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Headlines that could have been but weren't. A Matt Holliday Saga. UPDATED: Now with added logic!


Denver Post, November 12th 2008; Dan O'Dowd: "Rockies pretty much set for 2009 season".

O'Dowd: "I can't see us making any major moves this offseason, i know its early but i think we have a strong enough team to contend, especially with Matt Holliday looking to have another stellar year"

In an unrelated incident, scientists today reported an unexplained shift in the space-time continum

St. Louis P-D, July 24 2009; Cards quietly confident at halfway point

Tony La Russa today expressed his confidence that the Cardinals had what it took to win the NL Central without the need for any major offensive boost. "i think that with Chris [Duncan] and Rick [Ankiel] we give ourselves the best oppurtunity to win the division".

STL P-D, September 26 2009; Holliday Crushes Cards Clinching Hopes 

Despite heroics from Jason LaRue and a Valiant 130+ pitch effort from Wainwright, the Cardinals are yet to clinch the division after Holliday's 9th inning walk-off double. Holliday, who has spent his entire career in Colorado, was unavilable for comment, but Manager Jim Tracy said, somewhat cryptically, that "this victory was important if only for the sense of twisted irony".

[NEW] Denver Post, September 26 2009; Holliday, Rox walk-off against Cards, clinch West

Despite early season struggles, the Rockies climbed to the top of the NL West and today eliminated the rival Dodgers with victory against the St. Louis Cardinals. Holliday, the game's hero after hitting a one-out walkoff 2-run double said "I think we have a great chance to compete in the playoffs". 

STL P-D, September 28th 2009, TLR unhappy with sweep

After losing four straight games to the Rockies in Colorado, Cardinals Manager La Russa branded the team an "embarassment" for failing to clinch the division and falling to only one game ahead of the Chicago Cubs. La Russa said he was concered that the team were losing concentration at the wrong time and reserved his only kind words for Rockies outfielder Holliday; whom he described as "a great hitter" (Holliday hit .500 against the Cards with 4HRs and 12RBI). 

STL P-D, September 29th 2009, Wallace Lifts Cards to Central Title

What was branded as an overly long wait the Cards finally clinch the NL Central after 2HRs from Brett Wallace. The Cardinals top prospect, who had struggled early in September after his late call-up, lifted the Cards to victory against the Reds, hitting in the 5th spot in the order, Wallace hit a 2-run shot in the 3rd and added a solo blast later in the 7th. Wallace described it as "fitting to finally contribute".

STL P-D, September 30th 2009, Cards calamity as OFs collide.

Outfielders Duncan and Ankiel collided today chasing down a fly ball in left-center field, both will be unable to play in the postseason. 

STL P-D, October 8th 2009, Cards drop second game of NLDS.

After injuries limited the Cards to only two of their four usual outfielders, emergency leftfielder Brett Wallace was unable to make a routine looking play for the final out of the game. Wallace: "in some ways it just seemed inevitable...". Despite his error, Cards fans and managment are hopeful of a bounceback when the birds return to St. Louis.

STL P-D, October 10th 2009, TLR: We will be better in 2010

[NEW] Denver Post, October 12th 2009, Rox steal NLDS from Phils

The Rockies completed a shock victory over the 2008 WS champs Phils. In the tie-breaking 5th game, the Phillie's struggling closer Brad Lidge served up a solo shot to first baseman Todd Helton to take the game to extra innings, when Centre Fielder Dexter Fowler scored the winning run after stealing home base in the 15th inning. Jim Tracy said later "Wow, that guy just loves to use huge amounts of artistic license doesn't he."

[NEW] ESPN.com 4th November 2009, Rockies Rock to WS title

In what has been described as a victory for poetry rather than baseballing sense, the Rockies won the World Series against the New York Yankees. With Matt Holliday being declared WS MVP.

STL P-D, January 31st 2010, Holliday reaches $140mil, 7year agreement with Cards

After an embittered battle with the Rockies for the signiature of All-star OF Matt Holliday, the Cards came out on top with a deal that will pay him $20mil a year. TLR had recently revealed that the Cards had 'internally considered' a midseason play for the Former-Rockies player, but considered top prospect Wallace too valuable to trade. Mozeliak later admitted that it would be 'a battle, but a battle we are confident we can win' to sign Superstar Albert Pujols considering the Cards new payroll limitations

[NEW] STL P-D, March 23rd 2010, Freese released after 3rd DWI

In what was described as a convinient way of wrapping up all remaining loose ends, Cardinal's third basemen David Freese was today released from his contract by the Cardinals front office for Off-the-field violations. Brett Wallace is expected to play third base for the Cards in 2010.

 

So, this is basically my incredibly long, drawn out way of asking the question: had the Cards not acquired Holliday midseason, would they have seriously considered going after him as a Free Agent? How different would the Cards be today if we still had Wallace? Is this a better or worse case scenario?

 

A couple of points, yes this is a bit (well more than a bit) silly, but still within the realms of possibility, Holliday has a season for the ages in Colorado and all of a sudden the Rockies don't seem quite as keen to let him go and increased interest from the usual suspects (no-one knows he'll be a bit of a flop in the AL) and suddenly his price skyrockets by $20mil. Just an interesting thought experiment really.

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