St Louis Die Hards  > Group Message Board  > I Simply Don't Get It
January 28, 2009, 05:31 PM
Okay, with the news today of Jon Garland signing with Arizona, I am completely befuddled. I know I have spent much of the off-season bitching about what Dollar Bill and Mozeliak have done, or rather what they haven't done, but I really don't get the plan, if there is one.

When the Cardinals signed Kyle Lohse directly after the season ended, Mozeliak confirmed then that this was step one, and that they definitely wanted to add another starter to the rotation. He sang the same song as the Winter meetings came and went in December. Later he backed off of that a little bit, as the price for pitchers like AJ Burnett and Derek Lowe went sky high. So, here we sit three months after the Lohse signing, and the Cards have still not added to the rotation.

I understand and agree with not overpaying for a long term deal for someone like Derek Lowe. What I don't get, though, is not being in the mix and making a relatively inexpensive bid for someone like Garland. Here we have a durable innings-eater....someone who has won in double figures seven straight years and has pitched 191 or more innings in each of those seven seasons. Given the payroll room the Cardinals have, and their stated goal of adding another starter, are we to really believe that the Cards couldn't have afforded a one year deal that basically amounts to $7M??? I know that Garland has a pretty high BA against and had a so-so ERA last year, but his numbers would surely improve in the NL, and he would add MUCH needed depth to the Cardinal rotation.

I am confident that if asked about this, Mozeliak would start talking about the positive reports they have had recently on Carpenter, but I'm not buying that. We heard the same things about Carp last year and the same things about Mulder in 2007 and 2008. I love Carp and no one hopes he returns to form any more than I do, but the truth is that he has barely pitched for two seasons and really can not be counted on. What happened to the big deal Mozeliak made when Mulder was bought out about how the Cardinals had learned their lesson and weren't going to rely on injured pitchers any longer???

If you take Carp out of the equation, which I think you must, the Cards have a rotation of Wainwright, Lohse, Wellemeyer, Pineiro and Boggs/McClellan. Hardly enough to compete with Chicago and definitely not a starting five that Jon Garland would not upgrade. Maybe they have something else lined up, but to me the fact that we would not make a better offer than 1 year and $7M for a pitcher of Garland's ability tells me that they have no intention of improving and no intention of upgrading the rotation like they stated in October.

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