tonight at Auto Zone Park against the Oklahoma City Redhawks, an affiliate of the Houston Astros. Major league third baseman David Freese will be in town, expected to begin a rehab stint this weekend, which will be a treat for Memphis fans. John Gast, talked about as one of the Cardinals’ best left handed pitching prospects, will get the opening day start. He struggled in Memphis last season but will be looking for redemption.
The April 1st roster released by the team features seven players who are on the Cardinals’ 40 man roster. Left handed outfielder Adron Chambers is the only position player. Joining him are right handed pitchers Maikel Cleto, Victor Marte, Eduardo Sanchez, Eric Fornataro, and Jorge Rondon. Left handed reliever Sam Freeman will also start the season there.
The Memphis team will also feature 2012 first round pick Michael Wacha and 2011 first round pick Kolten Wong. Wacha will start in the rotation while Wong will play second base. It also has the #3 prospect in all of baseball according to Baseball America in Oscar Taveras. Continue reading
After an offseason of uncertainty around Adam Wainwright’s future with the Cardinals, the team put that to rest today, introducing Wainwright’s new deal. The team’s number one pitcher put ink on a reported 5 year, $97 million extension that will keep the 31 year old righthander in Cardinal red through 2018. He’ll be 37 the next time he’s scheduled for free agency.
The deal means that he’ll keep pitching to the guy pictured with him, Yadier Molina, for at least the next five years. Molina signed his own five year extension last offseason now making it two years in a row the team has sealed up it’s biggest pending free agent to a longterm extension, spoiling the thoughts of those who figured letting Albert Pujols walk was a sign of things to come for the team.
The new deal will pay Wainwright $19.5 million per year in average annual value and begin in the 2014 season. When you consider the deals that top caliber pitching have been getting in free agency, you have to think that Wainwright left an awful lot on the table in negotiations. The opinion of many is that if he were to turn in a Wainwright-like season this year, he could have easily grabbed $23-25 million per year in free agency. Continue reading
The St. Louis Cardinals made their first cuts of spring training today, sending catchers Adam Ehrlich and Jesus Montero, along with infielder Starlin Rodriguez to minor league camp. The team may make additional cuts over the next couple days with minor league spring training expected to begin March 6th.
Ehrlich has appeared in 3 games and has walked in both of his plate appearances. Montero has appeared once and struck out in his only plate appearance. Rodriguez has gotten the most playing time, appearing in three games going 1-for-4 with a double.
The move leaves 55 players remaining in camp, you can check to see who is left on my Spring Roster page.