ST. LOUIS, Mo. -- Yesterday evening, Marc Topkin from the Tampa Bay Times tweeted the following:
Yes, the St. Louis Cardinals were apparently out in full force watching Tampa Bay ace David Price throw eight dominant innings against the Astros at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. The lefty gave up just six hits and two runs while striking out 12 Astros.
It’s been a frustrating year for the Rays as they now are 29-46 this season and could be looking to trade away their best player to get back a substantial package in return.
Enter the Cardinals.
GM John Mozeliak is no dummy. He knows full well what it would cost to get a player the caliber of David Price. It would take a lot. A lot of big names would have to be moved. A lot of money would have to be spent. This is a former Cy Young award winner we’re talking about here.
The Cardinals are scuffling, as anyone who’s watched this team all season long knows. But the problem isn’t with the starting pitching. It’s with the bats. So why go after something that doesn’t address the immediate problem, you say?
Simple. Getting David Price makes the team better. And at this point in the season all you really care about is getting better. Even if it’s making a strength stronger.
It’s not like Mozeliak can order up the perfect hitter for himself and give up whatever he wants to whomever he wants and have that guy delivered to his door. There has to be someone good enough to trade for that’s on a team willing to move him. And he has to cost what the team believes to be a reasonable amount.
If a starting pitcher is what’s available, then so be it.
Now the question becomes what would the Cardinals be willing to part with? You have to assume Carlos Martinez would be at the forefront of any deal to Tampa Bay. The electric righty has been in a weird role all season long after seemingly being the best option out of spring training for a starting job.
After going back to the bullpen he quickly was relieved of his 8th inning duties and put in long relief. Now, he’s a spot starter giving guys like Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha a day off.
It wouldn’t be much of a surprise if Martinez was packaged in a blockbuster at some point. The Cardinals have an obscene amount of starting pitching depth not only at the Major League level but in the minors as well. Dealing him would be losing a luxury, not a necessity.
Carlos Martinez wouldn’t be enough to get you David Price though. More would have to be included. Oscar Taveras? Stephen Piscotty? Alex Reyes? One of the bats already here like Allen Craig or Matt Adams?
Clearly by Topkins’ tweet there are other teams involved in David Price. So the price may eventually get too rich for the Cardinals blood. Nothing is guaranteed.
But now that we’re approaching the halfway point of the regular season and the Cards are sitting in second place by a healthy margin, change is without a doubt on the table.