jackky: The Cardinals8217 Crowded Starting Rotat
The Cardinals8217 Crowded Starting Rotat
Like the Atlanta Braves, the St. Louis Cardinals usually have good problems. The Cardinals will probably po se s a top ten rotation in 2014, but they still need to figure out who's going to fit into the rotation, and who definitely are the odd men out. Men is the key word here, because the Cardinals dont have recently six options, or even seven, but rather eight legitimate candidates for that starting rotation. Lets walk-through salomon Speedcross 3 Men it, we could?
First, the sure things. Adam wainwright tops this list. Since he came back for the 2012 season, only four pitchers have accumulated more WAR than has Wainwright Justin Verlander, Felix Hernandez, Clayton Kershaw and Max Scherzer. There isnt a rational argument to keep Wainwright out of the rotation.
Based on the proven fact that he soon started Game 2 in both the nation's League Championship Series and the World Series, Michael Wacha would also seem to be a lock. Certainly, the rookie was impre sive in both the regular and postseason. From the 274 pitchers who to sed at least 60 innings this past year, Wachas 80 FIP- ranked 52nd. He actually wasnt just like a starting pitcher because he would be a reliever, but the outlook for him is still bullish in 2014. Both Steamer and ZiPS peg him to be in the discu sion for second-best starter on the squad:
PitcherSteamer IPSteamer ERASteamer FIPSteamer WARZiPS IPZiPS ERAZiPS FIPZiPS WARAdam Wainwright1933.242.943.918.104.22.1684.0Michael Wacha1553.753.512.1155.33.533.652.3Lance Lynn1603.73.512.1173.73.523.412.6Jaime Garcia1663.663.282.3116.33.793.421.4Shelby Miller1123.663.671.322.214.171.1243.2Joe Kelly8126.96.36.19946.73.873.931.5Carlos Martinez833.653.690.3108.33.743.791.3Trevor Rosenthal652.592.8188.8.131.522. salomon Speedcross 4 511.6
The others in that mix would seem to become Lance Lynn and Shelby Miller. Miller appeared to be underappreciated by his team during the postseason, and the fact that he never received a reason why he wasnt being used was clearly frustrating to him, not to mention a good portion from the baseball Twitterati. As Mike Podhorzer stated in THT 14, Miller did throw his changeup more in the second half, and introduced a cutter too, and as a result saw his strikeout and walk percentages regre s, but he didnt suddenly are a pumpkin.
While Miller was just unappreciated during the postseason, Lynn has been regularly underestimated. He was written off after his breakout 2012 campaign, as numerous observers said his i sues with left-handed hitters would hold him back in 2013. However it didnt. Regardle s of whether you fancy ERA, FIP, xFIP or wOBA allowed, Lynn did better against lefties in 2013 than he did in 2012. He walked fewer of them on the rate basis, and he allowed far Salomon Speedcross 3 CS Men fewer homers too. The differences werent major, however they were enough to create him a three-win pitcher, and three-win pitchers dont exactly grow on trees.
Over the past two seasons, only 32 pitchers happen to be worth more than Lynn. His 6.0 WAR is preferable to Jeff Samardzija, Ricky Nolasco, C.J. Wilson, Matt Cain, Mike Minor, Jose Quintana, Jered Weaver and Justin Masterson. He doesnt fare as well in RA9-WAR, which is likely the reason why he winds up being shoved to the periphery, but even here he has done much better than Samardzija, and the Cubs happen to be demanding a ransom for him. Still, Lynn has experience in the bullpen, and that he was good there. Both his capability to pitch there and pitch well there lead him to a po sible rotation victim.
Clocking in after both of these is Jaime Garcia. Unlike Lynn, Garcia isnt going to be flexible in the role. In fact, its a wide open question regarding just what he has left. Projections are conservative, as they ought to be. Garcia battled shoulder troubles in October 2012, and decided to try and pitch through it. Now, hes around the wrong side of both Tommy John and shoulder surgeries. Hes lefty and merely 27-years-old, and hes had lots of past succe s, but hes someone to watch in spring training. But whether or not hes good, he cant be used in any sort of high-leverage bullpen role, so hes e sentially starter or bust.
On an ordinary team, youd slot these five guys into the rotation and do the dance of joy. However the Cardinals are not a normal team, and they've at least three additional candidates for that rotation. Carlos Martinez was twice ranked in the top 40 by Marc Hulet last year, and while there are concerns about him being able to be a starting pitcher long-term, you cant determine if he is an unsucce sful starter until you allow him to play the role of a starter. Joe Kelly probably isnt so good, but he'd that shiny 2.69 ERA last season, and that he shut down the Dodgers in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series, and things like that tend to linger inside a managers mind even if he did quit four runs in five innings in and took the lo s in Game 5 of the NLCS. Finally, there's Rosenthal, who's the real fly within the ointment and/or monkey within the wrench here.
Rosenthal continues salomon Speedcross 3 Women to be told he'll be the closer next season, but he really wants to start. And as a 24-year-old with four-to-five many years of control, an electric fastball and (ostensibly) a four-pitch mix, the only real reason to not allow him to attempt to start is because you've too many qualified candidates for the rotation. But is that a real good reason? Jason Motte should be ready to come back and hold on the bullpen, as well as if he doesnt, someone else will step-up. Someone always does for that Cardinals. The bullpen was supposed to be the way in which Rosenthal broke in to the majors Salomon Speedcross 4 Women , not be where he stayed. Things dont always work out the way you plan them, obviously, but what is the harm in giving him his shot?
Perhaps Im reading an exce sive amount of in to the situation. Perhaps Martinez, Kelly and Rosenthal give St. Louis an in-depth bullpen that can to s multiple innings at a moments notice, and therefore are pleased to perform task. Perhaps Garcia will immediately be just like he used to be. Perhaps Lynn isn't considered for that bullpen. But perhaps Garcia wont be the same, or be able to go whatsoever. Perhaps people figure out how to laid off Wachas stuff. Perhaps Lynn gets relegated towards the bullpen, or becomes trade bait. In almost any of these cases, the Cards will have plenty of reinforcements. And thats the best thing, even if figuring out the pecking order gets complicated.