Everywhere I go, I hear almost the same words to describe the St. Louis Cardinals off-season. Inevitably, it is, “the Cardinals need to spend some money.”
There is no argument from me. What has the organization done to spend some of the $1B TV contract it signed? Very little except for spare parts. No free agents of any girth have been signed, only extra pieces with the main part for the bullpen.
Exclusively, the work has been done by trade. Marcell Ozuna was a trade. Piscotty going away was a trade and Randal Grichuk and Aledmys Diaz go to Toronto in a trade.
Cardinal fans are waiting. They attend games in droves but don’t witness the organization as using those resources to put back into the ballclub. What they see is Ballpark Village beginning a new phase but no free agents.
For some reason, John Mozeliak dislikes signing free agents because he has to give up a draft pick. When you don that you are setting your team back as the draft pick has to develop.
There is no urgency, it appears, to make the Cardinals better. It has been the mantra of the brass that the current players if they play to their potential, will be good enough to make the playoffs. Afterall, isn’t that all the Cardinals appear to be doing?
“The Cardinals Gotta Spend Some Money” is correct.
Pitchers and Catchers are expected to be in Jupiter on February 13.
Cardinals pitching prospects Dakota Hudson, Jordan Hicks and Ryan Helsley headline a crop of 23 non-roster players who have received an invitation to participate in big league camp this spring.
The group of non-roster invitees features eight players — Hudson (No. 7), Randy Arozarena (No. 9) Max Schrock (No. 11), Hicks (No. 13), Jacob Woodford (No. 15), Helsley (No. 22), Tommy Edman (No. 24) and Andrew Knizner (No. 27) — who finished 2017 ranked as a Top 30 Prospect by MLB Pipeline.
Also notable is the inclusion of right-hander Daniel Poncedeleon, who has fully recovered from being struck in the head by a line drive in an appearance last May. Poncedeleon underwent emergency brain surgery within hours of being hit and has not pitched in a game setting since.
Pitchers: Sean Gilmartin, Preston Guilmet, Helsley, Hicks, Hudson, Hector Mendoza, Poncedeleon, Arturo Reyes, Jordan Schafer, Woodford
Catchers: Steven Baron, Knizner, Jeremy Martinez, Dennis Ortega, Francisco Pena
Infielders: Edman, Alex Mejia, Rangel Ravelo, Schrock, Wilfredo Tovar, Patrick Wisdom
Outfielders: Arozarena, Jose Adolis Garcia
All pitchers and catchers are required to report to Jupiter, Fla., by Feb. 13, one day before the club holds its first official workout of Spring Training. The Cardinals’ first full-squad workout is scheduled for Feb. 19.
Not only have the Cardinals’ offseason additions selected their uniform numbers, but several returning players have swapped in theirs for some new digits.
Changes are in order for pitchers Alex Reyes and Luke Weaver, who will take Nos. 29 and 7, respectively. The organization’s top catching prospect, Carson Kelly, has also nabbed a new number befitting his rising place on the roster: No. 19.
Paul DeJong willingly gave No. 11 back to returning third-base coach Jose Oquendo and will use No. 12. And following his first full season in the Majors, Jose Martinez has switched to No. 38.
As for the team’s three notable offseason acquisitions, they have selected Nos. 23 (Marcell Ozuna), 39 (Miles Mikolas) and 44 (Luke Gregerson). New pitching coach Mike Maddux will wear No. 31.
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