Lucky Seven, last-one-before-Spring-Training edition

1. What’s the most interesting storyline going into Cardinals Spring Training?

2. Other than Rasmus, which prospect are you most interested to see this spring?

3. When does Mark Mulder make his regular-season game debut this year? What about Chris Carpenter?

4. What one still-unsigned free agent would you like to see the Cardinals add?

5. As currently constituted, what’s the best team in the NL?

6. It’s a half-decent list of nominees for Record of the Year (though in general I hate the Grammys). Which one should win?

7. What’s your favorite beach anywhere?

-M.

33 Comments

1) By far, I would say, Juan Gonzalez and does he have enough to make a comeback.

2) Ryan and/or Hoffpaur.

3) Mulder should return by mid-May, so I’ll say May 12. Carpenter I’m gonna say July 30-August 7

4) Kenny Lofton. That would end this leadoff uncertainty.

5) The best? I think Arizona has the deepest rotation, but I think a lot of their big bats last year had career years, so if they come up with that production again I would say them. If not, I think that there really isn’t a best team.

6) No clue

7) Probably Cape Cod, as it is the only one I’ve been to.

1. Will Colby Rasmus make the team?
2. Hoffpauir

3. Late April for Mulder, Early July for Carp

4. None, really. If he has anything left, I’d like Reggie Sanders for his clubhouse presence

5. Mets, on paper.

7. Dingle Peninsula, Ireland

1. Will our current starting rotation be effective?
2. Joe Mather

3.Mulder doesn’t come around until late May. Carpenter will show up a week before the All-Star break.

4.Bartolo Colon

5.The Mets, unfortunately.

6.Amy Winehouse with “Rehab.” Make everyone uncomfortable.

7.Pebble Beach

1. Rasmus
2. Jaime Garcia

3. Mulder June, Carp late August

4. Kyle Lohse, for the right price

5. I don’t think it’s clear cut, so here are my playoff teams: Mets, Brewers, Rox, Ddax.

6. Foo Fighters

7. I’ve been stuck in the Midwest almost all my life, but i have seen the white sands of the Pensacola beach, very beautiful.

1. Can Rasmus make the team?

2. Chris Perez

3. First week in May, second week in August

4. None. Let’s see what we have.

5. Mets. I think Santana puts them over the top.

6. No clue

7. Only one I’ve been to is Gulf Shores and that was decades ago.

1. How the middle infield shakes out.
2. Brian Barton.

3. Mulder in mid-August; Carpenter will get one start just before the All-Star Game.

4. Kyle Lohse.

5. I think the Mets will have the best NL record, but not the pennant. Yet again.

6. I am still surprised at how much I enjoy “Rehab” by Amy Winehouse.

7. Singing Sands Beach, Manchester-by-the-Sea, on Massachusetts’ North Shore. One of only five beaches in the world where the silicon content in the sand is so high, it “sings” a musical tone when you shuffle your feet through it.

1. The one that’s “most interesting” is Colby Rasmus and his prospects for making the team. The one that the media will treat as the “best human interest story” is Gonzalez, but if that’s really the most interesting ST story, it’s gonna be a long, bad year.
2. Jaime Garcia, if and only if he’s fully healed and ready to pitch. If not, Mitchell Boggs; he’s beginning to attract notice, whether merited or not, so let’s take a careful look and find out.

3. May 20; August 10.

4. Free agents? _Retro me, Satanas_. This is a temptation that must be fought at all costs.

5. On paper, Mets. On the field, D-backs.

6. No idea.

7. A small island in the Grenadines whose name I forget. However, my memory of the beach may be unrealistically garnished by that of the astonishing babe I encountered sun-bathing there minus certain items of apparel…

1. If Tony will sacrifice his dreams of yesteryear for moving the chain properly.

2. Barton, if he counts. I’m excited that we’ve got him. Beyond him, probably Mitchell Boggs or Chris Perez about equally.

3. I’ll say April 29-ish. Carp is August 4th-ish.

4. Everyone I would’ve gambled on is gone. Josh Towers, Mark Prior, etc. Put that money towards the Ballpark Village, please? No? DeWitt’s putting it in his pocket? Too bad.

5. The Mets. They’ve got the bats and they’re got Johan and the cockfighter.

6. Foo.

7. I enjoyed Santa Monica during my business trips–and that concludes the beaches I’ve seen. How I long for Long Island’s sandy beaches.

1. It has to be the youth movement. I just hope that the mediocre veterans we signed don’t clog up the works.

2. The 5th spot in the rotation – Can Reyes finally have his break-out season?

3. Mark Mulder – I think management is keeping our expectations low about Mulder. He’ll appear in mid-April. I don’t have much faith in his effectiveness anymore, though. Please prove me wrong, Mark.

Chris Carpenter – Despite his most recent statements about his recovery, I’d be shocked to see him before August 1st. I do think he’ll be effective in his return, though.

4. Kyle Lohse, if we can get him for one or two years – He has been about a league average pitcher over the last 1-1/2 years in the NL. I know he’s asking for more years, but since it’s late in the offseason, maybe we could get him for one year.

5. NY Mets

6. Foo Fighters

7. Anything in Southern California

I misread question #2…I’ll change my answer to Perez. I’m interested to see if he will be the closer of the future, and how soon (with Izzy’s contract up at the end of this season).

1. probably the elbow of Pujols and Rasmus’ chances to make the team.

2. perez

3. third or fourth week of April.

4.Michael Jordan? I dunno.

5. Braves.

6. I couldn’t possibly care less about the Grammy’s. Sorry, Matt.

7. The only beach I have been to that I remember the name of was Bodega Bay/Beach. It’s not that nice… pretty cold, really.

PS

and Carpenter will be ready after all star break.

1. There’s not just one in my opinion, but rather 4 things I’ve been wondering: Who will be our leadoff hitter? Will it be Reyes as our 5th starter or will that be given to Wellemeyer or Thompson? Will Juan Gonzalez make the team? and how well will Matt Clement do?

2. Hoffpaur.

3. It depends on how well he recovers, I’m hoping it’s by May 1st like they want it to be.

4. Kyle Lohse, I don’t know much about him, but at least he’d be a decent 5th pitcher.

5. I really couldn’t tell you, in my opinion it’s the Cardinals, and that’s because I’m a Cardinals fan, but if we’re going by who I think is going to do the best this year in the NL then I’m going with the Mets, just because they were already a very good team and then they got Santana.

1….the outfield is by far, the most interesting storyline going into the season..will barton and rasmus play their way on to the mlb roster? will schumaker outplay either of them?
2…i’d say barton, can’t wait to see what he can do..a close second is garcia

3…i’m gonna say june for mulder and after the all star break for carpenter

4..there isn’t anyone out there that interests me now

5…i think the mets have to be considered the favorites, as much as i hate to say that

6…don’t even know haha

7…santa monica beach, been there just once but it was great..in fact the only beach i’ve ever went to

1. Letting the big guns go for the youth.
2. Ryan.

3. Mulder probably in April or May, as for Carp… I’m not sure. I’d guess anytime between July and September.

4. Stand pat.

5. I would’ve said the Cubs before the Johan trade, but now it’s the Mets… for now.

6. Don’t care.

7. I’ve been to a few beaches, but there’s none that stick out.

1. Juan Gone IF he has regained old form…otherwise it’s our the leadoff hitter, or lackthereof.
2. Bryan Anderson cause I wanna see if the hype is for real.

3. Mulder in mid May, Carp after the All-Star break.

4. Don’t know of any worth signing.

5. Mets, no doubt!

6. Foo Fighters-The Pretender

7. Morning Star beach, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. I went there on my honeymoon last year. Beautiful, soft sand, good snorkling, perfectly clear water…got a nice pic of an Iguana walking across the beach,too.

1. How our guys will battle it out in Spring Training to see who will start in the outfield and just in general, all of our young talent.
2. Joe Mather and Brendan Ryan

3. Mulder mid-May; hopefully Carp by the All-Star Break

4. Not Sure.

5. With Santana, I would have to say the Mets, but I do think the Cards are going to surprise a lot of people.

6. Not sure here either.

7. Gulf Shores, AL is beautiful (got to love Panama City Beach too!)

1) who ends up lead-off.
2) barton.

3) Mulder late may. then back on the DL in June (I’m not optimistic). Carpenter after the all-star break.

$) oops, I meant #4…

5) not the best team, but i’m intrigued to see what Torre can do in LA. as I see it, the NL has more intriguing story lines as the season opens than the AL – for the first time in a long time.

6) RECORD of the year? eh… but Amy Winehouse should win ALBUM of the year. it’s a great album, though I have to say, “Rehab” is the weakest track on the whole album, so it shouldnt win best “record.” I get so annoyed at the Grammy’s archaic nomenclature. Back when artists released 45s, “record” made sense. It doesn’t anymore. Call it “single”. Sorry for the soap-box.

7) Playas Nosara y Samara on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica are wonderful. Stateside: Pawley’s Island, SC.

1. the fact that only 1st, 3rd and c are truly settled positions, with battles everywhere else.

2. Barton

3. Mulder may 1. Carp Aug 25th.

4. I wouldn’t like to see anyone officially added, but if the young outfielders flounder, Shannon Stewert is an interesting option.

5. I really like the Phils. They score a ton of runs, play hard and with passion, and if lidge can do the job their pitching will look pretty good with that lineups support.

6. Foo

7. I’m not a beach guy, I prefer mountains and trees.

1. I’m really interested in following Mulder’s progress. To me, the success of our rotation revolves around him. Also, I was at the Springfield Cardinals’ first playoff game when Mulder made his attempted comeback last year. During the rain delay before the game, everyone in the stadium was glued to the big screen watching what Mulder was going to do. If he could come back…that would be a helluva’ story for us. I’m really pullin’ for the guy.

2. Mitchell Boggs has caught my eye – especially because the idea of growing our own dependable starting pitcher is so appealing after last year.

3. Mulder: First week of May…I also think the team is being extra cautious with him because of the possibly rushed comeback last year…but I think he’ll be ready to go by the first week of May. Carp: I ‘think’ a few weeks after the All-Star break…you can’t be too cautious with him…especially if we’re doing well.

4. No one. I actually just want to sit tight and see what we have this year before we go spending more money on gambles. We have a lot of young guys in critical years this year…I want to see what we do and don’t have before I spend more money. If we do well, this could be a great year for a big All-Star deadline trade.

5. With the Johan deal, I gotta’ go Mets…I just see them as poised to bounce back this year…but who knows?

6. I really don’t know enough about any of them…sorry.

7. And, once again, I can’t vote…haven’t been to enough beaches to compare…sorry.

1. If Juan Gonzalez has enough to make to squad,the 5th starter, or the leadoff spot.
2. Barton…I don’t think many people know much about him

3. I am not really expecting too much from Mark. After rushing his arm last season I think he will be more patient. As far as big Carp goes I think that the All-Star Break is hopeful.

4. None…unless there is a leadoff guy on the market who isn’t 40.

5. On paper the Mets, but I like the Brewer’s squad.

7. Went to Puerto Rico last year. It was unbelievable. All the beaches were awesome!

I heard somewhere the BoSox could be willing to trade Coco Crisp for a young pitcher plus… Anyone else hear anything about that? I’d trade Jamie Garcia and Anks for Crisp. But that’s just me.

That’s giving up a lot for only one year for Crisp. I know we need a leadoff hitter, but I don’t think we need one that badly.

1.) Albert’s elbow.

2.)Barton. I really hope he can solve the leadoff issue.

3.) Mulder, late may. Carp? Who knows? Hopefully both guys can pitch, but I have little faith in MM after the debacles the last two seasons.

4.)Kyle Lohse. Jeff Suppan numbers, good age, innings eater. On a staff that is looking at a third year guy to be its ace, we need a guy that is dependable.

5.) Their lineup’s not real impressive, but Arizona’s great pitching core has got to make them a top tier team.

6.)Don’t know.

7.) Not a beach guy, but do enjoy North Padre Island; not especially beautiful, but rugged, and rather undisturbed.

Who says it would only be for one year? I’m not a fan of these one year deals anyways.I’d want to keep him for multiple years, obviously.

That’s a lot to give to get a career 280/329/409 hitter, when we’ve got a guy in Ankiel that has the ability to get to that level and beyond, plus he’s cost controlled.

Ankiel is a better player than Crisp today, plus he’s cheaper. No way I’d give him up for Crisp, never mind throwing in another player to boot.

-M.

Amen.

1. Colby Rasmus
2. Barton

3. Mulder end of May, Carpenter won’t pitch…hope I’m wrong

4. I’d like to see them sign Loshe if we could get him him for a good deal

5. With Santana, gotta go with the Mets

6. Foo Fighters

7. Ocean City, MD, so many memories

6.

I’m shocked that Loshe hasnt been signed yet. But I guess that people realize that the 2nd best starter in the FA market this year still isn’t that good.

1. I would say the Juan Gonzalez story. I know he wont make the team, but its still interesting to see if he makes it down the first baseline without pulling a hammy. Ryan Ludwick will easily be the superior player.
2. Does this mean prospect to be seen in St. Louis, or just any prospect period? I would like to see Chris Perez in St. Louis. I would love to see him take over the closer’s role. In general, I would like to see Pete Kozma, and see if he is the guy we will be seeing at SS in a few years.

3. I haven’t seen Mulder’s medical report, but it sounds like he is less restricted than last year. So, I will say May 1st or so. I don’t expect anything. Chris Carpenter sounds like he is doing well also, but I don’t think he will be rushed. I would say August 1st at the earliest. Once again, I don’t expect anything.

4. This may be over the top, but imagine what it would do for our line-up. Barry Bonds. Have him play left and put Duncan in right. Have Ankiel play center, and send Rasmus down to Triple-A to get some fine tuning. Bonds could bat 4th, behind Pujols, and Glaus 5th. Have Duncan occupy the 2 hole and Ankiel 6th. That, to me, would be a pretty deadly line-up 2-6. I like feedback. Let me know what you think.

5. I really am torn between a few teams. I like the D-Backs, Dodgers, Brewers, and Cubs. I really think the D-backs pitching and defense will be the best, but I think the Dodgers will have the best offense/defense combo to carry them to the best record. I could be wrong, but after looking around, its the conclusion I came to.

6. For Record of the Year I would have chose the Timberlake track, but for Album I would have chose the Foo Fighters because I like Dave Grohl and I dont like any of the other artists.

7. I love Morehead City beach in North Carolina. Very nice!

GO CARDS!

Anks MAY be a better player now (that’s arguable), but we have a plethora of good outfielders and power-type hitters. We have no leadoff or speed-type players, and would lose nothing defensively in a trade like that. PLUS I think it’s idiotic to bring up career numbers for either of these guys…they haven’t had a career yet!

I don’t see Crisp being a good enough hitter to put his speed to good use. He’s had an OPS+ over 100 only 2 times, and most recently he has had an awful one(77 in 06 and 83 last season). He doesn’t get on base a whole lot (highest OBP is .345), he has an average batting average at best. What is the appeal with him?

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