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St Louis Post-Dispatch : Best Shortstop Fit for the Cardinals is JJ Hardy


jamesenoch

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The O's in order to get full value for Hardy would no doubt either sign Hardy to an extension before the trade or give the Cards a window to sign Hardy before the trade is complete.

I could see Miller and Freese for Hardy and a minor leaguer like a Bridwell.

The Cards have Carpenter to take over 3B and Wong a 2nd base. Freese had a down year last year but has hit well in the past. He is not the defensive player that the O's would like but the O's ended up in the middle of the pack with one of the best defensive team in history. They need to improve the pitching and hitting.

Whether Flaherty or Freese is the best 3rd would be something the O's would have to figure out. Freese is a good enough hitter to DH if he gets beat out at 3rd.

Adding Miller and Freese would be cheaper than keeping Hardy for the next 4 years. And heaven knows the O's are always considering the money.

Someone drank the entire Kool-Aid man.

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Right now the only thing we know is the Cardinals turned down Hardy for Miller, which any objective observer agrees they should have. If the Orioles think Hardy is worth Miller, they are clearly the delusional ones.

I can see the O's holding out for Miller and Freese for Hardy and a prospect. The O's would be fine with keeping Hardy and extending him. So if the Cards determine that Hardy is their best choice then that may be what it takes to get a deal done.

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Someone drank the entire Kool-Aid man.

No, actually I think Wildcard has it right. It is the Cardinals need for a shortstop driving this whole discussion. The best realistic alternative to Hardy for them was Texas, and that window just closed. Keeping Hardy is an excellent alternative for the Orioles. There is no reason for the Orioles to trade Hardy for less. If the other pitching prospects they have are so good, fine, one of them can replace Miller in their rotation. If St. Louis doesn't want to pay what it takes, they can re-sign Furcal and call it a day. I think DD knows what he has in Hardy, and will not trade him for lesser players. Heck, Drew turned down $14 million, for crying out loud. And he is no Hardy. If that doesn't underscore the value of top shortstops in today's market for you, I don't know what to tell you.

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No, actually I think Wildcard has it right. It is the Cardinals need for a shortstop driving this whole discussion. The best realistic alternative to Hardy for them was Texas, and that window just closed. Keeping Hardy is an excellent alternative for the Orioles. There is no reason for the Orioles to trade Hardy for less. If the other pitching prospects they have are so good, fine, one of them can replace Miller in their rotation. If St. Louis doesn't want to pay what it takes, they can re-sign Furcal and call it a day. I think DD knows what he has in Hardy, and will not trade him for lesser players. Heck, Drew turned down $14 million, for crying out loud. And he is no Hardy. If that doesn't underscore the value of top shortstops in today's market for you, I don't know what to tell you.

So you think Hardy for Miller is a fair deal for the Cardinals?

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So you think Hardy for Miller is a fair deal for the Cardinals?

Trades are rarely, if ever, a straight-line value proposition. Need is a major consideration in any trade. So is the supply and demand situation. In this case, the Cardinals have an acknowledged need for a SS. The Orioles are not actively seeking to rid themselves of Hardy. The Orioles are in a position where, when offered a trade for Hardy, they can say that he is only available in exchange for a clear premium in value. This happens often. The Cardinals, in turn, must decide if filling their pressing need at shortstop with Hardy is worth paying the premium in value necessary to complete the deal. The Orioles have zero reason in this situation to accept equal value. So, yes, I think it is a fair deal, given that the true alternative in this case is no deal. Now, if St. Louis isn't willing to pay that premium, and feel that they would be better served filling their shortstop hole thru the obviously inflated free agent market we are seeing this off-season, then that is the way they should go.

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I agree that that Shelby Miller is probably too high of a price for the Cardinals to pay for one year of Hardy. At the same time, I wonder which pitchers the author of the Dispatch article would suggest would be a fair return for Hardy. I am not convinced that Lance Lynn and his 91 ERA+ from 2013 is a fair deal. Carlos Martinez would be a good start. Carlos Martinez and David Freese for Hardy seems like a fair deal that I'd consider. Cardinals get their starting shortstop and are rid of Freese, which means they are "only" adding $6.5 m in the deal. O's save roughly $6.5 m that can be used elsewhere, get a one year 3B stopgap (with the potential for good OBP), and a good young starter that the Cardinals might not even have room in their rotation for.

Like others have said, it is the Cardinals that need the shortstop. If Hardy really is the best fit for them, I am not sure why it would be the Orioles who would have to acquiesce to whatever the Cardinals offer. I am glad we started with Miller. I hope we come down a bit if the Cardinals have sincere interest in Hardy. I hope we don't come down to Lynn or whoever just for the sake of trading Hardy.

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It seems that some people on the Oriole side are hoping that the Cardinals are so desperate for Hardy and because of their depth of young pitching talent, that they will overpay in the from of Miller. I don't think so.

I believe that you are missing the point. The Orioles aren't "hoping" for anything. I think that they are instead stating that they are just fine with keeping Hardy, but if offered a deal that has a clear premium in value, like Miller, then they are willing to tango.

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