St. Louis Cardinals: Josh Donaldson or Manny Machado

BOSTON, MA - SEPTEMBER 26: Josh Donaldson
BOSTON, MA - SEPTEMBER 26: Josh Donaldson /

The St. Louis Cardinals have been rumored and linked to two prominent third basemen but who is actually a better fit for the Cards?

The St. Louis Cardinals are potential suitors for Josh Donaldson and Manny Machado. Well, potential isn’t the right word here– they ARE suitors for both of these power third basemen. Both bring power, both bring defense, and both have similar timelines. Who is the better fit?

Our own Josh McDonald wrote today about Manny Machado and his probable fit with the St. Louis Cardinals. If you missed it, jump here. In this piece he denotes the exorbitant cost and the risk that Machado will flea for some high-paying east coast team.

Josh Donaldson has also been a favored name around the St. Louis Cardinals. Just look at the number of times we have written about him here at Redbird Rants!

The real question facing these two names- two names who have only one year remaining on their current deals- is who will sign then jump and who will sign and then extend.

As Nightengale suggests above, Donaldson is more likely to sign an extension and stay with the St. Louis Cardinals over Machado. Is this a fair assumption? Before we dig into that, let me examine the two players side by side.

First, Machado:

Standard Batting
6 Yrs7643365308843886217691384063922226565.279.329.476.80511614708213142416
162 Game Avg.1627146559318337229868548120.279.329.476.805116312173353

Now Donaldson:

Standard Batting
7 Yrs8313598310552686017912174528326426676.277.368.510.8781381585743652614
162 Game Avg.162701605103168352341036183132.277.368.510.878138309147153
OAK (4 yrs)4051691149321740085563228173168313.268.347.458.80512568437181117
TOR (3 yrs)42619071612309460947111300153258363.285.387.559.94615090137184157

While the numbers show similarities, we must also admit that Machado will turn 26 during the 2018 campaign while Donaldson is the senior in this ordeal at 32 years of age.

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That said, and to Nightengale’s point, Donaldson would be easier to lock up in an extension due to age and injury past where Machado will command more on the open market. Would the St. Louis Cardinals want to extend Donaldson?

If it were up to me, I would be okay with a Donaldson extension so long as it wasn’t for more than 3-5 years. It seems that if it were up to the Orioles, based on information released today, they want a significant amount to trade away the final year of Machado’s contract.

Noting these things, I think the St. Louis Cardinals would be wise to make a decent offer to Donaldson and then move on. I don’t want to see the Cards wait around like they did for Stanton just to land or not land Donaldson; not especially when they have the likes of Jedd Gyorko on the squad already.

Next: Winter is coming, how to win

Is it unlikely? Maybe. Do you think it could happen? Let me know your thoughts on Twitter and thanks for ready!