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Postby SaintsOfTheDiamond » Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:57 am

These are probably all old news, but it's new to me so I thought I'd post. :-D

News:
From MLB.com Several players there, but this is what caught my eye :-)
MLB.com wrote: Rick Ankiel, LHP: Obviously this is the guy that people are watching the most closely, and so far it's been worth seeing. Ankiel's 4.05 ERA for Carolina in the Puerto Rican league doesn't necessarily catch your eye, but check this out: he's struck out 18 against only three walks in 13 1/3 innings. That's exciting stuff.
Views:
Obvisouly it's only winter ball, but if he could have a ratio of half that he will easily replace Kline in the pen IMO. ;-D

************************

News:
From MLB.com again.
MLB.com wrote:Pujols might not need surgery....Cardinals slugger undergoes different procedure
Views:
I'm obviously not a doctor, and it sounds like this is could be a good thing, but the last line of the article worries me a little. I guess you possibly avoid the complications of surgery with the new procedure. :-?

************************

News:
From MLB.com again.
MLB.com wrote:Polanco could return to Redbirds
Former Cards second baseman's agent talking to club
Views:I don't know why, but Polanco just seems to be a better fit every time I read news about him possibly coming back. The only thing for me is of course the price and him not really being a leadoff hitter. :-/

************************

News:
From STLPD
STLPD wrote:
Cards will add McRae to staff as hitting coach
Views:
Obviously with the hitters they have I could probably coach them, but he seems like a good fit and good choice. ;-D Something else from the same article I found of interest:
There is sentiment within the organization to pursue Placido Polanco as an everyday second baseman; however, signing Renteria may eliminate the flexibility needed to offer Polanco a multi-year deal. If Renteria returns, the Cardinals would again commit more than $7 million next season to four position players and $5.5 million to a fifth (right fielder Larry Walker). Second base and catcher then would lend themselves to cheaper options, according to a club source.

Sure seems like a lot, but I guess they're worth it. (I'm assuming Edmonds is the fourth?)

************************

News:
From STLPD again.
STLPD wrote:Since I've been playing here, I don't think I've made any secret that I'd prefer to remain with the Cardinals," said Matheny, who played the final season of a three-year, $8 million contract this year. "But there has to be interest on their part as well."
Views:
Guess it's not looking like he's going to give much of a hometown discount. :-D While he's a very important part of the team and the pitching staff, I'm not sure more than the $2-$3+ million range he's apparently looking for is worth it for a defensive catcher. :-°
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Postby StlSluggers » Sun Dec 05, 2004 9:00 pm

I want to chime in on Polanco. First, I want to admit my second biggest mistake ever: I actually called Bernie at KMOX one night to bitch and moan about trading Polanco and then signing Rolen to a high-money, long-term contract. I felt that Polanco was a much cheaper option to play third and that the money would have been better spent on pitching.

Hindsight being 20/20, I was massively wrong insomuch as the fact that we made the World Series this year. I still say it was good luck because that staff was performing at the peak-of-peaks all of last year, but I'll eat my crow when I'm wrong*. I just wanted to get that out there for my next comment.

Second, it's very interesting that now that Polanco might come back, I find myself using the same logic against signing him that I used to argue that we should have kept him. In other words, I don't mind signing him, but it better not come at the expense of us signing a top-notch pitcher.

Last, if we do sign him, does he have to bat leadoff? Is there a way to get him into the number two slot? He's such a good contact hitter that I think that spot was practically made for him, particularly with his modest power increase as of late. Or is there a better spot in the lineup for his contact that I'm not considering? Seventh behind Renteria?

I know that screws with our big guns. Our lineup is so weird. It's so good that it defies conventional wisdom for establishing a lineup.

*-I could argue that Polanco's power surge combined with a higher-quality pitcher might have actually offset the effect Rolen had last year, but a) I'd be stretching there, and b) it would all be theoretical.
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Postby j_d_mcnugent » Mon Dec 06, 2004 12:30 am

if he was signed i think he would bat second. edgar or whoever is playing ss will have to bat leadoff. i dont know that anyone else would be able to bat leadoff. walker has the obp to bat leadoff but i would prefer his bat in an rbi situation.
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Postby SaintsOfTheDiamond » Tue Dec 07, 2004 12:08 am

j_d_mcnugent wrote:if he was signed i think he would bat second. edgar or whoever is playing ss will have to bat leadoff. i dont know that anyone else would be able to bat leadoff. walker has the obp to bat leadoff but i would prefer his bat in an rbi situation.


Yeah that's one of the (very) few problems with this team offensively. Everyone except maybe Matheny could really hit in the heart of the order, but there aren't any true leadoff men if Womack leaves. :-?
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Postby SaintsOfTheDiamond » Wed Dec 08, 2004 1:05 am

Just wondering what everyone thinks the Nomar signing will do to the Renteria situation. Maybe it's wishful thinking, but this seems like it should maybe cut back on his demands a little bit, at least I would hope. :-?


And according to this thread, Womack isn't coming back either. I guess that one wasn't really a shock, but it looks like they're going to have to go after a leadoff man since there isn't really anyone in the lineup to take over there. :-?
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Postby StlSluggers » Wed Dec 08, 2004 10:21 am

I definitely think this makes the Renteria situation different. This puts it between the Cards and the Sox, and the Sox are busy trying not to get raped by Pedro and Boras. I think we can not only keep Renteria now, but I think we'll get him for less than was projected.

This will make room to sign Polanco. I think it's almost a given now that they sign him.
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Postby Mookie4ever » Wed Dec 08, 2004 11:39 am

Isn't Ankiel more of a starter?

I mean if he has his control together wouldn't he be better pitching 7-8 innings rather than 1? Stamina was never an issue with him, it was his control. Also I don't know that I would trust him to come on with men on base. If he can hold it together for one inning with men on base, why can't he hold it together for another 7 innings?
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Postby StlSluggers » Wed Dec 08, 2004 11:59 am

The issue with Ankiel is that you can't risk a starter spot on him. What you do is start five proven starters and put Ankiel in the pen. Then, using the same logic you just cited, if he proves that he can hold it together, and if one of our starters isn't performing, then you move him up. However, I still think that the most reasonable expectation for Ankiel this year is going to be as a lefty out of the pen and in long relief and spot starting roles. I wholly believe that he will be a starter in '06.
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Postby j_d_mcnugent » Wed Dec 08, 2004 1:26 pm

i would feel more comfortable with ankiel starting in pen. it just seems like the safest thing to do. in addition to the other reasons mention he is coming off of surgery and doesnt have too many innings the last couple of years.

i think the nomar signing helps us out. the cubs were probably the leading competition to sign him. publicly boston is saying they dont want to sign a shortstop to a long term contract so they can have room to bring up their prospect in 2006. angels supposedly like cabrera more than edgar. there are probably other teams interested but it definitely knocks out one edgars bargaining chips. he cant demand more money or else run off to the cubbies.
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Postby SaintsOfTheDiamond » Wed Dec 08, 2004 2:38 pm

I agree with Sluggers about Ankiel. Start him off in the pen -- less pressure there IMO -- and if he proves he can handle that give him some spot starts in hopes of working him into the rotation in '06. ;-D

j_d_mcnugent wrote:there are probably other teams interested but it definitely knocks out one edgars bargaining chips. he cant demand more money or else run off to the cubbies.

That's what I was thinking. There aren't too many teams really interested in a SS at all, Renteria, or committing to a multi-year deal. Hopefully this will push him back into the $7-$8 million range at the most, and a 4-6 year range would be reasonable to me.
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