The Cardinals spend millions of dollars a year sending scouts to scour the corners of the earth looking for the next big thing. However, if the team can make a few small changes to the MLBPA collective bargaining agreement, they could build this team into a World Series contender for a fractional cost.

If you had any sort of childhood, you remember the glories of shoving the backyard baseball 2003 disc into the family computer and being met with the nasally, familiar tone of Abner Doubleplay.

You might have had the 2005 A-Rod version, which included all-time greats like Carlos Delgado, Dontrelle Willis, and Shawn Green. Under the hot afternoon sun at Sandy Flats or the Junkyard, you could harness the power of the zig-zag power-up like a wily veteran.

Or perhaps you were a real fan, had the 2003 Mike Piazza edition, and the good fortune to choose between Richie Sexson, Brad Radke, Phil Nevin, and Jeff Conine when building your squad.

However if you drafted a single real player, you’re eye for true talent was severely lacking, and that’s where I believe the Cardinals have gone wrong.  The local kids have unbelievable potential and a scrappiness you just don’t see in the pros anymore.

 Here are three changes I believe Mozeliak should make before the deadline that could pay huge dividends in the coming season and beyond.

  1. Find a Real Slugger
    1. The Redbirds are in desperate of need of a player who hits absolute ding-dongs.  A bonafide home run hitter who’s gonna strike out on three pitches or hit a 500 ft. bomb with no in between.  Kiesha Phillips is that player. She towers over every kid on the field and there have obviously been whispers of PEDs, but at this point they are empty allegations and the potential reward far outweighs the risk. If she connects, the ball is going into the swamp.  Its like having the rubber bat power-up overtime she steps up to the plate.  She’s also got a decent set of wheels, so if teams try a heavy shift, she is capable of laying one down the line and making them pay.
  2. Shore Up the rotation with the “Next Big Thing”
    1. I’ve never seen anyone paint the corners quite like Angela Delvechio.  Her control of the zone is unbelievable and once she gets inside the head of the hitter, its game over.  She plays a chess match, ripping 95 mph heaters low and away until you’re sure its coming, when she’ll hit you with her 42 mph curve. The off-speed pitch has been known to reverse direction, slow down, speed up, and stop on a single throw. Its incredibly tough to get a barrel on.  I could see her as an Andrew Miller type for the Cardinals, eating up middle innings and closing the door when necessary.  At just 7 years old, she’s got tremendous upside and should be locked into a long term deal ASAP.
  3. Ditch Fowler for the redhead
    1. In the leadoff spot we need someone who will get on base no matter the cost, except if the cost is $82.5 million, like the Cardinals are giving to Fowler. I’ve got a guy that’ll play for a pack of skittles and a hot-dog. Pete Wheeler has the speed to beat out a routine grounder and is willing to lean way over the plate to take one off the elbow. He’s a dirt dog through and through.  Despite an incredibly large head, shaped like a peanut, weighing him down, he’s a hawk in center field.  His blistering pace foils many a hitter expecting an extra base hit.  While his plate discipline is a little lacking at the moment, he’s got solid pop and has been proven clutch at least once every Saturday morning for the last 15 years.