Cardinals Rumors: St. Louis not prioritizing shortstop upgrades
The St. Louis Cardinals are not prioritizing shortstop upgrades, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak says.
In publicly supporting Paul DeJong, and reiterating their belief in the 28-year-old, the St. Louis Cardinals have made it clear that they are comfortable having him once again be the Opening Day shortstop. And it appears that their actions back up their words.
In speaking to reporters, Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak said (via Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch) that shortstop “has not been a focus for us” to this point.
The sticking point, at least for now, has been price points. Carlos Correa and Corey Seager are going to land deals well out of the Cardinals’ comfort zone. Same with Marcus Semien. Trevor Story, who has long been rumored to be a potential target, is likely going to get a lucrative multi-year deal despite coming off the worst season of his career. Javier Baez has always felt like an unlikely target, and some people believe that he is going to return to the New York Mets.
“There is a lot of talent out there. There are also price points,” Mozeliak said, adding that they are primarily a team who likes to promote from within.
The Cardinals have internal options at shortstop, starting with DeJong. They also have Tommy Edman, who can slide to shortstop when Nolan Gorman is promoted, with Gorman sliding in at second base. And adding any of the above shortstops is going to either 1) block Gorman from major-league playing time or 2) leave Edman, a Gold Glove-winning second baseman, without a starting position and as a utility player off the bench.
That’s not something the Cardinals want, and they have made it clear in their answers and actions to start this offseason. Perhaps their thinking changes if one of the shortstops (Story?) decides to accept a one-year deal, which would maximize their World Series chances and not block Gorman or Edman. But such a thought feels increasingly unlikely, especially with Mozeliak saying that their everyday position players are “set.”
All hope is not lost on adding an elite shortstop, but the bulk of the Cardinals’ money will go toward upgrading the rotation and bullpen.