St. Louis Cardinals: Alex Colome contract amount appeals
The St. Louis Cardinals have been rumored to have interest in the Tampa closer who avoided arbitration today. His accepted contract amount makes him very appealing for the Cardinals.
The St. Louis Cardinals avoided arbitration today with all of their remaining players. This means that Marcell Ozuna, Michael Wacha, Randal Grichuk, and Tyler Lyons all avoided arbitration and received one-year contracts. The amounts of these were $9M, $5.3M, $2.6M, and $1.2M respectively.
Simultaneously, the Tampa Rays avoided arbitration with their closer, Alex Colome. Colome, supposedly on the trade block and certainly of interest to many teams, received a $5.3M contract. Does that number ring any bells?
Before I dive into conspiracy theories, let just admit right out of the gate that $5.3M is a relative steal in the closing market. In light of Wade Davis signing a three-year, $52M contract with the Rockies ($17.2M AAV), Colome making some $11.5M less in 2018 is a definite steal.
Now, back to my conspiracy theory: I find it very convenient that Michael Wacha is set to make $5.3M as well as Alex Colome; does this mean that a trade is coming? Look, I know that the teams had no idea of the amount that each was giving or not giving to their arbitration players (most likely), but what if they did know?
What if Tampa had followed social media accounts and read of the release of Wacha’s contract, have interest in Wacha, and signed Colome to the exact figure to assist with a trade wherein Wacha goes to Tampa and Colome goes to the Cardinals.
But wait, that wouldn’t be a great deal for the St. Louis Cardinals since they would be losing a starting pitcher just in order to snag one of the closers in whom they shown interest.
Now, if Tampa would toss in the likes of Chris Archer (to replace Wacha), and the St. Louis Cardinals were willing to toss in Grichuk and perhaps someone like Dakota Hudson, then the Cards would feed their needs while Tampa would pick up less expensive players and young prospects to accelerate their rebuild.
These would be the finances:
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- STL loses Grichuk, Wacha, and Hudson [-$2.6M, -$5.3M, -approx $400k; total: -$8.3M].
- STL gains Archer and Colome [+$14M (’18-’19), +$5.3M; total: +$19.4M (+$11.7M in 2018)].
- STL balance would be an increase of only $3.4M for 2018 while replacing Wacha with Archer and picking up a closer for 2018.
- TAMPA loses Archer and Colome [-$14M (’18-’19), -$5.3M; total: -$19.4M (-$11.7M in 2018)].
- TAMPA gains Grichuk, Wacha, and Hudson [+$2.6M, +$5.3M, +approx $400k; total: +$8.3M].
- TAMPA balance would be a decrease of $3.4M while picking up three players.
Financially speaking, this makes a lot of sense for the Rays. In terms of winning in 2018 for the St. Louis Cardinals, this also makes a lot of sense– if only to me.
Time will tell if this sort of deal is done and/or if the coincidental $5.3M figure of arbitration avoidance for Wacha and Colome is purely coincidence or a piece of pre-trade genius from a GM in the business of baseball.
Next: What to do with bench spots
Would you make this deal? Is this move enough to make the St. Louis Cardinals feared in the NL-Central in 2018? Let me know your thoughts on Twitter and thanks for reading!