Sonny Gray, Right-Handed Starter, Oakland
I have some pretty mixed feelings when I think about the scenario that would probably have to play out for the Cardinals to make a move for the 26-year-old Oakland ace.
The only way I see it, the club would pretty much have to determine that Waino’s window has closed as an impact starting arm for the team that he’s been instrumental to for the past decade.
That would be the sad part.
The neat part would be the prospects of picking up a 26-year-old stud who could step in alongside Martinez, Wacha, and one day (hopefully soon) Alex Reyes.
Now, Gray is the only one on this list that isn’t a to-be free agent at season’s end. In fact, he won’t be eligible for free agency until 2020.
This means a couple of different things.
First, that means that he is going to be way more expensive to pick up. He’s the future of that Oakland organization as much as anybody they’ve got, and with their payroll limitations, I have to imagine that they are going to be very stingy with any possibility of giving Gray up.
But, if you can work a deal for him, that means that you get three guaranteed years of his services before having to make a decision in his aged-29 season.
Adding Gray would mean solidifying the starting rotation for the foreseeable future, when you consider what that unit would look like.
I mean, look at what the guy has done so far in his early 20’s. Even pitching for a terrible Oakland squad last year, he still nearly won the AL Cy Young, finishing third behind Dallas Kuechel and David Price.
Gray just feels like a guy that would have a ton of success working with Yadier Molina in St. Louis. The price would be steep, but if managed properly, could mean adding an ace for at least the next three years at a relative bargain of a price, at least in terms of his annual salary.
So, what do you think, Cardinal fans? Have I gone completely bonkers here?
Who’d I miss? Who am I dead wrong about here?
Let me know what you think about my list in the comments or, as always, feel free to shoot me 140 characters of wisdom on twitter!