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Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings on FOX Sports Midwest

FOX Sports Midwest takes fans behind the scenes with Senior Vice President and General Manager John Mozeliak and the St. Louis Cardinals baseball operations staff in Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings.

The 30-minute special premieres Wednesday, December 17 at 6:30 p.m. CT on FOX Sports Midwest. Host Jim Hayes plus a producer and photographer had access inside Cardinals headquarters during the recently-completed Winter Meetings in San Diego.

Here is a short preview clip:

See if you can identify all of the people in the room. Pretty much every front office staffer was there, from special assistants to the scouting, farm and international directors and many more!

Air dates and times on FOX Sports Midwest (times Central):

  • Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Dec. 18 at 6 p.m.
  • Thursday, Dec. 18 at 8 p.m.
  • Thursday, Jan. 8 at 5 p.m.

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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22 Responses to “Cardinals Confidential: Inside the Winter Meetings on FOX Sports Midwest”

  1. crdswmn says:

    Oh God, the dreaded Asbrubal Cabrera rumors have reared their ugly head again.

    I know he has some offensive pop, but this guy is one of the worst defensive shortstops in all of baseball. He is even worse than Descalso.

    Please no.

    • Brian Walton says:

      According to the 2014 SABR Defensive Index, used in Gold Glove Award scoring, Cabrera was fourth among American League shortstops, with Jeter 13th and last.

      Oddly, only two AL shortstops had a positive SDI, while everyone in the NL did except three.

      • crdswmn says:

        He has a Fangraphs Defensive rating of -15.4 over the last four seasons. That’s third from the bottom (ranked 219 out of 221)

        Defensive metrics are what they are, but I have heard nothing positive from fans I know in the AL about his defense. They say he is worse than he has ever been.

      • crdswmn says:

        Here’s an article from Jim Ingraham, the Indians’ beat writer about Cabrera from June of 2014. Not flattering at all.

        • Brian Walton says:

          I take it you skipped the reader comments.. 😉

          • crdswmn says:

            All 2 of them? That’s quite a consensus.

            • Brian Walton says:

              I found it more compelling than a grumpy writer quoting errors.

              • crdswmn says:

                Of course you did, because you like the idea of Cabrera. I don’t. He’s a terrible shortstop.

                It seems like every year we go through this and the debacle that was Ryan Theriot becomes a distant memory.

                I will tell you what I tell everyone else. I will NEVER accept putting a bad defender in a premier defensive just to get a little more offense. It didn’t work with Ryan Theriot and it will not work with Cabrera.

                By the way, I could find dozens more articles about how bad Cabrera’s defense is, in fact I did. But I am not going to clog up the blog with that, because it is pointless. This is a issue we will never agree on. I am adamant about my hatred for sacrificing defense for offense at shortstop.

                • Brian Walton says:

                  In your scenario, I guess it would be best to keep Kozma.

                  My only point on Cabrera is that the world is not unanimous on his being at the bottom of the barrel.

                  The 2014 Cardinals had a very poor hitting bench. The offense was the team’s weakest link. Substituting Cabrera for Descalso would be a step up in my opinion. Overall, I do not feel the same way about Kozma, (or the other three current contenders for that matter).

                  This is in the front of mind right now as I am writing the top prospect capsule for Greg Garcia. My pessimistic words do not match my optimistic ranking.

                  (I should mention that Cabrera to the Cardinals seems unlikely to me due to the price tag if nothing else, but I do wish they would add someone better than they have currently.)

                  • crdswmn says:

                    Was Theriot worth it? He hit better than Brendan Ryan did. Yet I know a lot of people. who before we traded for Furcal, were willing to have Ryan back just to get rid of Theriot.

                    I get that Cabrera would hit better than Kozma. But is there any limit to how bad a defender you would be willing to accept to get a little better offense from a back up? At what point does the defense become intolerable? Your threshold for defense pain is higher than mine. That’s all.

                    • Brian Walton says:

                      Bring up Theriot is a bit of apples and oranges comparison. He was essentially a starter, given just under 500 plate appearances. I thought we were talking about a reserve to replace Descalso, who had 184 PAs last season. Average to below average defense would be less of an exposure for a reserve than a starter.

                    • crdswmn says:

                      And there aren’t better shortstop defenders than Cabrera that would would hit better than Descalso? Hitting better than Descalso is not a high bar.

                      It’s only December. There is still time and Cabrera is not such a prize that losing him to another team would be all that devastating. Who knows who might become available later. Even starting out with Kozma or one of the others to see how it goes and then making a deal later if needed, to me is a better option than settling for a bad defender now and regretting it later.

  2. blingboy says:

    Is there a reason why Cabrera would consider a bench player job at this point? Or is a starter job unlikely? I am not current on his situation.

  3. Bw52 says:

    Don`t mean to intrude on Crdswmn and Brian`s debate but one would hope the Cards can replace Kozma with someone from the bunch including Greg Garcia,Ty Kelly or Dean Anna.Keeping Kozma as strickly a defensive backup is a luxury right now.It would be nice to see Ty Kelly show enough to win a spot.A switch-hitting bench option would be great.Greg Garcia or Dean Anna as other backup.Keep a 6 man bench instead of 97 pitchers.I know its a pipe dream…………….having a 11 man pitching staff and 14 position players but I can hope.

    • Brian Walton says:

      OK, but in the realistic world with a five-man bench, who is your back up shortstop with Kelly on the team? He has one appearance at SS in six years in the minors. There is likely a very good reason he hasn’t played the position more.

      Sounds like it would be a Descalso repeat to me. Force-fit a guy who hasn’t played shortstop into the job in the majors and then have to make excuses when he can’t handle the position.

      Though no one will say it, I think the addition of Reynolds knocked Kelly out of the immediate picture.

      From my view, if they have to settle for Anna or Garcia, they may as well have kept Descalso. Sadly, Kozma remains the most viable choice, IMO, unless they get someone else. If the Cabrera rumor is viable, it seems they may be considering that.

      • Bw52 says:

        Isn`t Cabrera something of a headcase ? I know he had a PED suspension but seems to me I read that he was not liked and was a selfish player.

        • Bw52 says:

          I would rather keep Kozma than sign Cabrera.Crdswmn pointed out his defensive woes and if he is a headcase why bring trouble aboard?

        • Brian Walton says:

          You may have your shortstop Cabreras confused. Everth Cabrera had a PED suspension in the same Biogenesis group as Peralta. He is also a free agent. If you have one, what difference would two make?

          Fortunately, there are more options than just Kozma and Asdrubal Cabrera. Like I said last night, I don’t think Asdrubal Cabrera is a fit for the Cards due to playing time and at-bats. I am more enthused that it would be signalling the team may still be in the market to improve at the position.

          On the bad teammate point, did we not learn anything from the AJP experience? That stuff can be way overblown. When AJ was signed, there were literally pages of posts on the TCN message board complaining about him being a cancer and how he would ruin the team. Reality was very different.

    • crdswmn says:

      Intrude away. I’m done.

  4. crdswmn says:

    Prime example of how these “interest” tweets from media people get way out of hand. Yesterday when Heyman tweeted the Cabrera interest, folks on Twitter (yes, they are baseball ignorant) started speculating that the Cards “interest” must mean they want to trade Peralta. That has now morphed into “rumors” that the Cardinals are shopping Peralta.

    Nevermind that Derrick Goold told people that the Cabrera “interest” was nothing more than a due diligence call.

    I really wish the media would stop tweeting this crap. At least wait until there is evidence of something concrete.

    • Brian Walton says:

      Agents feed media info. They want the perception out there to be that there is a lot of demand for their clients. The rumor guys seem to have few common sense filters in their rush to be first, leaving it to the reader to sort it out. So many fans are so anxious, it easily gets out of hand.

      We saw that in spades when the substance of an earlier Heyman report – a full article, not just a tweet – was about the Cards having met internally about Scherzer. That had no news value at all.

      On the other hand, we also have to be careful with the other side of the story. Take Goold’s news. He probably took the diligent action, which was to ask Mo or one of his assistants about it. If they were actually negotiating with Cabrera, it seems highly unlikely they would admit it, though.

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