January 26, 2023

Willson Contreras is a Cardinal, and the Cubs let it happen

Wilson Contreras

Wilson Contreras
Picture: Getty Visuals

The St. Louis Cardinals uncovered their alternative for now-retired catcher Yadier Molina, agreeing to terms with Willson Contreras on a five-12 months, $87 million offer. Just after refusing to go Contreras at the trade deadline, or spend him, the past remaining placement player from the Chicago Cubs Planet Series group will now don the birds on bats and Cardinal purple.

The go is a large get for the Cardinals, who were articles with Molina’s offense-driving-the-plate tradeoff, even with the team’s bats delivering three runs in two postseason video games — equally losses to Philadelphia. Albert Pujols’ swan music genuinely is what gained them the NL Central, and they’ll have to switch his production, as properly.

Thinking about Contreras’ very best calendar year was hardly greater than Pujols’ final campaign, another bat — ideally a DH — would go a extended way. The farm method carries on to place guys in the lineup who seem like probable all-stars, only to hit nothing at all but a wall when opposing pitching staffs get a scouting report.

Which is a further aspect in this. Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt have been much and absent the team’s very best posture gamers given that arriving in St. Louis, and it proceeds the pattern of the farm program failing to build consistent supporting gamers. Save for the pandemic season, some mixture of Arenado, Goldschmidt, or Marcel Ozuna have been the major two on the group in RBI.

The failures of Tyler O’Neill, Dylan Carlson, Paul DeJong, and many others don’t give St. Louis fans a lot of hope for Brendan Donovan and Nolan Gorman at any time reaching their possible.

Lousy enhancement also may be why hitting mentor Jeff Albert stepped down just after the season. Properly, that and Harrison Bader smacking a bajillion postseason home runs immediately after remaining traded to the Yankees, and Kolten Wong discovering some semblance of consistency in Milwaukee.

Contreras is a proven contributor who will come into a clubhouse with sound management at the best, and must be in a position to continue his form no matter of hitting coach, as was the situation for Arenado or Goldschmidt.

The point that he comes over from the Cardinals’ most hated rival is just an included reward. In 95 vocation games towards St. Louis, Contreras slashed .249/.368/.441, with 74 hits, 15 of them homers, and 47 RBI. Those people figures are not mind-blowing, but every significant household operate feels like 5 towards a loathsome rival.

I’d say it tends to make up for Jason Heyward leaping ship from St. Louis to Chicago in 2016, but Jason Heyward and his deal produced up for Jason Heyward jumping ship. For the Cubs, $87 million doesn’t appear to be like significantly, viewing as they just compensated $68 million for Jameson Taillon, a backend commencing pitcher in an by now crowded rotation.

Chicago did land Cody Bellinger on a one particular-12 months, cost-free-demo deal, although, and is rumored to be medium-sized match hunting with sights set on Carlos Correa or Dansby Swanson. Who appreciates how the Contreras saga would’ve fallen if the Cubs moved him at the deadline, as rumor had it, but inaction and restricted pockets from the front place of work led to this regrettable result. They did not even appease the prospect perverts by moving him for scraps.

Contreras could’ve continue to finished up in the shadow of the Arch by way of an additional club, and Chicago could’ve prevented culpability, but in this article we are.