Oh how soon we forget
With the trade deadline looming, fans and columnists alike are once again clamoring for Mozeliak to make a big move. This time involving the home town kid David Freese.
This season David Freese is hitting .282 with 5 HRs and 26 RBI’s. He is nearing the end of arbitration and could fetch above average value on the market.
I get it.
But am I just supposed to forget 2011? Am I supposed to forget that he was an All-Star last season? David Freese single handily won a world championship in 2011. This is a new to me. I haven’t seen the fans pick on Freese until now. Apparently he got a rain check last year, but now the fans want more. Like Holliday, David has been able to avoid major scrutiny this season because of the large offensive success. Some fans are arguing that there is no room now that Kolten Wong is ready to take over the 2nd base job. That would mean the Cards move Matt Carpenter to 3rd and play a light infield.
I will always believe that the Cardinal’s would rather have power at the corner infield spots. I love Matt Carpenter, but I love him at 2nd base not 3rd.
Let’s take a deep breath here and think about it.
Can the Cardinals go light in the middle infield?
Maybe but the Cardinals rank 25th in HRs this season. They ranked 17th last year and without Freese’s 20 they would have ranked 22nd. Power can bail you out when nothing else is going for you one night. But the fans see Cliff Lee and start salivating.
The REAL argument would be the internal 3rd base options in the organization right now:
Stephen Piscotty: Just promoted to Springfield, I haven’t gotten a chance to see him play. He had 9 HR in 264 AB at Palm Beach this season and shows some real raw power potential. A Stanford product, Stephen has always had a high average and that stems from his quick bat. He was a plus arm as a former pitcher. His defensive foot work needs improvement in the hot corner and there is some plate discipline issues. It will all ride on his power potential and if he figures out how to drive the ball more, then he could become an above average starter for years to come.
Carson Kelly: Maybe the most exciting 2 way player in the organization, Kelly has settled in at 3rd base playing for Quad Cities. Kelly is very young and represents the farthest from the big leagues on this list. However he has a PLUS PLUS arm, once again coming from his pitching talent. He is a very steady defender and could develop into a plus one. He has a very strong, compact frame and also has good raw power potential. It’s too early to tell where he’ll project but he’s off to a good start.
Patrick Wisdom: Playing in Peoria, Patrick is by far the best defender on this list. He projects as a plus plus defender with a great arm. Patrick is perhaps the highest rated 3rd base prospect in the organization. He has the highest power potential out of the 3 but has batting average concerns and is hitting only .224 this season. If he can figure it out, then he could become something special.
So there you have it, 3 options for the Cardinals to consider. Are any of these the answer? None of them jump out to me as nationally ranked prospects but no doubt all these guys have good potential. With these cost controlled players on the way, it is THIS that represents a problem for Freese and the organization.
On that October night in 2011, Freese was married to this organization and it would be difficult to see him leave. I think the fans need to calm down about his stats this season and just remember who we are talking about here.
Baseball America and Baseball Reference