Q & A with tom s.

ST. LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 26: Kyle McClellan #46 of the St. Louis Cardinals throws to a Pittsburgh Pirates batter at Busch Stadium on August 26, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)

it's time for question-and-answer in which i ask myself questions, and then answer them! it's not socially unacceptable to do this on the internet, but it may get you in trouble if you do it by the side of the road.

Q: now that he's putting allen craig in center field just to get him at-bats, does tony la russa regret putting joe thurston at third base for 463 innings and 307 PAs in 2009, back when allen craig was supposedly an actual third baseman?

A: no. tony la russa is incapable of such introspection or of questioning his own decision making process. this kind of confidence is what makes him a hall-of-fame manager and also someone who is a pain in the ass to go on a long driving vacation with. this inability to identify one's own faults is a prerequisite for admission to law school.

Q: will adron chambers be called up this september?

A: of course not. it has obviously worked out just fine giving corey patterson a bunch of at-bats. why stop now?

Q: will eduardo sanchez rejoin the club healthy in spring training? 

A: sanchez recently informed the media that he threw without pain, which was merely a rough translation of his original comment in spanish, which was "tire, y mi brazo no se callo [i pitched, and my arm did not fall off]." so, yes.

Q: what is going to happen in 2013 when yadier molina's contract is up and all the club's money is tied up in paying albert pujols and matt holliday?

A: oh, hey, look, there's a little bird. hello, birdie. isn't it pretty?

Q: no, seriously, what's going to happen at catcher after yadi's option year?

A: i try not to think too hard about it.

Q: why does jake westbrook stink this year?

A: well, he's 34 years old with an injury history. his strike out rate and walk rate are among his worst numbers ever over a full season. also, punishment from the gods of baseball for inadequate reverence.

Q: what is john mozeliak going to do this november with no 30+ upcoming free agent #4-type pitcher to offer a multi-year extension to? 

A: sign kyle lohse to a further extension. kidding. kidding. i hope. 

Q: with the following cardinals up for type A/type B status: pujols, berkman, carpenter, dotel, jackson, theriot (on the verge of type B status), schumaker, rhodes, who do you offer arbitration to?

A: to whom do you offer arbitration.

Q: what?

A: it's "to whom do you offer arbitration." "who do you offer arbitration to" is improper.

Q: screw you. answer the question.

A: fine, jerk. berkman, carpenter, and pujols are fairly easy "yeses," should it come to that. jackson is a fairly strong yes; even if we don't have room for him, he'd be very tradeable. so, the downside of his accepting arb is fairly low (of course, he'll have to stop pitching like crap to keep his type B status). dotel is a close case, since he'd probably make another $3m next year in arbitration; still, he's not such a bad reliever that i would think that's out of the question. the upside of getting a supplementary pick for free, if he declines would be excellent. the downside of him accepting would leave us with an okay, if slightly too expensive reliever, who has some trade value. i would not offer to schumaker (assuming he doesn't fall off the B status list), theriot (assuming he makes the jump to B status), or rhodes unless i had an ironclad agreement that he wouldn't accept. 

Q: is re-signing rafael furcal worth the money?

A: well, probably he's worth something like $4m-$6m next year. he'd have the highest ceiling of all the free agent shortstops. i suspect you might get comparable value from re-signing nick punto or clint barmes, making up on defensive value what you might be losing on the offensive end from furcal; you might be able to sign both for the money you'd spend on furcal.

Q: can you promise me mo is not going to re-sign ryan theriot?

A: . . .

Q: please?

A: . . . .

Q: promise me he'll non-tender skip schumaker?

A: . . . .

Q: dang. did texas really agree to pay arthur rhodes almost $4m, for throwing a ball badly with his left hand?

A: it would appear so.

Q: were there drugs involved in that signing? naked pictures of the GM? hostage-taking?

 A: not to my knowledge.

Q: does it make you sad that we are closer to finishing in fourth place than first?

A: why did you have to say that?

Q: is it weird that allen craig has a higher wOBA than albert pujols?

A: totally weird.

Q: who's the best prospect currently generating no buzz?

A: 2010 second round pick jordan swagerty was relegated to the bullpen to keep his innings count low after dominating as a starter in both low-A and high-A.outside of the big three (miller, jenkins, martinez), swagerty may have one of the highest ceilings of the cardinals pitching prospects. he'll be a starter in springfield next year and may move fast. it's easy to get lost in the cardinals system if you're not making noise right now. alternate choice: deryk hooker had an off-year due to injury, but is currently back (maybe in a big way).

Q: will the club give matt carpenter more than 19 PA's in september?

A: i sure hope so. while i like dan descalso, he looks like a just-over-replacement-value guy. it's a little perplexing that descalso got 500+ innings at third while carpenter lingered at memphis. matt has a projected .342 wOBA for the rest of the season. he ought to get more time on the field.

Q: kyle lohse currently leads the team with 11 wins; do you care about the low number of pitcher wins?

A: not at all.

Q: did you ever think skip schumaker would give up a home run to aaron miles?

A: no, never. that was maybe the only redeeming thing about the whole last month of baseball. well, that and allen craig.

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