The Cardinals Aren’t Projected to Win the NL Central?by Ben Fadden February 9, 2021 1 comment
The annual PECOTA projections were released on Tuesday and to say that the St. Louis Cardinals aren’t receiving the respect they deserve would be an understatement.
If you saw the 2021 PECOTA projections and thought that they were done before the offseason started, you weren’t alone. Here is how they projected the NL Central to finish:
- Milwaukee (89 wins)
- Chicago (85 wins)
- St. Louis (81 wins)
- Cincinnati (80 wins)
- Pittsburgh (61 wins)
Are you kidding me? Where should I start?
The St. Louis Cardinals are behind the Brewers and the Cubs? Milwaukee is going to be a decent team and could fight for the second Wild Card spot with the runner-ups in the NL East, but it’s hard to believe in their rotation past Brandon Woodruff and their bullpen past Josh Hader.
The Cubs aren’t even trying to win. They traded away their best pitcher in Yu Darvish, who had a case to win the NL Cy Young last year. They also let Kyle Schwarber and Jon Lester go to Washington just because they didn’t want to pay them for one year. Oh, and should I mention that they are shopping Kris Bryant?
St. Louis is the only team that clearly wants to win
A few weeks ago, the NL Central was up for grabs. It felt like every team in the division wasn’t trying to go all-in this year. But then the Cardinals went out and brought back Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina for one more year.
Nolan Arenado is a future Hall of Famer and those types of players aren’t available very often, so the Cardinals took advantage of Colorado wanting to deal him, as they got him along with over $50 million to help pay for his contract–and they gave up a bag of peanuts for him.
So the Cardinals traded for the best defensive third baseman we’ve ever seen since Brooks Robinson to pair with All-Star first baseman, Paul Goldschmidt, while the Cubs traded away their ace, but Chicago deserves to be ahead of St. Louis right?
The projections are usually pretty spot on, but this year it seems like they will be laughable.
Follow Ben Fadden on Twitter @benfaddensports
Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images