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Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014

Cardinals serious contenders for Holliday?

Posted Wednesday, June 24, 2009, at 3:37 PM

Joe Strauss, the Cardinals beat writer for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, had the following to say about Athletics slugger Matt Holliday:

"My information is that Holliday badly wants to play in St. Louis and would be receptive to a long-term arrangement if the Cardinals acquire him. That said, the A's are asking a ransom for him (Ludwick, Motte/Perez, prospect). That price may drop next month. However, right now it's one the Cardinals aren't prepared to play."

The fact that Holliday is receptive to a potential long-term deal will likely pique the Cardinals' interest quite a bit, as they likely wouldn't want to give up a ton of talent for a mid-season rental. Even still, just as Strauss said, the asking price is very high so the Cards will undoubtedly wait until closer to the trade deadline for the price to drop.

The question is this: Is Holliday that much of an upgrade over Ludwick? A lot of people will say no because of Holliday's current stats, but they are forgetting that Holliday place in a pitcher's park that saps power away from even the biggest swingers. If the Cardinals can somehow hold onto Ludwick and obtain Holliday with the likelihood of an extension past this season, they can legitimize their lineup and surround Pujols with plenty of protection in the lineup. Imagine this lineup after the trade deadline:

Schumaker

Rasmus

Pujols

Holliday

Ludwick

Greene (if producing like he can)

Molina

Pitcher

Ryan

That lineup would take some pressure of Ludwick to produce. I think that's a lot of his problem right now, and he had another legitimate bat in the lineup last year to help produce in Glaus.I feel like this lineup could do some serious damage. And if the team stayed intact next season, add on hitting sensation Brett Wallace at third base and the lineup becomes riddled with a mixture of average and power guys who can make for a long night for opposing pitchers.

I'm not saying this deal is going to happen, but I think it would be a great step in the right direction toward really making a push for this year, as well as subsequent seasons.

Leave some comments with your analysis.


Comments
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Holliday would be a good player in St. Louis, if St. Louis was a mile high. He isn't the same player outside of Denver.

-- Posted by Baseballfan88 on Tue, Jul 7, 2009, at 2:42 PM

Oakland is very much a pitcher's park. I think that's what you meant to say.

I agree that Holliday is not someone who is going to fill all of our gaps. If we acquire him, it will likely be in the offseason. We desperately need some more starting pitching. Wellemeyer is absolutely worthess -- I believe he has an ERA close to 7 in his previous 10 starts, and that's not getting the job done. Thompson is not an answer in the rotation. Lohse is going to have to pitch well when he comes back, and the Cards are going to need to acquire some pitching help.

It's true that we have many, many holes to fill; however, we've been lucky enough to be in a division so bad that we can hang around and maybe stumble into the playoffs like we did in 2006.

-- Posted by Brandon Higgins on Tue, Jun 30, 2009, at 1:24 PM

I realize I am writing this post the Perez trade, but I think the Holliday deal is a bad one. For one, while he is not faring well in a hitter's park, it is also his first test outside the "friendly confines" of Denver. Who's to say that his good fortune in the past isn't altitude? Second, we don't have enough to acquire him. The Cardinals right now have too many gaps to think that they are "one hitter" away from being complete enough to compete. If we give too much, the stretching it creates to get him will combine with the other gaps to be "too little, too late" anyway. DeRosa was a good deal (though the impact is nill so far), but even he is not the defensive upgrade they need. We are making errors at every infield position, sabotaging the sinker pitcher approach we have, shooting ourselves in the foot. We need defensive upgrades, some power, and extra pitching. None of this for sure is fixed by Holliday (though there is no one else available to fit this need either).

-- Posted by sfurby on Tue, Jun 30, 2009, at 12:26 PM

You would be surprised at Santana's splits against LHs. Traditionally, lefties hit slightly better off of him, and the difference is even more pronounced this year, with LHs hitting 250 and RHs hitting .224. The SLG is the biggest difference, with LHs going for a .529 clip and RHs slugging .338. Naturally, this makes the OPS way in favor of LHs by 201 points. The biggest reason for this is that the LH changeup is designed to neutralize RH bats and vice versa, whereas most LHP rely on a slider against LHB to neutralize them.

Since Tony plays the numbers, that's the reason for the three lefties, I would guess.

-- Posted by Brandon Higgins on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 11:10 AM

Yep. Dunc and Ankiel can't hit their way out of a paper sack at this point. Knowing the Cards are not going to resign him, I sure wish we could get something for him. Dunc, on the other hand, if we could land a sack of batting practice balls.... then I say deal him.

I would like to see a change up taught as well, but Dunc loves him some slider. I have been a Perez guy for a while, but he seems a bit lost right now. I do commend TLR and Dunc for admitting they messed up with Motte, throwing him out there on opening day as the starter, but he seems to be making bigger strides now in his role. Meanwhile, it is hard to argue with the job Franklin has been doing.

Gearing up for a little Carp/Santana battle today. TLR has three lefties in the lineup today. Good luck.

-- Posted by oldtrougher on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 10:57 AM

I think the Cardinals will be more likely to try to keep Perez based on the fact that he's younger and has a far more advanced breaking ball than Motte. If I were Dave Duncan, I think I would really consider getting Motte off the slider and teach him a changeup. That would give him a Gagne-esque repertoire. I feel like trying to teach a slider at this level is tough, especially with someone who wants to try to throw it as hard as possible like Motte. Heck, even teach him a cutter. Something with a normal release that doesn't require the extra torque and the repeatability of a slider.

Back to the subject at hand, however. Including Duncan or Ankiel in a trade is going to take a lot of prospects to sweeten it because those two guys are worthless in the market right now. They're liabilities at the plate. We just have to wait for the supply of possible acquisitions to go up in order for the demand to come down. As long as we can dilly-dally around at the top of the division, we can hold off on moves and wait for the right one to come along, and I believe that's the approach the front office is wanting to take for sure.

Thanks for reading!

-- Posted by Brandon Higgins on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 10:26 AM

Yes. Read the Strauss thing during his chat yesterday. I like the deal IF you can get him to sign an extension to stay in The Lou. Outside of Rasmus the outfield has been terrible. Ankiel in the 4 hole last night was just terrible. I would have walked Albert too. If they can wait for the price to drop a bit and somehow take Luddo out of the mix, throw in a Dunc or Ankiel instead I would be fine with that. I am not sure on Dunc's contract status beyond this season, but I know he has next to no trade value as well. Maybe more for an AL team? Maybe. Ankiel is free agent after the season and his season so far is costing him some big bucks on the market. I would be fine with dealing either Motte or Perez, but would lean to keeping Motte based on work this season.

I agree with the Glaus remark. Having that big bat a spot or two behind Luddo last year really helped him. The Birds just don't have that this year, outside of Kahlil in KC.

-- Posted by oldtrougher on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 10:15 AM


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A blog for Cardinals fans by a Cardinals fan. This blog will explore the happenings in the St. Louis Cardinals organization on a semi-daily basis, from roster moves to game-by-game analysis.
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