'Tis the season to be jolly. Or in the St. Louis Cardinals' case, needy.
With many teams already making major moves in the offseason, General Manager John Mozeliak has merely meddled in the realms of middle of the road free agents, signing starting pitcher Brad Penny.
Now, that does fill a hole that the Cardinals had last season, but will it be enough?
Here are a few things that Mozeliak needs to add to his Christmas list in order to win next season.
1. Since it's the holiday season, why not start out by talking about Matt Holliday? It's essential that the Cardinals resign him, as well as utility man Mark DeRosa. They've already put an offer on the table for Holliday that adds up to $16 million for eight years.
Albert Pujols has openly stated that he wants to win championships and wants a good team around him to help him with that, or he'll go elsewhere.
That was the reason Mozeliak acquired Holliday and DeRosa last season. So acquiring them for half a season and letting them go would make Cardinals fans, and Pujols, wonder what's really going on in the front office.
2. The Cardinals desperately need a left-handed starter. They currently have just five lefties on the roster, all of which are relievers.
Several solid lefties remain on the free agent market and Mozeliak should have his eye on them. Jerrod Washburn, Doug Davis, and Eric Milton are all available and would fit well in the middle of the Cardinals' rotation.
The Cardinals were rumored to have been interested in Davis for a brief time in 2009 but never pursued him. Washburn posted an 8-6 record with a 2.64 ERA while in Seattle last season but saw his ERA balloon to 7.33 once he arrived in Detroit, posting just one win with three losses.
3. Stolen bases were not something that was often seen last season in St. Louis. Albert Pujols led the team with 16 stolen bases, followed by Brendan Ryan with 14. The Cardinals ranked 23rd in the Majors in stolen bases, and it doesn't seem like that number will improve much this year.
Colby Rasmus, who stole 15 bases in 90 games at Triple-A Memphis in 2008, could provide a little bit of speed, but didn't show any of it last season, stealing just three bases.
It's likely that nothing will happen until the Matt Holliday saga ends, simply because Mozeliak's top priority is to sign Holliday to a long term deal. It's also likely that this will dictate any future signings later this offseason. But let's not forget that Holliday is a Scott Boras client, so this could take a while.
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