Well, no one can say the Cardinals are being cheap now, I suppose.
After reportedly agreeing to a four-year deal with lefty reliever Brett Cecil (the Cardinals do not announce signings until they have been made official) for a touch more than $30 million, the organization is showing just how much they intend on getting back into the race for the National League Central.
Yahoo! Sports first reported the deal between the Cardinals and Brett Cecil, who has played with the Toronto Blue Jays for his entire 8-year career.
Count me among those who are not quite sure how much value the Cardinals will get from this signing. Cecil is a failed starter who moved to a relief role in 2012 and took off in 2013.
From 2013-2015, the Maryland native had an ERA under three each season and an opponent’s OPS of no higher than .627. Cecil was an All Star in 2013, as well.
But this past season was different.
The lefty’s ERA ballooned to 3.93 in just 36.2 innings due to an injury early in the season. He rebounded nicely but most of his peripheral numbers were down. It makes sense the Cardinals would bet on him given the state of their left-handed relief corps (Zach Duke gone for the season and Tyler Lyons gone for a few months).
Four years though?
For a reliever?
A reliever who’s not even a closer? That’s the market, folks.
That’s what it costs to get a bona fide left-handed reliever nowadays who can bring flexibility to your bullpen. A guy like that used to cost two years, maybe three if you felt desperate. Now it takes four in order to jump the market and get him to sign before Thanksgiving.
When the Chicago Cubs not just pass you but zoom their way to the top and leave you in the dust it’s almost expected for the Cardinals to take a different approach. They have money. We know that. They offered David Price and Jason Heyward nearly $400 million combined last off-season.
They spent roughly $80 million on Mike Leake.
Free agents typically cost nothing but money so it’s fitting the Cards go that route for now. I’m excited to see them get aggressive and change the status quo. Will it make a bit of difference in the end?
Well, I guess that’s something we won’t be able to answer for another few months right?
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