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The Cardinals are interested in Josh Donaldson


Last winter the St. Louis Cardinals were rumored to be interested in then-free agent Justin Turner. This was part of a two week period in the runup to the Winter Meetings in which they signed Dexter Fowler and then were rumored to be after other big fish such as Mark Trumbo and Edwin Encarnacion.

None of that came to pass and they decided to handle third base by sticking with Jhonny Peralta. Peralta was a bust this year and has been let go. Jon Morosi of MLB Network is hearing that they want to revisit all of that:

There hasn’t been any suggestion I’m aware of that the Blue Jays would want to trade the former AL MVP. Even if they did, it’d cost the Cardinals a great deal for him even if he is having a down year (.238/.350/.457, 8 HR). Donaldson is in the second year of a two-year, arbitration-avoiding deal he signed in February 2016. He’s making $17 million.

Hindsight is 20/20 I suppose, but it strikes me that if Plan B at third base for the Cardinals was “go out and trade for a big name third baseman who makes a lot of money and who would cost a package of prospects,” maybe St. Louis should’ve considered Justin Turner for Plan A a lot more harder than they did.

Indians release Mike Napoli

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The Cleveland Indians have released Mike Napoli.

This is not terribly surprising as he was seen as a depth move to begin with. Injury insurance for Yonder Alonso at first base and Edwin Encarnacion at DH, neither of whom are injured at the moment. Napoli was on a minor league contract and the Indians made it clear that, if he can’t find a major league job elsewhere, he’s welcome to come back and cool his heels in Columbus in the event he’s needed later.

Which may be what happens if he wants to keep playing because, after a season in which he hit .193/.285/.428, and a spring in which he hit .218/.310/.431, there aren’t likely to be a ton of takers.