Two days ago, the Kansas City Royals acquired free-agent Brandon Moss. What does that mean for the Cardinals?
Last season, Brandon Moss was a part of a two man platoon at first-base with Matt Adams. Any time a right-handed pitcher started for the other team, Moss usually did too—25 of his 28 home-runs in 2016 came against right-handed pitching.
Moss’ and Adams’ futures as Cardinals came under large amounts of scrutiny earlier in the offseason when John Mozelaik told reporters that for the upcoming season Matt Carpenter would acquire the starting role at first. No one was quite sure who would stay and who would go: Moss would become a free-agent and Adams was eligible for arbitration.
On January 12th, the Cardinals and Adams avoided arbitration with a one-year $2.8 million contract. At this point, the Cardinal’s lack in interest in resigning Moss became apparent. No team needs two back-up first-basemen. Sure, Moss can also play the outfield, but the Cardinal’s have a slew of minor-league talent and depth in that regard. Namely Tommy Pham, Harrison Bader, and Magneuris Sierra.
Before I dig any deeper, let me say this: I love Brandon Moss. I think he brought so much to the team last season, and he seems like an amazing stand-up dude, so I’m sad to see him go.
But, the Cardinals signing Moss would’ve been silly. Sure the team might have lost a little pop off their bench. Especially in situations against right-handed pitching. Moss’ 28 home runs last season ranked second highest on the team last year.
However, fortunately for the team, pinch hitting seems to be the last of their worries. Last season the team’s pinch hitting posted historic numbers. Their 15 homers off the bench set an all-time MLB record.
Other than hit home-runs, Moss didn’t really have any other stand-out qualities. He only held a .225 batting average, and he struck out an absurd amount of times (141).
Additionally, Matt Adams is simply a much better backup.
Sure, Brandon Moss had Matt Adams beat in pop. In only ten less games, Adams held twelve less homers than Moss. But on the other hand Adams held a .249 batting average. While still not great, it is significantly higher than Moss’ .225.
Also say what you will about Adams, but at the age of 28, he is also five years younger than Moss. Because of this one could argue that he is less prone to injury and has a greater potential to have a “break-out” year. These arguments even more plausible when you factor into account that Adams has lost 25 pounds this offseason.
After provoking the thought of “how could a guy like that be a professional athlete” last season, Adams’ weight loss won’t only make him look more like an athlete, but it will actually make him more of an athlete. On the bases, on defense, and in the batter’s box.
So what do you think? Do you think Moss’ presence on the team will be missed in the clubhouse or the diamond? Let us know! Tweet us at @cardsblog or find us on Facebook!
Photo Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports