With March Madness in full effect this weekend it means only one thing. Yes, basketball of course. But it also means that opening day is just around the corner in Major League Baseball and we get to see just how well our beloved St. Louis Cardinals are going to do this season.
With that said. There were a ton of questions we all had going into Spring Training that we hoped would be answered by now. What questions have been answered? What questions remain? Let’s discuss!
* Pitching? Chris Carpenter is out. Jaime Garcia is doing much better than I expected … not amazing but he’s doing better than last season. Adam Wainwright is the ace and is looking for a big pay day before the season starts. Lance Lynn and Jake Westbrook are slim and, for some of you, arguably pitching effectively. The remaining question has been the final spot in the starting rotation being battled out by Shelby Miller and Joe Kelly. Good problem to have but things look to be tipping toward Shelby getting the job and Joe going to the bullpen for long relief. The option of Joe and Trevor Rosenthal in long relief is amazing. There are good options in the minors too with John Gast, Seth Maness and Michael Wacha. The St. Louis Cardinals have pitching. So many options. And for that I am pleased. It’s a problem we haven’t been blessed with in a long time.
* Middle Infield? So Rafael Furcal is out after having Tommy John surgery. Pete Kozma is the projected starting shortstop. Matt Carpenter and his bat are the expected second baseman and will share time with Daniel Descalso. Daniel is quite versatile and will be able to help out not only at second, but can back up David Freese at third and Kozma at short. The fan base seems to want there to either be another veteran presence at short or go ahead and have inconsistent-as-hell Ryan Jackson and top prospects Greg Garcia and Kolten Wong available RIGHT NOW. It will be smart in the long run to have Garcia and Wong in Memphis getting at bats. And Jackson too for that matter. Maybe they will be able to trade for a veteran shortstop to help with Kozma. But… let’s let Kozma have a chance. Please!
* Matt Adams? He’s still a big question but it does appear he will be on the bench for the Cardinals to start the season. He can back up Allen Craig at first as well as be a designated hitter during Interleague Play. It would be awesome if he could get some time in the outfield to back up Matt Holliday or Carlos Beltran. But that’s too much to ask right now. He just needs to get his bat in the line up. That’s all! Simple enough! Pssh!
*Oscar Taveras? Will he start the season on the bench in St. Louis or get playing time in Memphis? It would be nice to have him on the bench to back up any of the outfielders as well as pinch hit. But. He needs consistent playing time. He just does. I wouldn’t be surprised if he started the season in Memphis just to get him some at bats. And playing time. He will be with St. Louis at some point this season. That’s a certainty.
Any big questions that I missed? Feel free to comment below and let me know what questions you still have on the 2013 Cardinals. Or if I am totally off-base!