ST. LOUIS (BaseballStL) -- This is the time of the year when teams need to make a decision. What are your chances of getting into the playoffs and making a run? If you like those chances, how much do you give up to give yourself the optimal chance of making that run successful?
GM John Mozeliak elected to remain relatively quiet and make a move that addressed a need...albeit a minor one.
RHP Edward Mujica's 4.38 ERA this season doesn't scream impact addition on the surface. The Cards weren't going for a core player here. They were shopping in the inexpensive aisle of the trade deadline sale.
What Mujica brings is something similar to what Octavio Dotel brought last year at the deadline. No, he's not a seasoned veteran at age 28...but he's got excellent numbers versus right-handed batters.
Righties have hit just .211 off him this year while lefties have hit .270 off Mujica.
I would imagine having 3 lefties on the roster (Mark Rzepczynski, Brian Fuentes, Barret Browning) makes having a right-handed specialist easier to handle.
If you were to gauge how much better the Cards got at the trade deadline you'd have to put it on the minor side. Yes, Mujica fills a need. But it's nowhere near the level of what the Reds did.
RHP Jonathan Broxton is a bona fide closer who gives Cincinnati an embarrassment of riches in the bullpen. Aroldis Chapman, Sean Marshall...now Broxton?
That's 3 pitchers with flat-out disgusting ERAs. 1.45 (Chapman), 2.27 (Broxton) and 2.61 (Marshall).
Bullpen wasn't a need for the Reds to begin with. Now? If you don't have the lead versus them after 6 innings...good luck coming back. They've got 3 closer-quality pitchers ready to take on the 7th, 8th and 9th innings.
The Cards are already trailing by 7 games in the NL Central division. Coming back and winning this thing just got a whole lot tougher for the Redbirds.
Good thing 2 wild card teams get into the playoffs now...