St. Louis Cardinals: Cards vs. Cubs Bullpen
Today we take a look at the bullpen for the St. Louis Cardinals and the Chicago Cubs. Which teams has the advantage going into the season?
The St. Louis Cardinals and the Chicago Cubs enter the 2017 season with the strongest bullpens in the Central Division. Both teams have made major moves to bolster the bullpen in different ways. Do any of these moves put the other team on top?
The Chicago Cubs boosted the back end of the bullpen by acquiring closer, Wade Davis, from the Kansas City Royals for outfielder Jorge Soler. A week after acquiring Davis, the Cubs signed Koji Uehara for more depth.
The St. Louis Cardinals, however, made a different move to bolster their bullpen. The Cardinals acquired left-hander Brett Cecil via free agency. The move gives the Cardinals bullpen flexibility when it comes to Cecil and Kevin Siegrist.
If there is any concern right now, it would be if the Cardinals lack the depth in bullpen because of injuries. Remember, the spot in the bullpen could be filled by the loser of the Michael Wacha and Alex Reyes competition for the final spot in the rotation.
Another way to increase depth is to go out an get someone either via trade or free agency. But, who is out there right now? One name that has surfaced recently is Javier Lopez.
Neel Kale, from Cardsblog.com, suggested that Lopez could add some depth to the St. Louis Cardinals bullpen for a relatively low cost. He is another left handed pitcher, but his age and recent performance have put into question.
While it might be cost effective, I don’t think the Cardinals are looking to acquire a thirty-nine year old left-hander at this point. The Cardinals have solid depth in terms of left handers out of the bullpen with Cecil and Siegrist. Once Lyons returns from injury, he will anchor them as well.
By the time Spring Training comes around, I don’t expect either team to make any major moves to bolster the bullpen further. Let’s take a look at the depth chart for each team.
Wade Davis (CL), Hector Rondon, Pedro Strop, Carl Edwards Jr., Justin Grimm, Koji Uehara, Brian Duensing, and Caleb Smith.
St. Louis Cardinals:
Seung-Hwan Oh (CL), Kevin Siegrist, Trevor Rosenthal, Jonathan Broxton, Brett Cecil, Matt Bowman, Tyler Lyons*, and Zach Duke**
*will return during the 2017 season; **out for the 2017 season