St. Louis Cardinals: Rays Scouting Luke Weaver?

michaeldavidmiles
Mar 4, 2016; Kissimmee, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Luke Weaver (83) pitches against the Houston Astros during the fifth inning at Osceola County Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 4, 2016; Kissimmee, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Luke Weaver (83) pitches against the Houston Astros during the fifth inning at Osceola County Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

Prior to Thursday night’s game in Springfield, it was reported that the Tampa Rays had sent scouts to the game to scout Luke Weaver in response to rumors that the St. Louis Cardinals hold interest in someone in the Rays pen.

Luke Weaver, one of the most promising arms in the St. Louis Cardinals system, made another stellar start for the Springfield Cardinals on Thursday night.  Caught somewhere in the wake of this outstanding start were rumors of interest shared between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Tampa Rays.

When news of this first hit, our writers convened and started bouncing names of interest within the Rays organization to answer the question, “who might the St. Louis Cardinals have interest in within the pen of the Rays?”  This article will explore these bounced names.

Before we dive into this discussion, I wanted to share with you the tweet that started the bubbling:

Let me say this before diving into the look at the names we examined, I never fully believe anything anyone in baseball reports for many reasons.  The chief most reason for my distrust is my belief that no one in baseball will ever tip their cap and show their hand.  To this note, which I will discuss at the end of this post, I don’t believe that Weaver was the target of scouting (at least not alone).

To the names… First up, a return to the idea of the St. Louis Cardinals re-igniting their interest in Jake Odorizzi (free agent after season).  I recently wrote about this (can be found here) but these are his stats to-date:

YearAgeTmWLERAGIPHRERHRBBSOWHIP
201626TBR454.1021118.2111555418351101.230
5 Yrs24293.8589493.0452216211601524601.225

The second name that we writers tossed around was Evan Longoria (signed through 2022).  This name came about with thoughts that it would be foolish for the St. Louis Cardinals to entertain any trade of promising Weaver without landing an impact player.  These are Longoria’s stats this season:

YearAgeTmGABRH2B3BHRRBISOBAOBPSLGOPS
201630TBR9839152114262235791.292.340.545.884
9 Yrs121745956801252287152287651058.272.347.490.837

The next name we batted around was Chris Archer (signed through 2019).  In talking about Archer or Odorizzi, we must also examine who might be replaced in the rotation.  To that tune, the St. Louis Cardinals could carry an extra arm until the end of the season, could see a phantom injury fall, or could cut bait (or wait for Jaime Garcia to not renew at season’s end).

Before showing his stats, we must also note that Archer had been linked in the recent past to the Dodgers but our own Drew Clark noted that this “train has slowed.”  Does this mean the St. Louis Cardinals can step in and grab him?  You tell me.  Archer’s stats:

YearAgeTmWLERAGIPHRERHRBBSOWHIP
201627TBR5144.4222130.1125736421511551.350
5 Yrs37463.54117695.0607309273702407171.219
162 Game Avg.11133.5434204178918021702101.219

At this point our writers were struck with fear of what might have to be offered from the St. Louis Cardinals to Tampa to land someone like Archer or Longoria.  Some feared that Weaver plus two hitting prospects such as Oscar Mercado or Magneuris Sierra would be a deal necessary to land a name of the caliber of Archer or Longoria.

None of us wish to shed Sierra or Weaver (can’t say the same for Mercado– yet).

More from St Louis Cardinals Rumors

If the St. Louis Cardinals are interested in only a reliever, our chief editor, Steven McNeil, suggests that the organization should offer Corey Litrell or Ronnie Williams.  These were offered if the goal from Tampa was a relief arm only.

So… enter my conspiracy theory mind and my distrust of the report that Weaver was the target of interest from/by the scouts present.  I find it too convenient that Brandon Moss is rehabbing and started at first base tonight for Springfield.

I find it terribly lucky that the Rays were able to watch this MLB-ready player who may have exhausted his time with the St. Louis Cardinals.

I find it horridly fog-of-war-generating that the scout so readily and easily pinned Weaver as the target.  And, no, I don’t buy it.  I do buy it, however, that the scouts could well be watching Weaver AND Moss AND potentially others.  I do buy it that the St. Louis Cardinals could hold interest in Odorizzi, Archer, Longoria, etc.

I even buy it that the St. Louis Cardinals might hold interest in a pen arm like Kevin Jepsen (free agent after 2016) who holds a 1.93 ERA in 4.2 innings over the past seven games.  I even buy it that the St. Louis Cardinals could hold interest in an arm like Erasmo Ramierz (free agent after 2016) who holds a 1.08 ERA in 8.1 innings over the past seven games.

But I’d like to see the names above tied to a bat of influence like a Longoria or even- wishes willing- a bat and second baseman Logan Forsythe (signed through 2017).  Would you give Kolten Wong for a Forsythe?  I would.

Next: Late Offense Wins

While we batted these names around, the St. Louis Cardinals managed to pull themselves square with the Miami Marlins in the Wild Card race with their 5-4 win tonight.  It is great when the Birds win, isn’t it?  Let me know what you think of these names and whether the Cards should bite.

facebooktwitterreddit