St. Louis makes a late-night move, as the Cardinals sign Steven Matz. Check out the details of the signing here.
Cardinals Sign Steven Matz
News broke late last night that Steven Matz, the left-handed pitching free agent from the Blue Jays, had signed with the Cardinals. Jeff Passan had the news first last night, that pending a physical, Matz will have a four-year, $44 million contract. He could potentially be paid up to $48 million with bonuses and incentives.
Matz, 30-years old, is back in the National League after spending last season with the Toronto Blue Jays. Previously, he had spent six years with the New York Mets. Last season Matz had a career year going 14-7 with a 3.82 ERA in 29 starts. Matz struck out 144 and walked 43 over 150 ⅔ innings.
Matz carries a career ERA of 4.24 and in each of the last three full seasons, he has pitched 150 plus innings. Matz is not much of an innings eater but is a prominent starter, something the Cardinals were looking for to start the offseason.
Cardinals Strike Early
The front office mentioned how they wanted to make a splash in the starting pitching section of free agency and they have done just that. They also make a move before the expected lockout. The lockout is expected to start in early December.
Matz has contract offers from many different teams, including his former team, the New York Mets. Mets owner Steve Cohen voiced his frustrations on Twitter about Matz not coming back to New York. Cohen has had issues in the past with voicing his frustrations on Twitter and that can happen when a fan of the team buys the team.
What Does This Mean Going Forward?
I hope that the Cardinals are not done spending money. They wanted to make a splash in the starting pitching pool, and they still have money to do so. I would hope that this does not take them out of the Max Scherzer race, but if it does then at least make an attempt to sign Marcus Stroman.
Adding Scherzer to this lineup would put this team to the next level. They now have a solid left-handed pitcher in Matz, then to come back with another big starting pitcher would help this team. Scherzer would be the number three pitcher in the rotation or even possibly the number two. The staff with Jack Flaherty and Adam Wainwright already would be dangerous.
If they are unable to get Max Scherzer, to sign Marcus Stroman would be a huge addition as well. Stroman is an innings eater with a great ground ball rate, that he would love with this defense. Stroman could hold up the back end of the rotation with Dakota Hudson and a Stroman addition could still put this team at the next level.
The rest of the free-agent signings may take a bit to come, but do not count the Cardinals out on a possible shortstop addition as well. With the lockout coming soon, it may be some time before the Cardinals make another move.