Matt Holliday had hoped that the All-Star break would give his hamstring injury enough time to heal, but he remained out of the lineup yesterday and now the Cardinals have placed him on the disabled list.
St. Louis figures to keep using Allen Craig in left field, with Matt Adams taking over for him at first base. Adams has been fantastic in a part-time role all season, hitting .316 with seven homers and a .916 OPS in 148 plate appearances. Call-up (and minor league journeyman) Brock Peterson could also see some action after hitting a Pacific Coast League-leading 22 homers.
Holliday hasn’t been quite his usual self at the plate, hitting just .268 after topping a .290 batting average in each of his first nine seasons, but he did have 13 homers, 15 doubles, and an .800 OPS in 83 games.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.