St. Louis Cardinals: Redbird Roundup Week 4

Cardinals OF Lars Nootbaar
Cardinals OF Lars Nootbaar / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

This is the fourth edition of the Redbird Roundup: a weekly St. Louis Cardinals notebook, check-in, and your one-stop shop for important transactions, movement in standings, player trends, and more.

  1. Week 4 Game Results (2-4 in the week, 9-13 overall)
  2. Cardinals Week 4 MVP: Willson Contreras
  3. NL Central Standings
  4. Division, Pennant, and World Series Odds (via FanDuel Sportsbook)
  5. Injuries and Transactions
  6. Prospect Watch
  7. Statistic Explanation: WAR (Wins Above Replacement)

Week 4 Game Results (2-4 in the week, 9-13 overall)

  • 4/17: St. Louis Cardinals 3 - Arizona Diamondbacks 6
  • 4/18: St. Louis Cardinals 7 - Arizona Diamondbacks 8
  • 4/19: St. Louis Cardinals 14 - Arizona Diamondbacks 5
  • 4/21: St. Louis Cardinals 2 - Seattle Mariners 5
  • 4/22: St. Louis Cardinals 4 - Seattle Mariners 5
  • 4/23: St. Louis Cardinals 7 - Seattle Mariners 3

Cardinals Week 4 MVP: Willson Contreras

After a painfully slow start to his time in St. Louis, perhaps this week will be the catalyst for Contreras. On Tuesday he blasted his first two Cardinal Home Runs against Arizona. He went 8 for 19 in the week and also drew 4 walks. Willson also *indirectly* ended Madison Bumgarner's time with the Diamondbacks and was ejected from Sunday's game after breaking his bat. Maybe a little bit of Contreras fire will be what this team needs to turn things around.

NL Central Standings

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates (16-7)
  2. Milwaukee Brewers (15-7)
  3. Chicago Cubs (12-9)
  4. St. Louis Cardinals (9-13)
  5. Cincinnati Reds (7-15)

Division, Pennant, and World Series Odds (via FanDuel Sportsbook)

To win NL Central: +230 ($100 wager wins $230)

To win NL Pennant: +1100 ($100 wager wins $1,100)

To win World Series: +2000 ($100 wager wins $2,000)

Injuries and Transactions

News: SS Paul DeJong was activated from the 10-day IL on Sunday. He appeared in his first game for the Cardinals going 3-4 with an RBI. The corresponding move was designating 2B Taylor Motter for assignment. RHP Andre Pallante was optioned to AAA Memphis as LHP JoJo Romero was called up.

Rehab: RHP Adam Wainwright completed a rehab start Wednesday for AA Springfield. Waino threw nearly 60 pitches over 3 innings of work, giving up a couple of home runs but issuing no walks.

10-day / 15-day IL: RHP Adam Wainwright, LHP Packy Naughton, RHP Wilking Rodriguez, C Tres Barrera, and INF Jose Fermin

Prospect Watch

  • RHP Michael McGreevy, the Cardinals' 1st Round Pick in 2021 got promoted to AAA Memphis this past weekend. Through three starts at AA Springfield McGreevy struck out 16 batters in 18.2 innings pitched allowing only 4 runs.
  • C Tres Barrera, who was competing with Andrew Knizner for the backup catching position posted a strong week for AAA Memphis. The 28-year-old backstop hit a pair of home runs this past week while driving in 9 over just 12 at-bats.
  • 1B Luken Baker has performed well in Memphis to start the year. The 26-year-old has hit 6 home runs and driven in 16 runs over 66 at-bats. To supplement this power, Baker also owns a .446 OBP.

Statistic Explanation: WAR (Wins Above Replacement)

Wins Above Replacement (WAR) is becoming more common to evaluate player performance not only during one season but also for an entire career. WAR can be easily understood as the following: how many marginal wins a player is worth above (or below) what a minor leaguer or available free agent at the same position could produce.

The idea of replacement-level production is crucial to understanding WAR. Two players could have identical production offensively, defensively, and running the bases but if they play different positions they will have different WAR values. This is because the replacement level production varies by position.

The formula for position player WAR is (The number of runs above average a player is worth in his batting, baserunning, and fielding + adjustment for position + adjustment for league + the number of runs provided by a replacement-level player) / runs per win. The formula for pitchers' WAR is slightly more complicated, as different metrics (RA9 and FIP) are used by different organizations.

The 2022 MLB Leaders for WAR fall very closely with League MVP voting. Check out the Top 5:

1. Aaron Judge (11.5 Total WAR) - American League MVP

2. Shohei Ohtani (3.8 Batting WAR + 5.6 Pitching WAR = 9.5 Total WAR) - 2nd in AL MVP Voting

3. Manny Machado (7.4 WAR) - 2nd in NL MVP Voting

4. Nolan Arenado (7.3 WAR) - 3rd in NL MVP Voting

T5. Paul Goldschmidt (7.1 WAR) - National League MVP

T5. Freddie Freeman (7.1 WAR) - 4th Place in NL MVP Voting

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Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.