Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch offers a look back at the stunning 2014 trade that the Cardinals pulled off with the Red Sox. While the deadline swap that brought in John Lackey devastated the St. Louis clubhouse at the time — Allen Craig and Joe Kelly went to Boston — it looks quite good for the team in retrospect. Goold explores it from all angles, including those of the players involved, while noting one of the intriguing remaining elements of the deal: Cards outfield prospect Dylan Carlson, who was taken with the comp pick the team added when Lackey turned down a qualifying offer after the 2015 season.
- The Cardinals aren’t exactly hiding their interest in Cuban prospect Luis Robert, though it’s also still not fully clear just how hard the club will push to sign him. As Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes, GM John Mozeliak acknowledges that he had a face-to-face meeting with Robert, but also wasn’t willing to telegraph the team’s direction. “It’s hard for me to characterize exactly how I would position ourselves,” he said, “but I definitely felt like our scouts in our international department have done a good job.” It’s still hard to handicap the running for Robert, who is drawing interest from quite a few teams around the league.
- Cardinals righty Michael Wacha says it wasn’t his idea to skip a start, as Goold and Hummel write. Rather, it was a team decision to give the resurgent hurler a break, with the organization hoping to keep him fresh over the long haul. Wacha has shown improved velocity and results after struggling through an injury-marred 2016 season. “[A]nything you can bank now is smart,” Mozeliak explained, suggesting that there may not be another opportunity for an extended rest until the All-Star break.