It's become canon around The Nation.
The T-O-P priority for 2014 is shortstop. The Cardinals need one. The Rockies have one.
We are all keenly aware that the Danny Descalso / Peter Kozma double team that the Cards went with most of 2013 season isn't commiserate with the aspirations of a team poised to win championships.
Yes. With an 'S'.
So we're all eager to see what GM John Mozeliak has up his sleeve for a solution.
Popular sentiment amongst the casual fan has centered around Colorado Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki. Watch this video and picture him in the middle of the Busch Stadium infield. Wouldn't be to shabby, right?
Totally agree. Dude is a stud. Red and white would look GOOD on Tulo. But guess what… It ain't happening. Not a chance in the world.
Now ESPN is fueling the fire. This article was published today. It's an ESPN Insider page, so I can't read the whole thing (sorry for the cheapness). But the part I can see includes the quote "Tulowitzki is the best, most realistic shortstop addition available for the Cardinals".
Huh? Most realistic?
Here's the breakdown of Tulo's contract as it stands right now:
That's a minimum of 130M dollars over the next 7 years. With a 4M dollar buyout in 2021, if needed, or a 15M team option. In other words, that's not a contract that is team favorable.
Yes, the Cardinals do have big money coming off the books in 2014. But if you want to keep some of these elite talents past the age of 25 on the roster now… you're going to have to pay them eventually. Right about the time that 3rd or 4th 20M year kicks in for Tulo.
Now here's where it gets interesting.
In and of itself (sans an injury in 2012), that's a stuffed stat sheet. Even had a nice bounce back year in 2013. Doing all of this without protection!
Let's remember, though, what the Cardinals have built their success on the past 3 years, though… and it isn't paying guys the huge money for what they've done.
They cut bait with Pujols at the exact right time.
And SS? That's a position up the middle. A position that you can't hide on the field. So what makes me think that the same risk that the Cardinals wouldn't afford Pujols with a contract valued on past production would be swallowed by the Cardinals 2 years later for shortstop?
And we haven't even mentioned what they'd be trading to even get the right to pay out that contract.
Again, would love to see Troy Tulowitzki as a Cardinal. Love it. Never been a fan of people that are protective of the Cardinals money… I want to see the STARS! Make it RAIN Johnny MO! But to say that this is a viable option? And to say it on ESPN (Insider), well that's just flat out silly.
He won't be a Cardinal in 2014.
Or probably ever. And I'm fine with that.
More curious is the split on the poll we did for Stalin Castro as an option to trade for. Looks like Cardinal fans are really in love with Shelby Miller or really don't like Starlin Castro. Or vice versa.
Bottom line? Forget Tulo.