Our chat this week features plenty of questions about the Cardinals rotation, as well as a detour to the French Open tennis tournament. Here are some of the highlights.
Q: Before the season started, I recall you promoting the question “Where will the innings come from?”. It’s now (only) June, and I just watched John Gant hit for himself in a game in which he was down 7-0 in the third inning the day before an off day. … Where on earth do the Cardinals find innings that now apart from desperate trades and waiver claims?
A: I’ve been trying to tell folks what was at risk for the Cardinals. They were risking a serious innings deficit. And here it is. Well, now it’s more of an innings crisis. And it’s already compromised the bullpen multiple times. When the bullpen is in its role, allowed to perform as designed, then it can be quite good. Daniel Ponce de Leon and Ryan Helsley offer options for “chase” relievers, too. Those are middle relievers who can hold a deficit and allow an offense to chase. The bullpen has the makings of the best in the division. For sure. It just has had to stretch and reach and search to cover the leftover innings from the starters, and the results have shown that.
You’re right. That Cardinals are scrambling. They’re looking through the moves you describe exactly: waiver claims and trades.