The Pressure is on the Rotation

The St. Louis Cardinals have had several years of quality pitching production coming from their rotation.


2010 3.57/3.85

2011 3.74/3.75

2012 3.71/3.62

2013 3.42/3.39

2014 3.50/3.65

2015 2.94/3.47

2016 4.08/3.88

2017 4.01/4.09

I'll only be looking at the previous three years for individual pitchers on the starting staff.

2015 ERA/FIP:

-John Lackey 2.77/3.57

Lance Lynn 3.03/3.44

Carlos Martinez 3.01/3.21

Michael Wacha 3.38/3.87

Jaime Garcia 2.43/3.00

2016 ERA/FIP:

Adam Wainwright 4.62/3.93

Carlos Martinez 3.04/3.61

Michael Wacha 5.09/3.91

Mike Leake 4.69/3.83

-Jaime Garcia 4.67/4.49

2017 ERA/FIP:

Carlos Martinez 3.64/3.91

Michael Wacha 4.13/3.63

Adam Wainwright 5.11/4.29

-Mike Leake 4.21/4.24

-Lance Lynn 3.43/4.82


Carlos Martinez

Michael Wacha

Luke Weaver

*Adam Wainwright

*Miles Mikolas

^Flaherty and/or Reyes

One year ago, who would have guessed Mike Leake wouldn't be in our rotation? I'm using this FanPost to point out that starting pitching comes and goes; however, the Cardinals have maintained solid-steady production from their starting pitchers. While 2015 was ridiculously good year for pitching, 2016/2017 were leaning more toward average production. My thoughts: the Cardinals need to return to that 3.50-3.70 range to make the playoffs this year -- they can do it!

I have no basis to make this claim: I expect the 2018 starting pitchers to be better than average, likely top 10. The Cardinals had a string of many years with a good rotation. In my opinion, Alex Reyes injury is the reason the starting pitching did not do as well as in recent years. Well, good news: Alex Reyes will be returning!Add in a rising Luke Weaver and a young-but-talented Jack Flaherty. This year will be exciting as we--Cardinals nation--will learn what we have to look forward to over the next several years. Some will pan out -- others won't.

Someone (Reyes expected) needs to step in for Wainwright next year. Having Reyes' talent to lead the rotation will help the entire rotation take a step forward (I'm imagining early Wainwright). Looking ahead, there are many exciting young arms to keep an eye on. Some kids will be moved to the bullpen like Rosenthal was in the past. The Cardinals don't tend to spend market value (Cecil was unexpected) for relievers, and the Cardinals may not need to spend for relievers after some of these kids get their chance. There may be questions with the rotation, but the talent/depth are real.

I don't believe the Cardinals should spend anything for the rest of this offseason. This is a good year to supplement injured players with the crop of talent from the minors. I believe the roster is set with enough competitiveness to at least pursue the wild card race. For this reason I would like to see what we have to look forward to with our prospects as injuries are bound to happen. The Cardinals have someone every year that steps into a role to produce in unforeseen circumstances. I'm not going to advocate spending big on anyone in the free agent/trade markets this year because I believe no single acquisition guarantees the division to belong to the Cardinals.

To cap this long nothingness, I'm really looking forward to watching the Cardinals in 2018. This year will reveal how well the organization can transition from the Yadi/Wainwright era. Also, the Cardinals will be in an interesting position for the superclass of free agency next year. I don't know about you, but I'm filled with expectations for many young players to step up to the plate.