Facts are facts. The Cardinals finished 17.5 games behind the Cubs. The Cardinals won 86 games as Chicago put 103 wins in their column. That is a large gap. A big hole. To fill that hole a big effort that has a long shot chance to succeed would have to be undertaken. Many fans are freaking out and have doubts the Cardinals want to win.
But it would behoove the organization to try eliminating a 17.5 game deficit in one winter. Looking at the bigger picture, the Cardinals will review the free agents to be in the next 1-3 years and make a plan. General Manager John Mozeliak has a plan and has no requirement to share every detail with us.
Cardinals Ownership Understands the Situation
The owners see it. They in all likelihood didn’t approach this offseason with the express purpose to build a team that would catch the Cubs. Just look at the two rosters and you quickly make that deduction too. Of course, the Cardinals aren’t going to announce to the public that they are playing for the wild card.
That would be a dumb move. Who wants to attend a game knowing the team has been built for second place? However, astute baseball fans have that knowing feeling when they watch them on TV or attend a game in person.
Let’s understand that the ownership and organization expressed from the very onset of the off-season that they were not going to make any major deals. They are honest. They say they are not sending money, they are not going after big free agents and they don’t.
Cardinals Won’t Build the Farm System Like the Cubs
The Cardinals aren’t going to go about the farm system in the same way the Cubs did. The Cubs had to tank a few years in order to draft quality. The Cardinals aren’t going to tank. They are building through astute drafting parameters and International signings. You won’t see them spending for high end talent.
This team has been one of the best in the bigs for almost two decades. They have a very good track record and the Front Office has a plan. A plan that I trust them to fulfill. They aren’t going to catch the Cubs in one year.
Cardinals Have the Money but Doesn’t Guarantee Winning
So now I am hearing you say we have plenty of money let’s spend it. To some extent they can but that is not a prerequisite for success. Look at the last six years and no team that has spent over $180 million has won the Big One. The Cardinals, under that amount, have won once and appeared twice.
When you hear the words “low hanging fruit” don’t get discouraged. It’s just fancy words for the fact that the players are good, just not the great ones. Lastly, don’t think for minute that owner Bill DeWitt, Jr and his son don’t want to win. Their track record speaks for itself. Sure, it’s a business and it needs to make a profit. They are doing that and will see that the big club has all it needs to be competitive. Just not all in one year!