Here are the things that are still true:
- Matt Holliday is still an excellent baseball player. Right now he's got an OPS+ of 125; in addition to that he runs well and fields well. Nobody—not even my favorite TTO guy, Jack Cust—is hitting for power in Oakland this year. If you want to get really optimistic about it you can hope that his power has been depressed to an undue degree by playing in that notorious pitcher's park in that notorious league. Even if the trade doesn't make much sense—and it doesn't—the Cardinals have upgraded.
- Brett Wallace is still an excellent baseball hitter. There are questions here—in the end it comes down to Mozeliak's stats and scouts vs. Beane's stats and scouts, who must weigh Wallace's defensive and power potential in any deal. Certainly he's worth more to an AL club.
- Which makes it weird that the Cardinals still had to throw in Peterson, one of their vaguely fringy corner bats, and Mortensen, the Golden Sinker.
To resurrect a dead phrase, the Cardinals are seriously going for broke. Make no mistake: they're better now than they would have been with Wallace on the team this year. But this is two months, and if it isn't two months it's millions and millions of dollars. Get to the playoffs, guys. Please.