AK open thread

Leave your thoughts here —

Good move? Bad move?

What should they do next?

Etc etc.

KEEP IT CIVIL, but otherwise have at it. I’m fascinated by the whole deal.



I’m really perplexed. Just giving away $4million with little back-up on board makes no sense to me. I’ll admit, I was down on the lack of a pick-up at 2B all along. Wouldn’t the prudent thing be to sign someone to play the position before you jetison the refuse? This is another puzzling about face from mgmt … we want help at 2B, nope, Adam is our man, Adam is ready to face the challenges in spring training, Adam is gone. Huh? Please tell me there is someone about to be signed with this news. Last time I knew, the game called for a player at 2B. Three months ago we had three who could play there – all are gone. Anyone planning this thing, or do the Cards play eight in the field this year?

After further thought; we wont miss the bat, but the defense is an issue. I understand the Cards have petitioned to allow Albert and the pitcher to use the Bud Light Drinkability glove and not field anyone at 2B this year.

This is all starting to come together…My guess is he’s basically refusing to play for Tony, and they don’t want to waste a roster spot on a disgruntled player who won’t play hard. Other clubs probably know this due to Tony’s and the club’s tendency to air dirty laundry in public. Why would anyone trade for him when they can guess that we may release him, and any new team can pay him the league minimum? Our GM is getting played like a game of hop scotch! He’s awful. And now we know why we didn’t pursue Hudson or anyone else. They were trying to convince Adam to stay and play nice with Tony, and they knew if it didn’t work they’d be out almost $4 mil with no compensation.
So now we, as fans, are stuck HOPING like Tony does that Skip will be good at 2nd. Or that Brenden Ryan will step up, or another young guy. In the mean time we let Aaron Miles go and released Kennedy, our two primary 2nd baggers the last couple seasons.
I’m completely and utterly disgusted at management… top to bottom. I will not be in Busch Stadium this year. Nor will my family. Not even for the All Star game, as planned.

Why automatically assume Kennedy is refusing to play for LaRussa? Kennedy doesn’t have any power. He’s just a player.

I see it the other way around. It looks more like Tony didn’t want the guy around when spring training started.

On top of that, the Cardinals have never spent a ton of money for a second baseman. They always scrape the bottom of the barrel and hope things turn out OK. The one time (in recent years) they went away from that philosophy, they ended up overpaying for a guy who stunk up the joint and then had the audacity to complain about his playing time.

I’m glad Kennedy is gone. I’d rather have any combination of Schumaker, Thurman, Green, Ryan, or Barden instead.

Read what I said, homey. I said, and I quote myself, “I’m GUESSING…”

We’re all guessing.🙂

On Bernie’s radio show, Mozeliak is spinning it like the second base job was going to be a competition and they felt Kennedy wouldn’t be too happy with that.

I’ll concur, Mr. Seals. I’m willing to bed we’d get the same defense and more offense out the person who wins the spot in spring training. Yes, it’s too bad we just blew 3.6 million – if he gets picked up – but we probably won’t spend any more on a decent upgrade.

Cardinals. Second base. More than 2 years? Get outta here!

Bed? Bet.

would it not be civil if i said we need to check mos’ creds? then said lets run him out of town on a rail like in “o brother where for art thou”. or maybe do like my high school coach used to, and cup check him with a baseball bat. for real, i didn’t want kennedy here anyway, but this is more BS, and some horrible business moves. has anyone signed miles yet? can you guys here that……..off in the distance……i think… yes it is…….listen real close you can here jockity laughing his @$& off.

What baffles me on this move is how long it took and why the Cards haven’t done squat to try to sign someone to take his place. Why didn’t the Cards go after Lopez or Miles when they had the chance???

The front office is really starting to tick me off. I’ve been flabbergasted as to how and why they’ve made some of the decisions they have this offseason. I’m starting to wonder if the front office actually cares about winning and the fans, and not just about making millions.

Must say I was surprised cause I thought all the reporting was that AK was to be part of a competition. Guess he lost early in the game, hunh?. That said, it makes sense to me: it’s a team sport, and AK indicated some time ago this probably wasn’t his team. Doubt that endeared him to TLR. So…better living through chemistry–or at least better baseball through better chemistry in the clubhouse.

OK, seals. Here’s MY point. It’s not JUST about the production that Kennedy would or wouldn’t have provided. I agree with all that. He won’t be missed. It’s about management’s total failure this offseason to A.)Trade or sign ANY 2nd baseman, either starter or backup and B.) to handle Kennedy’s situation in time to have a chance to sign a replacement.
And I have a question. How many players have to leave St.Louis angry before fans and ownership realize it has a LOT to do with the manager? The manager is the leader. He leads by example, and he’s a terrible example. He’s a terrible communicator, as evidenced with Scott Rolen and ASG ’07. He’s petty, as evidenced by his bad mouthing Rolen to the media in PRESEASON. This latest thing with Kennedy has to be rooted in a TLR feud. Kennedy was set to be the main guy if he performed, and his only public complaint was about playing time. Hmmm…Wasn’t that Scott Rolen’s problem with TLR? Wasn’t that Ray King’s problem with TLR? Wasn’t that Steve Kline’s problem with TLR? You guys can throw his stats around all you want. TLR is, in my estimation, the main reason for the problems in the clubhouse and with individual players.

and let’s not forget Pujols and the All-Star Game… my sense is that w/o Duncan it’s not at all clear that TLR’s the genius he’s so often touted to be… what position player has repeatedly flourished under TLR who wasn’t already superstar or star material? And, it seems to me that each year high-potential young players fail to live up to that potential in StL.


That article pretty much sums up Kline’s problem with TLR. In regards to the ’07 ASG, I believe you meant Pujols and not Rolen, that was a bonehead move, I’ll give you that one. I’m not sure on Ray King, all I remember is when he was used his last season he got hit hard and was rarely used after that. I don’t recall him having a problem with TLR other than not being played as much as he would have liked. I’ll never understand why some Cardinals fans can’t stand TLR. Aside from the numbers, he’s always going to play the matchups and do so with little regard for injuring a players ego. If certain players can’t check their ego’s at the door then that’s their problem. I’d rather have a manager who holds to their own convictions right or wrong, than some pushover who consistently coddles his players. It is important to know who is running the team after all. This isn’t the time or forum for that discussion though.

This Kennedy thing is crazy though, agreed on that slforre77. This should have been handled long ago. What took place between now and the past two weeks? Get on that Matthew.

My take on the situation goes this way.
Kennedy wanted out. I don’t care why. The Cards could not find a taker for his $4 mil salary. So they also could not afford to keep Lopez or Miles. I think that if they were able to trade Kennedy they would have made an effort to sign Lopez or Miles. The Cards are not in a position to pay a lot of money to two 2B to split time.
Looking back in hindsight I think Mo should have tried harder to trade Kennedy and in the deal to ante up for part of Kennedy’s salary. As it is, Kennedy is gone and Cards are still out $4 mil. But maybe Mo did try. We might never know.
Now the 2B situation is very muddy.
Maybe a platoon system? Skip and a righty because Skip does not hit lefty pitching.
This spring is going to be either interesting or frustrating.

I am no expert, but when did it become hard to decide whether or not to play a kids game and get paid $4 million dollars a year to do it? I am going to be damn lucky to recoup even a quarter of that amount in my 401k by the time I retire and I need to read about this stuff? Who wouldn’t want to play whatever position needed for as long as needed in order to play a game for their everyday job?
Money doesn’t buy championships, but a lot of luck with good baseball players playing together as a team do (as recently evidenced by the SB Champion Steelers). The Cards had a $100 million payroll last year (more than the Phillies and in a much smaller market) and the Rays had a $42 million payroll. The Rays were a much better team with less than half the payroll. I could care less about losing AK due to not getting the playing time he wanted. I would rather pay my money to watch someone at the position that wanted to play there because it would help the team and not their ego. I was kinda hoping that we would bring Eck back to play 2nd for a year or 2, but I will still watch the team play the game whoever mans the position.

I wasn’t overly excited about Kennedy this year. A little perplexed why this position hasn’t been a stronger focus of the team under LaRussa. Unless I’m forgetting someone, it seems like we haven’t had a real constant at this position since Oquendo.

It should make the spring fun, though. The results of last spring’s outfield competition were better than anybody thought. Who knows?!

yeehaaa! one good decision ths winter !! Kennedy is a sub-par player – and his heart is not with this ballclub. money does not matter (to me, guys) – this club has ridiculous money – it is just frugal (being nice) – and calls itself smart. fingers crossed – and hope we get above 4th place. god bless.

Yeah I remember that incident with Kline well, akbled. That incident was only the beginning of their differences. But it doesn’t matter. The fact remains that TLR is hard to get along with. There’s a middle ground between stubbornly sticking to your own ways and being a total pushover. You can manage your own style and not be so rigid and stubborn-headed. And the other reason I and some other fans can’t stand LaRussa is exactly what you stated.
” he’s always going to play the matchups and do so with little regard for injuring a players ego.” Except I would change it to “…with little regard for the situation in the game.” I think back to a game against the Giants in 2005, I think, when TLR left Jason Marquis in the game to bat with two outs in the 8th inning of a 1-1 game. Marquis was a decent hitter for a pitcher and bats lefty vs. the righty pitcher. Marquis promptly grounded out, then went back to the mound after having thrown 120 or so pitches and got shelled to lose the game. TLR’s index card said Marquis was a good bet, but baseball knowledge would tell you that he’a a pitcher and not adept at hitting in late game situations with the game on the line. I don’t like ALWAYS playing the numbers. I prefer a manager who communicates with his players and goes with the hot hand, regardless of the L/R matchup.

It is really hard to be civil when we are consistently fed a line of BS . Until now I’ve felt that the non-moves have been prudent cautious and I think they’ve made some good non-moves (Sheets is an example). But it seems to me that this has been brewing for a long time and they did nothing to cover the 2B spot. Why in the blazes didn’t they cover themselves. Hudson is still out there and the market is slow, maybe they can get him cheaper than expected. I just don’t get this move and it costs them another $4mil in salary. I’m really tired of being lied to—“We are going to be aggressive and creative”, “Our top priority is a closer.”, Blah, Blah, Blah.

I’m trying to stay positive about the 09 season but it is hard to be optimistic when you have a starting rotation that still has at least one hole in it, the Ace hasn’t really pitched in 2 years and no one knows for sure whether or not he will pitch this year, and now the 2B position (arguably one of the four most important defensive positions on the field) will be a competition among guys who don’t routinely play there with the guy who seems to be the first name that pops up with the media hasn’t played there since high school and then self-admittedly was better in the OF. And more importantly the front office DID NOTHING ABOUT IT. Is this inactivity because the club really is broke?

i think there is a deeper problem at work here. there are just too many instances of one hand not knowing what the other is saying. contradictions everywhere. who exactly is running this team, is it mo, dewitt, tlr, or no one at all? it all seems so dysfunctional. as fans, we tend to get caught up in daily developments and the story of the hour, but trying to look at the bigger picture i see way too many players leaving unhappy or just not coming here in the first place. why? why would a professional ballplayer take less money to not play here? we make an offer and it hangs out there for two months and the player finally takes a lesser deal somewhere else. who did not see that coming after a month of no answers. yet the team took no action to produce a plan b. it’s like if there first plan doesn’t work, there is no plan b. this year has brought very little with the exception of the lohse signing. it’s hard to consider kahlil more than a band aid on a recurring middle infield problem. there is no one in the system anywhere near ready to play either middle infield position, and not even anyone a couple of years away. yet the team makes no move except to cut players, no miles, no lopez, no looper, no springer, etc., and most importantly no replacements. there is an interesting list of players who have signed minor league deals that is up on mlb.com. there are eight pitchers and among them two lefties, glendon raush and every day eddie. were they not worth as much as royce ring? i just hope i’m really dense and mo is working a plan that will result in a contender. right now, i don’t see it.

On the face of it, this is a shock, mostly because of the timing and the contradictory leaks and reports over the past several weeks and months… But in fairness to management, I think we need to wait for the other shoe to drop. Hopefully, it drops without too big a “clunk”. Ever the optimist, I prefer to think that this means a deal is in the works either for Orlando Hudson or Dan Uggla. I DO think, as I’ve been saying for months, that giving Schumaker a real tryout at 2nd to see if he can transition back to the infield at the major league level is a good thing regardless of whether or not they deal for someone. He’s a superb athlete, smart, leads off, hits, great work ethic (I understand he’s already working with Oquendo on footwork, pivots and throwing), well-liked by everybody and covers center beautifully. We NEED him somehere in the line up…and it’s pretty obvious that Rasmus will make the club this year, unlike last, and that he’s the heir apparant in center. I like the Uggla possibility particularly…The Fish need an outfielder and a first baseman, having just lost both…This makes Duncan more valuable to them than to most clubs as his natural position is first and though the outfield is still sorta problematic…the power, pre-hurt, will make strange routes to routine fly balls less of an adventure…but only if the power comes back! The shoe drops with a BIG “clunk”, though, if there’s stuff coming out about bad blood and ill will between AK and TLR/MO and the fact that this all came up only days after news releases made it clear that while the everyday job was nominally his going into the season, it was only his if he could keep it, lends credibility to such a possibility! This speculation leads to a last thought about the curious timing…As I understand it, Mozeliak had an all but done deal with Denver for Holliday until the media got hold of the rumor and that killed it. You could certainly speak more knowledgibly to this than I, Matt. If there’s any truth to that, I can’t say I blame Mozeliak for playing his Cards a LOT closer to his chest if there’s a deal in the works for a second baseman and maybe more as we still need a fifth starter and a bat at number four behind Albert! I’m not as worried about a closer as many are…and not at all about third…but we DO need a four and a five starter to get us deeper into games than last year. And if Carpenter can’t make it back…well, we NEED pitching!

Feeling frisky … since Manny stinks in the outfield, how about trying HIM at 2B? Albert and the pitcher can still use the Drinkability gloves! This whole situation makes me laugh … if I didn’t, I would break all my bobbleheads. Perhaps our double play combo will be be Green to Green? Is Grudzelaniakhagfsren (sp?) still unsigned?

I will not be at all surprised if we wait until March, when some other team casts off yet another disgruntled underperformer. Cards management will hail them as our next star second-baseman.

I’m such a fan of O-Dawg. I don’t care about the injury risk, he’s one of a short list of players who I’d throw money at despite the risk, but it’s a moot point anyway. The Cardinals will not improve the team with a clear solution these days, they’ll let other teams do such things, even at bargain bin prices.

The Kennedy release bothers me due to the above. We can’t take a risk on Orlando Hudson for $6-8 million for a year, but we can literally pay a guy $4 mil for not showing up ever again? Look, I wasn’t a Kennedy fan, but security is definitely a plus. I love letting the youngsters play, but let’s say all 500 of them are busts at the ML level (for argument’s sake), who has the most experience? Ryan? Lord help us. Kennedy’s glove was pretty awesome last year, if nothing else. Just another showing of how TLR really runs this team with childish antics. Letting Miles walk showed a little bit of courage from Mo, but this negates that.

I say good riddance. He was becoming a problem anyway. What angers me is I know that Mozeliak and Co. will not go out and get an Orlando Hudson type player. So we will be stuck in mediocrity another year. Just wait until TLR and Dunc get tired of this do-as-little-as-possible front office. We’ll be the laughingstock of the NL Central.

confusing to say the least. why wait until now? i personally am indifferent towards kennedy, i think that even if he had been with the team he would have been a bench utility player. i think it was pretty unprofessional to release him after the bulk of the off-season is over, especially after they thanked him for professional behavior in asking for a trade. i think the main reason behind this is to keep the younger players content. why mess around with a player that you know that you do not want, when you’ve got seven or eight different players within the organization who would benefit more and produce about the same. I guess the bulk of what i am saying is that this would have been a great decision in november or december.

Is Leon Durham still out there??? He could be had relatively cheap for one year. His fielding wouldn’t be all terrible and we could use the bat. Skip could still relieve him at 2b from time to time.

I suspected when Schu started taking grounders. Not that Schu would be the starting 2B, but rather, that TLR just wanted to know exactly where he stood with Schu’s 2B ability (or lack thereof).

This sets the stage for O. Hudson. This isn’t hindsight, either. I wrote about it previous to the AK dump.

What a chance for ownership to finally play the hero, but more importantly, do the right thing for the team.

chetthejet (this typepad crud is messing up my monicker)

Maybe, now that they’ve dumped (on) Kennedy, they can use that money to pay Ankiel and Ludwig… or to sign other players… oh, wait, no they can’t because they didn’t save anything but TLR’s need to continue to be unaccommodating to his players… and, as a number of us have noted before, who’d want to play for the Cards, given the teams recent treatment of players, what was I thinking?!

It really feels to me like players would rather not play here at the moment… and I’m not talking about preferring to play for the Angels, Cubs, Yankees or Dodgers, I’m thinking of the Astros, D’Backs, Indians or Blue Jays. (And, no, I don’t have direct evidence that this is the case… just a strong sense of a change in the tenor and feel of the club… the closest thing I have is the statements Green made once traded, he sounded more resigned than excited at least to me.)

It was a smart move. Last year, he was losing starts to players that were earning them. Instead of either stepping up his game to earn the time back or accepting the not-as-glamorous-but-oh-so-important bench roll, he asked to be traded to a team where he might play everyday….during the season, I might add. In my book (and evidently in Tony’s), that makes him appear to be a guy who puts himself ahead of his team.
Kennedy should not be bitter about this. He’s still getting his paycheck and now has the freedom to find that team he can play for everyday. I wish him all the luck and look forward to seeing the hungry kids fight over second base.

I am really get sick and tired of the cards and John just releasing people! I mean come on they’ve done more of releasing that acquiring!! John needs to pull his head out of his *** and do something good for the team for once, like for example, trade adam kennendy, chris duncan, and rick ankiel for someone or something that is better than all three of them. Forget the freaking closer frenzy search what they need to do is get some defensive help around 2nd, short, and for the time being 3rd

For those interested: Of all the things about Tony LaRussa, the one thing that gets brought up most is ONE stat…career wins. As of now he sits in third place behing Connie Mack (3731) and John McGraw (2763) with 2461 wins. That stat gets tossed around as if it’s the only one that matters when speaking of TLR. But let’s look at some others, if stats are really so telling. TLR is 36th all-time in win percentage, behind guys such as Joe Torre, Charlie Manuel, Ron Gardenhire, Mike Scioscia, Bobby Cox, Davey Johnson, and Sparky Anderson just to name a few. TLR has taken 2 teams to a WS, going to 5 total. He won 2 and was swept in 4 games in the other 3. Of managers with a comparable resume, only Bobby Cox has been to as many WS and won fewer. And I believe the Braves were swept only once by the juggernaut Yankees of 1999. They went to seven games in two WS and six games in the other. TLR also holds third place in career losses with 2146. Some will say that comes with the territory, and they’re right on a basic level. But Connie Mack is the only other manager in history to hold the same place on the all-time losses list (First) as the wins list. I guess that is indicative of longevity.
John McGraw is 2nd in wins and 5th in losses. Bobby Cox is 4th in wins and 6th in losses. Those stats lead to the higher win %. In career wins over .500 or better teams Bobby Cox is 3rd and TLR is 13th!
So…What’s my point with all this? Stats only tell a small part of the story. It’s also about the human element. How a manager handles egos and adversity, rookies and veterens. TLR is severely lacking in the people management skills department. Hence the reason we’ve had so many players leaving St.Louis disgruntled. I fear that as long as TLR is in St.Louis we will be watching a patchwork team year in and year out.

Oh and I love how we not only didn’t sign Braden Looper, but we AGAIN sat back and watched him sign with a division rival. Way to go Mo and Co.

rbchatter: it’s not clear that you read Kennedy’s comments last summer… he said that, every time he had a good game or two at the bat and feel like he was building momentum in that aspect of the game, TLR w/o anything other than a change in the line-up card would sit him for ten days destroying any momentum he might have been building. Under those conditions, plus the fact that it was pretty clear that the team was bringing in other players and trying out younger players (most of whom didn’t do much better than Kennedy), he respectfully – not disrupting the team, as management noted at the time – asked to be traded. Its not that he didn’t want to be here its that the team/TLR made it clear that he wasn’t central to their plans for this year.

Did you notice that the team then did not resign any of the more veteran players who also played 2nd base and that there is little evidence from the quality of the play of the younger players that they’re going to be better than Kennedy. I don’t think he was the be all and end all at 2nd base but this situation is not his fault.

come on, you guys. st louis used to have a manager for the birds who used the same ideals as tony. he would play the best player for the situation. whitey used to get second guessed all the time also. it’s easy to sit here and dissect what tony should have done because it already happened, we know the outcome. i don’t agree with tony most oof the time either, but he has won all those games, and not with the yankees or the braves in the 90s. tony did it with mid market teams period. he’s good at what he does and that is why he gets paid stupid amounts of money to be the BOSS, not the babysitter for crybaby millionaires. we all hate to see our favorite players go, but that’s life. i was so sad when i realized ozzie would no longer man the field, but i had to be honest with myself and admit he was not the same player he was 3 years prior. i did not take on a life long hatred for tony just because him and ozzie did not get along. is there anyone here that can honestly say that you wish we had scott rolen last year instead of troy? despite the relationship with tony scott was a hole in our lineup. had tony played him in the playoff game that supposedly started this whole mess, i believe we lose that game, due to the fact that redbeard plays the pivital role in our victory. scott was hurt, his bat was struggling to say the least, he should have been a team player and sat himself. my opinion, if mo provided tony with good solid tools to work with, we would see a drop in the position rotation that goes on so much. either way i can’t go into my workplace and tell my boss what he should be doing, and that goes the same for these players. respect authority, hit, run, catch, throw, and shut up.

Yes, manor. We’ve been through all of those arguments before. And while they are relevant, they aren’t the only aspects of this situation. Do you remember Whitey running off good players with a standoffish attitude? I don’t think anyone is trying to refute his numbers, but as I said it’s not just about numbers. You can still manage in your own style without being a stubborn-headed, stand-offish jerk.

new theme. Looper is reportedly to sign with the Brewers on Thursday for $4.75 mil. If I remember right, he made $5.5 last year with the Cards.
Why didn’t Mo go after him? Really puzzled and confused and getting more frustrated every day.

Kennedy quit on the team at the end of the season after his playing time was cut back and wanted out. There is no way Larussa could’ve kept him on this team. We are so much better off with this move. I just can’t believe that we couldn’t get any kind of trade for Kennedy. In defense of AK, It never seemed like Tony gave him a chance. His playing time was so sporadic that he could never get hot. His defense was always solid but I think we have plenty of options that will do just as good. I would love to see Brendan Ryan have a good spring as well as Skip and see those two platoon. We need Skip’s bat in the leadoff spot. And if Ryan can show some consistent hitting I could see him as a good leadoff threat with his speed.

(I’m disappointed the whole mess), but for consideration and accuracy, TLR also received criticism on AK’s first year back as a Cardinal for giving him to long to sort things out in the lineup when his bat showed no sign of improvement. Once AK’s new baseline was established, he was treated by-situation like any other 2B glove on the roster.

I admit to being flabbergasted that this FO thinks they can maintain revenues by fielding a team with no established 2B, 3B, or closer, and with **** who hit .213 last year (“but for power”!). I predict a lot of empty seats except for the All-Star Game, and i hope that DeWitt is preparing to sell this team to someone committed to winning. I get the strong feeling that he and Mo are trying to anger La Russa enough to make him quit and thus save $4.25 million/ year. La Russa does have an out clause without cause in his contract.
I found your comment in the “Way Gone” section of your analysis re: Isringhausen moving on interesting. I agree that Izzy would be better off in a friendlier environment, but I believe that Dunca has deliberately poisoned the well for him with remarks like “I really would like to have him back in camp if he could pitch but that doesn’t seem to be possible.” No team will even sign him to a minor league contract with comments like that. It is no secret that La Russa can’t stand him and wanted to get rid of him, but why would his “friend” Duncan do this to him? Has Izzy given up on trying to rehab and try to get to save #300? He sure seemed eager to try as little as a month ago!

I can’t believe we lost Miles to the Cubs!! The Cards sell out most games, income is good, why can’t we make good trades like other teams? We’re always needing pitchers and instead pursuing some banged-up guy or some lefty that still needs work. Miles was a GREAT utility player!! HELLO management….we seem to love our team more than you do.
If it’s not about money than maybe Manny wouldn’t be such a bad idea…..pujols, molina, ludwick, ankiel, schumaker….at least give us another bat if we don’t have the pitching!! That would be fun to watch!! Quit trading our good players for junk!

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