The Cardinals officially added shortstop depth with of a two-time World Champion

The Cardinals just went out and grabbed their shortstop depth in the form of Brandon Crawford.

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After rumors began to bubble over the weekend that the St. Louis Cardinals would be interested in adding shortstop depth to their roster, the club is officially adding two-time World Series Champion Brandon Crawford on a one-year deal.

Crawford, a three-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glover, is coming off the worst season of his career after slashing .194/.273/.314 and a -1.3 bWAR in 93 games. While Crawford is being brought in as depth and insurance in the case of Tommy Edman's recovery being delayed or a potential injury or struggles from Masyn Winn, the signing still creates additional questions the Cardinals will have to answer.

Outside of needing to remove someone from the 40-man roster, the Cardinals seem to be sending a signal about some of the young position players on their roster, namely Thomas Saggese and Alec Burleson. The Cardinals want to see Saggese take reps at shortstop this spring, but a move like this signals they are not comfortable with him as that third option yet. It may even signal that they know Edman's recovery may take longer than they initially thought.

For Burleson, whenever Edman is healthy, it's hard to imagine him being on the roster unless they were to release or DFA one of Matt Carpenter or Crawford. Dylan Carlson or another center field option along with Ivan Herrera would be filling the other two roster spots.

How this deal ends up being viewed will be determined by three different things:

1. How will Brandon Crawford perform?

Ultimately, if Crawford excels in St. Louis, no one will be complaining about the deal. But if he is struggling at the plate or in the field, it will draw a lot of concerns and frustration.

2. How much Brandon Crawford plays?

If Crawford is getting significant playing time on the team while not performing, people will have questions, and rightfully so.

3. Does Brandon Crawford block players who are worthy of a roster spot?

This question applies to both Crawford and Carpenter. If either or both or struggling and there is a youngster in Memphis who is ready to produce at the big league level, they should not be blocking them from an opportunity.

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