St. Louis Cardinals: Releases of Peralta, Sandoval by Red Sox give the Cards an opportunity
After just releasing former St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Jhonny Peralta, the Boston Red Sox have cut ties with their other veteran third baseman in Pablo Sandoval. This could provide the perfect opportunity for the Cardinals to pull the trigger in a significant move.
On the present major league roster, the Red Sox have left themselves with next to no depth at the third base position. Currently, they have only two major league players listed at third base on the depth chart with just over 200 at-bats between the two of them. The St. Louis Cardinals should think of the Red Sox…
While one of those players is touted prospect Tzu-Wei Lin and the Sox have Rafael Devers in their farm system, neither of them are going to be the everyday third baseman the Red Sox are looking for this season, as Devers will just be getting his chance in Triple-A and Lin is still young, coming off of a .223/.287/.291 season in 2016 in Double-A.
It has been a rather bumpy ride for Boston at the third base position over the last few seasons. Coming off of a 2014 World Series win where Pablo Sandoval slashed .429/.467/.536, the Red Sox rewarded Sandoval with a five-year, $95 million deal in hopes that he could stay healthy and build momentum off his postseason run.
Neither of those things came to pass, as Sandoval missed 159 games in 2016 due to injury and barely played a season’s worth of games in 3 years for the Red Sox and, and slashed a forgettable .237/.286/.354 with 14 home runs and 59 RBI’s in the games he did play.
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A chunk of guaranteed money was all that kept Sandoval in the clubhouse at Fenway, but the heat of competition in the AL East pennant race combined with the desperate need for third base help finally brought Red Sox GM John Farrell to cut Sandoval and about $49 million in remaining guarantees from the contract.
Obviously, this was an ultimatum for the Red Sox, as there have been attempts to improve third base without releasing Sandoval over the course of the year, the most notable being the signing of third baseman Jhonny Peralta, who the St. Louis Cardinals released on June 13. He was given a minor league deal with the expectation that he will make the majors.
Instead, he struggled with the Pawtucket Sox, the team’s Triple-A affiliate, hitting .237 with two homers and seven RBI in 16 games. Obviously, this wasn’t good enough for Red Sox management, and that plan was scrapped, as Peralta was released exactly a month after the St. Louis Cardinals had released him.
With all that said, the Cardinals have the infield depth to trade pieces of it in order to fill more pressing needs. The St. Louis Cardinals have several players on the roster who can play third.
Whether they need an established veteran who can finish the season everyday, or someone who can rotate with the other third basemen and remain flexible with the infield, the Cardinals have pieces that fit for Boston.
Whether this opens the door for new opportunities for guys like Greg Garcia or Aledmys Diaz to find a chance at major league success or a more significant trade occurs is still to be seen, if the Cardinals make moves at all. But if they are going to jump, now would be a perfect opportunity.
For more on this, check out Dr. Miles’ rumor piece to follow this article.
Next: Kolten and Kevin will boost post-break Birds
Should the St. Louis Cardinals sell to the Sox? Should the Cardinals ask for prospects or maybe an arm from the pen? Stay with us for up-to-date information about anything that might transpire.