lboros already tackled this subject at VEB, but here is my case for why the Cardinals should be sellers-
After a rough road trip, John Mozeliak dismissed the notion of being sellers at the deadline. Judging from the sound of things, the team will be moderate buyers but won’t do anything they feel would hurt the long-term health of the club. That’s good, but should the Cards be sellers?
In just seven days the Cardinals have seen their postseason odds drop dramatically, 26% to be exact. They now have just a 13% chance of making the playoffs. Their Pythagorean W-L record is 55-52 and their adjusted record (record adjusted by equivalent runs/equivalent runs allowed;strength of schedule also factored) is actually 52-54. PECOTA has the Cards pegged to finish the season 85-77, 7 games behind the Brewers and 9 games behind the Cubs.
Or, in less stat speak: The Cardinals are gonna have a heck of a time catching the Brewers and the Cubs. Both teams were quite talented to begin with, and they both greatly enhanced their chances with adding CC and Harden. Now both clubs are on pace to win 90+ games. While their scrappiness and fight has been a joy to watch, this team strikes me as an overachieving bunch that is likely to regress to the mean and showed signs of that this past week.
Obviously, the return of Carpenter and Wainwright could be meaningful, but it’s hard to bet your season on one player just coming back from Tommy John surgery. And given the team is also toying with the notion of putting Wainwright back into the bullpen, having him back won’t be as big. I realize things have gotten rotten out there, but putting AW in the ‘pen in hopes of stabilizing the situation would counterproductive, especially considering the man can give you innings.
I’m not trying to be a pessimist, but I just think now could be a good time to cash in some of the chips to bolster the farm system: Lohse’s value is at an all-time high. Ryan Ludwick would fetch the team a pretty nice return, although Lud will only have three years of MLB service under his belt, so there’s an argument for keeping him if you believe his breakout is real. Looper will be a free agent this fall. Pineiro’s value isn’t going to get a lot higher. And Cesar Izturis probably wouldn’t fetch much, but if they can get anything in return for him, they should take it.