St. Louis Cardinals: Three targets necessary to win the winter

michaeldavidmiles
BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 24: Chris Archer
BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 24: Chris Archer /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 4
Next
St. Louis Cardinals
PITTSBURGH, PA – SEPTEMBER 27: Manny Machado /

The St. Louis Cardinals need a big bat. Period.

All winter the talk has been about the St. Louis Cardinals and their pursuit of a big bat. This needs to happen. The Cardinals were daring and committed enough to bet the farm (as it were) on the Giancarlo Stanton sweepstakes. This didn’t pan out in the Birds’ favor but showed a commitment to finding that big bat.

Enter then the rumors of the Cardinals and fellow Marlins Marcell Ozuna and Christian Yelich. And lest I forget, the St. Louis Cardinals have also now been linked to having potential interest in Manny Machado. Time to dig.

Ozuna is definitely a big bat and was certainly one in 2017. Yelich, on the other hand, is more of a consistent player. Both names are interesting so let’s just post up their charts.

First, the left-handed batting Yelich:

Standard Batting
Year Age Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2013 21 MIA NL 62 273 240 34 69 12 1 4 16 10 0 31 66 .288 .370 .396 .766 112 95 4 1 0 1 1 7/8
2014 22 MIA NL 144 660 582 94 165 30 6 9 54 21 7 70 137 .284 .362 .402 .764 115 234 9 3 3 2 3 *78 GG
2015 23 MIA NL 126 525 476 63 143 30 2 7 44 16 5 47 101 .300 .366 .416 .782 118 198 13 2 0 0 2 *78
2016 24 MIA NL 155 659 578 78 172 38 3 21 98 9 4 72 138 .298 .376 .483 .859 135 279 20 4 0 5 4 *78/D MVP-19,SS
2017 25 MIA NL 156 695 602 100 170 36 2 18 81 16 2 80 137 .282 .369 .439 .807 117 264 13 6 0 6 4 *8
5 Yrs 643 2812 2478 369 719 146 14 59 293 72 18 300 579 .290 .369 .432 .800 120 1070 59 16 3 14 14
162 Game Avg. 162 708 624 93 181 37 4 15 74 18 5 76 146 .290 .369 .432 .800 120 270 15 4 1 4 4

And now Ozuna:

Standard Batting
Year Age Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2013 22 MIA NL 70 291 275 31 73 17 4 3 32 5 1 13 57 .265 .303 .389 .693 90 107 6 2 1 0 0 98
2014 23 MIA NL 153 612 565 72 152 26 5 23 85 3 1 41 164 .269 .317 .455 .772 114 257 12 1 0 5 1 *87/9
2015 24 MIA NL 123 494 459 47 119 27 0 10 44 2 3 30 110 .259 .308 .383 .691 92 176 10 3 0 2 1 *89
2016 25 MIA NL 148 608 557 75 148 23 6 23 76 0 3 43 115 .266 .321 .452 .773 110 252 11 4 0 4 2 *87/9 AS
2017 26 MIA NL 159 679 613 93 191 30 2 37 124 1 3 64 144 .312 .376 .548 .924 145 336 18 0 0 2 4 *7/8D9 AS,MVP-15,GG,SS
5 Yrs 653 2684 2469 318 683 123 17 96 361 11 11 191 590 .277 .329 .457 .786 114 1128 57 10 1 13 8
162 Game Avg. 162 666 613 79 169 31 4 24 90 3 3 47 146 .277 .329 .457 .786 114 280 14 2 0 3 2

Notice the power difference but also notice the consistency factor. The question facing the Cardinals is whether Yelich and his .432 SLG but rather consistent .290 batting average will impact the lineup in the way that Ozuna’s .457 (.548 in ’17) might?

But wait… Enter then the supposition that the St. Louis Cardinals should dive into the Machado campaign. For compaison sake, let’s look at Machado’s chart:

Standard Batting
Year Age Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB Pos Awards
2012 19 BAL AL 51 202 191 24 50 8 3 7 26 2 0 9 38 .262 .294 .445 .739 98 85 6 0 1 1 0 5
2013 20 BAL AL 156 710 667 88 189 51 3 14 71 6 7 29 113 .283 .314 .432 .746 102 288 15 2 9 3 0 *5 AS,MVP-9,GG
2014 21 BAL AL 82 354 327 38 91 14 0 12 32 2 0 20 68 .278 .324 .431 .755 110 141 13 3 2 2 2 5
2015 22 BAL AL 162 713 633 102 181 30 1 35 86 20 8 70 111 .286 .359 .502 .861 132 318 17 4 2 4 2 *5/6 AS,MVP-4,GG
2016 23 BAL AL 157 696 640 105 188 40 1 37 96 0 3 48 120 .294 .343 .533 .876 130 341 14 3 0 5 9 *56 AS,MVP-5
2017 24 BAL AL 156 690 630 81 163 33 1 33 95 9 4 50 115 .259 .310 .471 .782 107 297 17 1 0 9 3 *5
6 Yrs 764 3365 3088 438 862 176 9 138 406 39 22 226 565 .279 .329 .476 .805 116 1470 82 13 14 24 16
162 Game Avg. 162 714 655 93 183 37 2 29 86 8 5 48 120 .279 .329 .476 .805 116 312 17 3 3 5 3

Wow, right? Hang on… Should the Cardinals take Machado with his career .476 SLG over Ozuna’s career .457 SLG?

More from Redbird Rants

Let me say that I would love to have Manny Machado in a Cardinals uniform but if we look at numbers alone, I’m not sold that his SLG, which seems to be in a minor decline (could fare better in the NL admittedly), stacks up well against the rising Ozuna. Having said that, Ozuna is an unproven commodity in terms of his slugging. In other words, we aren’t sure yet if 2017 was a fluke.

Should we even think about financials? Nope. The St. Louis Cardinals had the money to throw at Stanton, they have the money to make any of these deals happen. The real question is the prospect load it may or may not take.

If I were the St. Louis Cardinals, I would immediately contact the Orioles and find out what it would take to land Machado. I would do this simultaneously while building the deal with the Rays for Archer/Colome so that I know what prospects are going where. But I would make these deals happen first and then I would turn my attention to Ozuna if necessary.

Next: Close to Colome?

So here’s the wrap: the St. Louis Cardinals need to find a closer, a starting pitcher, and a big bat in order to win the winter. If they leave with two of these three, then the focus of spring training must be on whether Tyler O’Neill is your big bat or if you need to go get someone before the real contests begin. Thanks for reading!

facebooktwitterreddit