St. Louis Cardinals: Cards need to trade for SS Jose Iglesias

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 19: Miguel Sano #22 of the Minnesota Twins slides safely into second base as Jose Iglesias #1 of the Detroit Tigers fields the ball during the eighth inning of the game on August 19, 2018 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Twins defeated the Tigers 5-4. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 19: Miguel Sano #22 of the Minnesota Twins slides safely into second base as Jose Iglesias #1 of the Detroit Tigers fields the ball during the eighth inning of the game on August 19, 2018 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Twins defeated the Tigers 5-4. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Tigers’ shortstop Jose Iglesias has cleared trade waivers and is now eligible to be traded to any team. Do the St. Louis Cardinals need the ‘slick’ fielding Iglesias to shore up its bench and late inning defense?

The St. Louis Cardinals have unexpectedly found themselves in the middle of a playoff race.  Going into the series vs the Colorado Rockies, the Cards were one of five teams in the run for a NL Wildcard spot.  At the same time they closed the gap in the race with Chicago Cubs for the NL Central title, being only three games out with 34 games remaining in the regular season.

The question becomes, what do the St. Louis Cardinals need to do to enhance their playoff run?  One could look at the infield bench and wonder if there are better options are available than Greg Garcia or Yairo Munoz in backing up Paul DeJong at shortstop.

Detroit Tigers shortstop Jose Iglesias has cleared trade waivers and now can be traded to any team. Let’s look at whether the 28-year old right-handed Iglesias can help the St. Louis Cardinals in their pursuit of a postseason spot.

It’s important to point out, that while trades can be made at any point during August and September after a player clears waivers, there’s a bit of catch.  A player must be on the team’s 40 man roster before the 11:59 pm ET on August 31 to be eligible for the postseason roster.

Jose Iglesias, a significant upgrade

Iglesias is considered to have exceptional defensive abilities, but only average abilities with the bat.  Defensively, he has a seven season Rtot of 8, Rdrs of 11, 4.23 RF/9, and a RF/G of 3.96.  In 2018, those numbers are 9, 0, 4.0 and 3.96.  Offensively, Iglesias has a 2018 slash line of .267/.310/.389 with 5 HR, 48 RBI, and 14 SB in 446 PA.

Defensively, current Cardinal options who are backing up Paul DeJong don’t come close to Iglesias. Greg Garcia, at shortstop, has a five-season Rtot of 2, Rdrs of 3, 3.90 RF/9, and a RF/G of 2.96.  In 2018, the 29 year-old Garcia has a Rtot of 1, Rdrs of -1, 3.90 RF/9, and a RF/G of 3.06 while playing short.  Meanwhile, Garcia has a 2018 slash line of .227/.314/.327 in 173 PA.

Yairo Munoz has only 2018 to compare with Iglesias and Garcia at shortstop.  In 38 games he has a Rtot of -3, Rdrs of -5, 3.66 RF/9, and a RF/G of 3.11.  He also has eight errors at the shortstop position, as many as Iglesias has in 116 games at short.

Munoz does outshine both Iglesias and Garcia offensively.  The 23-year-old has a slash line of .283/.346/.425 with 6 HR and 31 RBI in 234 PA.

Currently, Jose Iglesias is on a one-year $6.28-million contract and will be a free agent at the end of the season.

Paul DeJong vs Jose Iglesias

The next question the St. Louis Cardinals must consider is whether Jose Iglesias could be an improvement over Paul DeJong as a late innings replacement.  The short answer is…maybe.

Paul DeJong has only played 168 games at shortstop over two years vs Iglesias’ 607 games over seven years.  So comparison’s may not be fair to either player.

Nevertheless, DeJong’s stats thus far compare favorably to Iglesias.  DeJong has a two-year Rtot of 8, a Rdrs of 9, a RF/9 of 4.10, and a RF/G of 4.00.  However, DeJong committed eight errors in 86 games in 2017, and eight errors, so far, in 82 games in 2018.  Iglesias has only committed 36 errors in his 607 games at short.

Comparing both, Iglesias appears to be the better defensive player.

Can Jose Iglesias help the Cards in their late season run?

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Jose Iglesias would be a clear improvement defensively over Greg Garcia and Yairo Munoz.  He also would likely be a defensive improvement over Paul DeJong.  However, Iglesias  does not have the offensive capability of DeJong or Munoz.  Although, DeJong has struggled some this year at the plate, Iglesias does not have his power potential.

Nonetheless, he could help the St. Louis Cardinals as a late-inning replacement for DeJong or Munoz.  Bringing on Jose Iglesias could help the St. Louis Cardinals in their late-season run for a playoff spot.  A run saved here and there could make a difference in whether the Cards make the postseason or not.

I’m not advocating he should replace Paul DeJong.  DeJong should be the everyday shortstop for the St. Louis Cardinals.  But I do say the Cards should bring Jose Iglesias on as another defensive option.  So make a deal and try bring Jose Iglesias before the August 31 deadline.

What do you think?  Should the St. Louis Cardinals make a trade for Jose Iglesias?  Do you believe he can help in the September run for the postseason?  Let us know.

Next. September call-ups. dark

Thanks for reading…and Go Cards.