Jun 29, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals right fielder Allen Craig (21) reacts to striking out with two runners on base against the Dodgers Clayton Keshawn in the at Dodger Stadium. Image Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Should the St. Louis Cardinals bench or trade Allen Craig?

The biggest question surrounding the St. Louis Cardinals is not as much the promotion of Oscar Taveras in as much as what happens with Allen Craig.

Craig has had a trying year during the 2014 campaign. He’s not producing at the levels in which he needs to be producing.

Craig’s AVG/OBP/SLG numbers this season are as follows:
March – .000/.000/.000
April – .229/.287/.381
May – .291/.354/.427
June – .255/.286/.311
2014 – .255/.305/.368

Craig only had six extra base hits during the entire month of June, none of which were a home run. His ten RBI in June were on par with the 11 runs driven in in April, rather than the 19 runs knocked in in May.

Fans were hopeful with Craig heating up in May but he regressed during the month of June. I was, too. I thought it would carry over into June. For all of the offseason talk that the Cardinals should trade Matt Adams for a shortstop, I’m glad that they didn’t because Adams is performing while Craig isn’t.

I’m finding myself in agreement with Viva El Birdos’ Ben Humphrey, who wrote this morning that Craig should be benched in favor of Taveras. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny

Bernie Miklasz opines that Taveras must play and stay. Bernie even invokes the feelings factor when it comes to veteran players. I’m sorry but if veterans aren’t performing at the level where they should be, why is Taveras held to a higher standard for production. Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, Brooks Robinson, and Mike Schmidt are all in the Hall of Fame. Like Bernie writes, they didn’t have the red-hot starts seen in players like Yasiel Puig or Gregory Polanco of late.

If the Cardinals aren’t able to find the at-bats for Taveras, the best hitting prospect in the organization since Albert Pujols, somebody has to be traded to make the room. The best bet appears to be Allen Craig. I wish things could have worked out better but he’s regressed from his form of the last two seasons.

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Tags: Allen Craig Oscar Taveras St Louis Cardinals

  • Alex Rodman

    They should trade Craig.

  • Greg Spaulding

    I’ve been saying this for months. Really it worked the way it needed to because even if Craig was putting up good numbers Taveras was coming and I so we knew that going forward either this season or next Adams or Craig had to be moved. And Adams makes more sense to keep with his age, the fact that first is his natural position, and that he adds versatility to a lineup with not a lot of punch. Craig, Holliday, Molina and Peralta are all similar type hitters. Station to station types that have some power and hit for a good average. Good hitters but aren’t going to carry an offense for short stretches. Adams has the ability to change games and series with his power. Taveras and Adams just have too much potential. Now there’s no guarantee we move Craig. He may get refreshed coming off the bench and it gives us a real threat off the bench. But in Mozeliak’s eyes if Taveras doesn’t play enough and Matheny continues to give Craig more at bats I think Mozeliak will move him. American league teams would be interested with the numbers he’s put up in the past and his ability to play first and right field. He also fits the role of a dh.

    • Tulsa Terry

      Adams actually has trade value and makes room for Holliday transition to first.

  • Carl

    You all are crazy. A guy falls off his norms for a half a season and you want to trade him?
    He still leads the team in RBI’s!! Until someone overtakes him, he should be given a chance to get on track. The whole team should be traded based on your reasoning.

    • Kyle

      Thank you. The worst are the folks on Twitter saying all of this crap.

    • Greg Spaulding

      Your right the entire offense has been pathetic. Its not just Craig, its Holliday, Molina, Carpenter, and others. Everyone’s numbers are down from last season. Of course for all of us to expect them to put up the same numbers they did last season is unrealistic, specifically Carpenter who was other worldly. But the fact is we have a young phenom ready to play everyday and although he hasn’t shown it just yet at the major league level he can help our offense. And the position he plays happens to be Craig’s position. No way to get around that. You can’t wait forever to make a change or the season will be lost. And going forward there’re three players for two positions. If the Cardinals believe in Adams and Taveras going forward and they should especially with what Adams supplies our lineup that no other player in our lineup gives us than change is needed.

  • Alex Rodman

    Yeah. I think Adams overtook him. Or yadi.

  • DennisMets

    I would love to send a package of Craig, wong , jay and Mattinez to Tampa for Longoria and Price

    • redmeansgo82

      Why would the Rays want a decently expensive 30 year old player who can no longer hit? And more importantly, why would they want that player in a trade for the best starting pitcher available in the trade market? I keep seeing people drop Craig’s name in Price trade propositions, but it just doesn’t make any sense why they would take him. The Rays will want high profile, cost-controlled prospects for David Price. A lot of them. They will not want Allen Craig.

  • Drifty

    Is this a deja vu of David Freese?

  • credto

    I have followed both players closely and they both deserve to play on this roster. But they need to not push Taveras into the majors until he can dominate at the plate . They keep comparing him to Pujols and he will never be another Pujols …NEVER EVER.
    Pujols wasn’t even expect to make the team during the 2001 Spring Training, hell Pujols was drafted in the 13th round.