Just shy yet again of the playoffs, Cardinals President of Baseball Operations, John Mozeliak, has made it no secret this offseason the Cardinals will be making moves. Here is a list of top targets for the Cardinals this offseason going into the 2018 season:
Josh Donaldson, 3B (via trade) – A move Cardinals fans have been asking about all year was if the Cardinals could land Donaldson. Talks happened (apparently) got nowhere. Going into his age 32 season and only under contract for one year that would cost $17-million. One would hope the Blue Jays aren’t looking for the whole farm.
A deal for a team that is trying to shed some contracts, like the Jays, are looking for under control talent. Delvin Perez (SS/3B), Jack Flaherty (RHP), Randal Grichuk (OF/DH). Might have to give up more than that if you expect the Jays to eat any contract. Had this move of been last season, it could have cost Alex Reyes too.
J.D. Martinez, OF (via free agency) – In 2013 the Astros payroll was smaller than some individual players, like Alex Rodriguez. They waived a .250 hitting outfielder named J.D. Martinez, who was picked up by the Detroit Tigers shortly after that. Since Detroit added him, from 2014-2017 he hit .299/.357/.540 and averaged 28 homeruns and 33 doubles. Going on age 30 in 2018 he is expected to make bank. This may be the a deal Cardinals fans hate, but at 6-years/ $25-27M annually with either an opt out or no trade clause. You can enjoy his power and his .983 career fielding percentage at corner outfield.
Chris Tillman, SP (via free agency) – This was his worst season ever, going 1-7 with a 7.84 ERA means the starter, who had pitched above .500 every year from 2011-2016, will come at a cheaper price. Potentially Tillman is looking for a restart in a less hitter friendly park and division. Worst case, he stinks and gets cut, best case could be a back end starter who averages 190 innings pitched a season. 1-year/ 6M (with incentives).
Jake McGee, RP (via free agency) – I don’t think this bullpen is a total tear down, but needs veterans who can get outs. With Oh gone and Rosenthal out. McGee could fill in at the back end of games. Outside of Denver he had a 2.64 ERA and a WHIP of 0.880 this season. So his stats are not what they suggest if you just look at them as a whole. Last season he allowed a .227 BA in innings 7-9 (Coors Field included). Hopefully a 2-years/ 8M deal can land him. Otherwise there isn’t much out there cheap that has good numbers. Would probable look to convert a starter, or pray someone good falls in our laps like they somehow seem to do. Juan Nicasio seems like a lock to be resigned, Bryan Shaw is an interesting name to look for as well.
Evan Longoria (3B), Jake Odorizzi (SP), Brad Boxberger (RP) – It would check off every box on the Cardinals needs list, someone who can be a backend starter who is cheap in Odorizzi (who is arbitration eligible but not currently able to hit free agency till 2020). Boxberger was a one season closer then was moved to setup roles after that, still keeping both lefty and righty hitters to a .215 average is not bad for the once all-star. Longoria is under contract till 2023 and at basically 15M/year it would take someone who career wise still is a 20-homerun 80-RBI guy. What will it cost? Dakota Hudson (SP), Delvin Perez, (SS), Tyler O’Neill (OF), and a PTBNL
Who do you want signed?
What would you give up for a big bat or a lights out arm?
Does pineapple go on pizza?
Let us know!