Results tagged ‘ John Mozeliak ’

If the Cardinals are shopping, what are they buying?

The Cardinals find themselves bunched in the middle of the National League Central and still waiting for an underachieving club to start playing up to potential. The defending NL champs have plenty of room for improvement, yet they don’t necessarily have clarity in how to identify those needs.

The club has thus far been anchored by its rotation, though recent injuries to Jaime Garcia and Michael Wacha thinned that depth. Joe Kelly is poised to come off the disabled list later this week, and the Cardinals remain optimistic that Wacha will return next month. (Garcia is done for the year.) An MRI taken on Wacha’s shoulder on Monday revealed healing, but not enough for the righty to resume throwing. The Cardinals will reevaluate in two weeks.

Asked how Wacha’s status could affect the team’s Trade Deadline strategy, general manager John Mozeliak said: “It really doesn’t affect it one way or the other.”

He then elaborated.

“Well, we expect to get Kelly back at some point and feel pretty confident that those five can be successful,” Mozeliak said. “There are probably very few pitchers we could go out and acquire without having to give up one of those to begin with. I think that would just make it problematic, so for us we feel pretty good where we’re at from a pitching standpoint.”

Seeking to upgrade offensively would make a lot of sense for the Cardinals, who are at or near the bottom of the NL in runs scored, home runs and slugging percentage. But then the question becomes where to find the fit? Not only do the Cardinals have to find a seller who is not asking for a gaggle of prospects, but Mozeliak has to figure out where another bat would go.

The club is already struggling to find playing time for all its outfielders now that Oscar Taveras has been recalled. Across the infield, the only obvious opening would be to add someone at second or third and have Matt Carpenter play the other of those two positions. The Cardinals do not, though, want to block Kolten Wong for the long-term, so that, too could be troublesome.

“Certainly when you look at the sort of teams that are willing to trade players, there’s just not too many of them right now,” Mozeliak said. “Look, we’ll stay active on it, but as you guys know, that’s not something I report on, our day-to-day strategy, or who we’re talking to. If we’re able to do something to help the club we’re certainly going to try.

“I think you could say we could worry about a lot of things. The right strategy is if we think there’s an opportunity to improve, we’ll try. We’re not going to make a bad decision just in a panic situation.”

Perhaps a little more time will provide a bit more clarity.

– Jenifer Langosch

Tulo to Cards a Hot Stove rumor too hot not to talk about

Top representatives of the Rockies and the Cardinals will be in the same place, Orlando, during the MLB Generals Managers Meetings. So does two plus two equal a trade of Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to the Cardinals?

Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak spoke to SiriusXM Radio’s Jim Bowden on Sunday morning, and Bowden tweeted that the Cards are willing to trade a starting pitcher for  shortstop who will be under team control for years. Tulowtizki is 29 and signed through 2020, and the Cards can afford the $134 million he is owed over the life of his contract.

The possibility of talks is too hot for the Hot Stove rumor mill to ignore, even though Rockies owner Dick Monfort has said he has no plans to trade Tulowitzki (or outfielder Carlos Gonzalez, for that matter), and no other club official has said privately or publicly that the team would deal Tulowitzki for multipe parts. FoxSports.com reporter Ken Rosenthal last week called a deal that would sent Tulo to the Cards a “longshot.” However, he suggests the Cards give up first baseman Allen Craig, right-handed starter and National League Rookie of the Year candidate Shelby Miller and righty closer Trevor Rosenthal for Tulowitzki.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports wrote Sunday that the teams were expected to talk about a possible deal, adding that the teams have had informal talks. Passan reported that the Cards are unlikely to trade Craig, but Matt Adams (who played first when Craig was injured late in the regular season and held the job during the World Series when a hobbled Craig returned) could be in play. Yahoo! reports the Cards could turn to the Rangers and try to procure Elvis Andrus or Jurickson Profar. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch also suggests that the Indians’ Asdrubal Cabrera, the D-backs Didi Gregorius or free-agent Stephen Drew could replace Pete Kozma as the Cards’ shortstop.

– Thomas Harding

 

 

Roundup: Cardinals give GM a 3-year extension

It turns out John Mozeliak‘s deal with the Cardinals won’t expire just yet. The club awarded its general manager a three-year contract extension on Thursday, which will keep him with the club through 2013 and keep him from walking away at the end of this season, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 
Mozeliak joined the Cardinals via the scouting department in 1995 and later served for five years as assistant GM under Walt Jocketty, who’s now with the Reds — the team leading the Cardinals in the division by a game. Mozeliak, named senior vice president and GM after the ’07 season, is most noted for acquiring Matt Holliday before the non-waiver Trade Deadline, then signing him to a seven-year contract at the end of the season — one that saw St. Louis claim a National League Central title. 
Here’s more from around the league … 
* The Reds are “looking hard” for right-handed relief help, ESPN’s Buster Olney wrote in his Twitter account. Kerry Wood, Olney speculates, could be an option. 

* The Dodgers placed late-inning lefty reliever George Sherrill on waivers recently, a baseball source told MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick. Sherrill, owed $4.5 million this season, posted a 1.70 ERA in 72 games last year, but has a 7.32 ERA in 34 appearances this season.

* The Padres may be in contention, and Adrian Gonzalez may be under contract for another season after this one, but the Red Sox still like him, and would still like to attain him, according to a report from WEEI.com.  

* The Angels are not willing to trade outfield prospect Mike Trout, USA Today’s Bob Nightengale wrote on his Twitter account. 

* Rice third baseman Anthony Rendon, expected by many to be a top pick in the upcoming First-Year Player Draft in June, suffered a fracture-dislocation of his right ankle while playing in a USA Baseball Collegiate Team exhibition against Korea on Wednesday night, writes MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo. He will require surgery and will miss the rest of Team USA’s summer season. 

– Alden Gonzalez

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