So, hello to all St. Louis Cardinals fans and/or Assistants. I'll start with a little about myself so you can get to know me:
My name is Kyle. I'm a current college football player, just finishing up my freshman year. I've always been a huge fantasy baseball fan, and I've been a lifelong Cardinals fan albeit growing up in Connecticut. Both fantasy baseball and the Cardinals fandom have caused me to follow the minor leagues very closely, especially the Cardinals system. I'll do my very best to be around every day for a few hours to check in and respond to any comments on our thread.
Now, there are a few orders of business before we get started that must be covered:
1. I'm looking for an Assistant Scouting Director for the Cardinals. I'd prefer someone with experience in the MOD, because this is my first go-round as Scouting Director. Drop a comment if you have interest in being an assistant for the Cardinals.
2. All input from everyone will be considered. I don't mind if you are bouncing between two or three different teams. I just ask that if at all possible, you keep our information here and other teams' information out. There will already be enough overlap between teams all being on the same site. Remember, "what happens in the Cardinals MOD, stays in the Cardinals MOD." If you follow that, you'll be fine.
3. Everyone's contribution is important. Even a controversial take can promote good discussion. But make sure you are familiarized with the players and with the Cardinals' needs and wants. I know it's so very tempting to flip script and nab someone that you really like, but we are representing the Cardinals right now. Attempting to mimic and better the Cardinals' 2021 World Series hopes. Keep that in mind when making suggestions.
Sweet, that's pretty much all the moderator stuff that I have to take care of. Now, let's go have some fun with the Cardinals 2013 Draft, except...
How can we know where we're going if we don't know where we are?
The first thing that I want to do is analyze our team and farm system, and figure out weaknesses. I'm not denoting that we should draft strictly for need by any means (I think drafting by need is punishable by death around here). I'm saying that we should adjust our predraft board to suit our team's specific trends and talents. Without further adieu:
Majors - The Cardinals have tons of starting pitching in the majors. Wainwright was extended, Miller is dominating, and Lynn is young. Garcia is a question mark and Westbrook likely leaves after this season. Depending on how you view them, we can toss in Rosenthal, Martinez, and Joe Kelly as potential rotation options.
High Minors - The Cardinals have a lot of options here in the high-minors. Wacha is the most notable, our first round pick last season. Others such as Tyler Lyons, John Gast, and Seth Manness are all options in the majors as back end starters.
Low Minors - Tyrell Jenkins jumps out as the first player in the low minors who could make an impact. Tim Cooney (our 3rd rounder last year) can move fast. Silfredo Garcia and Lee Stoppelman could both surprise and make a play.
Verdict - This one is fairly obvious. The Cardinals have dominant SP depth, best in the majors by my count. The biggest need would be high upside guys in the low minors, so a high school SP could fit well into the system.
Majors - The Cardinals haven't had great luck with relievers in the majors to date. But they are deep and talented still. Rosenthal and Martinez both could end up at the back of the bullpen. That'd almost be a disappointment for each, but they'd fill a role in the squad and that's important. The team is young here.
Minors - All of the other positions I'm going to group together the entire minors. Starting pitching is easier to separate though. There are lots of options here at RP, especially when a few of the SP fail to develop. Flamethrowers Cleto and Jordan Swagerty both have a chance to be back end RP.
Verdict - Overall, pitching is strong in both talent and depth. I don't foresee a RP in the draft being taken by the Cardinals because of the overall depth, and lack of need in the fast-to-majors department.
Majors - Yadier, oh Yadier. He's been so good and given such stability. He's locked in for about another 3-4 years before the question of a replacement comes up.
Minors - Steve Bean was drafted in the supplemental first round last year (59th overall). There really isn't much past him in terms of potential major league players at catcher.
Verdict - A catcher might be a good pick this year because of the lack of depth. If Yadier declines fast, we could see a big problem. Namely handing Russell Martin $20M to be our catcher. A college catcher for quick development could suit us in the later rounds, or one of the glut of high school catchers in the first could pick up wherever Yadier leaves off.
Majors - With Craig, Freese, Holliday, Beltran, Carpenter, Adams and Wigginton all vying for at bats, first base is locked up for the foreseeable future. No true need here because we will need it as a safety net for Holliday, or just a spot to get a great bat like Adams or Craig into the lineup.
Minors - There's no true 1B worth following because of all in the majors. One of the 3B, Piscotty or Carson Kelly, might end up having to make the move to first. But time will tell.
Verdict - I don't think there's a big opportunity for a first basemen to fit in here. With no DH, the NL has first base for the old and slow guys who used to play OF or 3B or catch. I don't see a hole where a 1B could fill all too well. It doesn't fit the mold of multi-positional players that we like to have (Carp, Skip, Craig) to draft a straight lumbering 1B.
Majors - This is Carpenter's position here. We have backups like Kozma and such, but right now this isn't a strength or weakness on the team.
Verdict - Middle infield is a good spot to look at. Second base isn't necessarily locked down, but Wong looks like a future regular. Depth here could be valuable, including a high-upside guy.
Majors - Freese is here. Carpenter can also slide over here when Freese gets injured. There's a good system of talent here in the majors to back up 3B, including Wigginton. Just kidding, sheesh...
Minors - This drew the focus of the org last year. Wisdom, Kelly, and Piscotty all were taken in the 2012 draft. Not all will stick, but it's important to note that the team feels like they covered the spot.
Verdict - The team invested heavily into this spot last year. I doubt it aims to take another few development guys here, but they will if the value is too good to pass up.
Majors - This is kinda a mess. Kozma is nothing more than a utility guy, Furcal is aging and injured. This is the biggest weak spot on the team.
Minors - Greg Garcia is a potential talent here. Ryan Jackson is a utility guy waiting around, Kozma-esque. Otherwise there's nothing to write home about.
Verdict - Ready, aim, fire. Here's the target. The majors and minors are relatively weak at SS, so doubling up here wouldn't be crazy. Definitely needs to be in the scope of this draft though, with the depth in the first and second rounds.
Majors - Holliday, Jay, and Beltran fill the gaps here. The talent here is solid, and Beltran could come back. Craig and Carp can also fill the outfield as backups.
Minors - T..Tav...Taveras? Is that is name? Heard he was a solid option. Anthony Garcia could also fill in here. Piscotty, Tilson, Ramsey, McElroy, Chambers and more can all play here.
Verdict - Full and solid. We are trying to make room in general right now, let alone with another guy coming in. There is room for young minors depth here.
The "Big" Picture
The Cardinals are competitive right now. And with the young talent basically jumping out of the system, the Cardinals are almost at a loss of what to do right now with some of it. The goal of the Cardinals is to be continually known as World Series competitors, from now and beyond. That means that we won't be sacrificing the future of the team, selling off aces and huge bats for rotational relievers and such. And it also means that we won't be blowing up the roster anytime soon. So the draft is absolutely key to our future development and sustained success.
In the comments, I'd like everyone to look to address the State of the Cardinals. We can't really proceed without knowing where we're at, and trying to figure out where we're going. So feel free to talk anything Cardinals, including the future of the majors, the minors, or draft.
Draft Picks and Slot Value
By my math: $5,775,500
So, where are we going?
The Cards have employed a specific strategy. Our current GM has been in office since the 2008 draft. His First Round picks have been the following:
College Hitter: 4 (Wallace, Cox, Wong, Ramsey)
College Pitcher: 1 (Wacha)
High School Hitter: 0
High School Pitcher: 1 (Miller)
Here are the breakdown of his Supplemental Round Picks:
College Hitter: 2
College Pitcher: 2
High School Hitter: 1
High School Pitcher: 1
So clearly the Cardinals place an emphasis on college hitters, following that up with all pitchers and finally high school hitters. I think that shows that we have to focus on college hitters or pitchers when we come up. Just more meat to discuss!
Tentative Future Posts (time TBD)
MOD #2: First Round Picks
MOD #3: Second Round Picks
MOD #4: Third and Fourth Round Picks
MOD #5: Overall Big Board (Tiers)
MOD #6: Pre-Draft and Draft Day Discussion
Discuss anything and everything Cardinal and Draft related, and let's get going!