St. Louis Cardinals Best/Worst Case 2016: Shortstops

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Aug 27, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; St. Louis Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta reacts against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 27, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; St. Louis Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta reacts against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Diaz and others can’t get it done, Peralta returns too soon, fails to produce like he has in the past

Our worst-case scenario is, of course, that nightmare outlook that I’m sure many felt when the Peralta knows broke. Memories of Pete Kozma immediately come to mind, no offense to Pete. What will an already suspect offense look like without it’s power-hitting shortstop?

Diaz looked great today, and he’s been pretty solid so far this spring, but can we really expect him to step into the most competitive division in baseball and lead the defense at shortstop for an extended chunk of the season?

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Gyorko is the man most capable of replicating what Peralta brought to the club, but there are no guarantees as to what the Cardinals will get from him. Plus, his services are going to be needed around the infield, not just at shortstop.

I appreciate Greg Garcia for what his time with St. Louis, but his offensive limitations hold him back from having much shot at an every day job.

Worst case, Diaz makes the club out of camp and then struggles mightily during the regular season. The hit to his confidence is so great that he is never to be seen with the big club again.

With that, Gyorko struggles with the strikeout all season. Feeling pressed in the heated NL Central race, the Cards push Peralta back before he is ready.

Pushing Peralta back either results in him re-injuring the thumb or just lacking the strength with the bat to be the same run producer that he’s been in the past.

Next: Has Jamaal Charles Lost a Step?

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