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Friday, March 24, 2023

All-Star pitcher Miles Mikolas, Cardinals agree on multi-year extension: Sources

A day after a teammate predicted that Miles Mikolas would finish top five in the voting for the National League Cy Young Award with the Cardinals this coming season, the All-Star right-hander finalized an agreement that will assure his next few seasons will also be with the Cardinals.

Mikolas, a two-time All-Star and Jupiter native, as has agreed to a two-year contract extension with the Cardinals, sources told the Post-Dispatch.

An official announcement is expected Friday afternoon.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 24, 2023 at 12:48 PM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cardinals, miles mikolas

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   1. The Duke Posted: March 24, 2023 at 01:03 PM (#6121267)
Compared to some of the offseason deals this is good. Any time you can limit term, you win. I'd say this was Mikolas giving the cards a team-friendly deal. Maybe a handshake on another extension if things go well. He loves St. Louis.
   2. DL from MN Posted: March 24, 2023 at 01:34 PM (#6121272)
Is St. Louis the best run org in baseball?
   3. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 24, 2023 at 01:44 PM (#6121275)

Is St. Louis the best run org in baseball?

No, the Pirates made more operating income last year! Cards care too much about winning!
   4. SoSH U at work Posted: March 24, 2023 at 02:23 PM (#6121280)

Is St. Louis the best run org in baseball?

I think so. Some other org. might jump up and have a great stretch, and the Yankees and Dodgers might have better results, but I think the Cards are the sport's model franchise.
   5. My name is Votto, and I love to get Moppo Posted: March 24, 2023 at 02:37 PM (#6121282)
The Braves have a case, but their rebuild was a swoon compared to St. Louis, which has one losing season since 2000. And the Dodgers have more money than God, but they still churn out plenty of their own players and make smart trades.
   6. Howie Menckel Posted: March 24, 2023 at 02:52 PM (#6121283)
Mikolas barely pitched in 2020 and 2021 and pulled a smoke-and-mirrors act in 2022 - and he turns 35 in August.

he must have laughed as he signed this contract.

"team-friendly deal?"

let's revive this thread in October !
   7. Walt Davis Posted: March 24, 2023 at 03:01 PM (#6121284)
I assume this covers 2024-25 since his current deal covers 23. Seems fine. As Howie notes, these are his age 35-36 seasons and he's a low-K pitcher by today's standards and those guys tend to go from solid to terrible quickly. (I won't stand by the "smoke and mirrors" comment though ... or rather, his 2022 peripherals are the same as his 2018-19 peripherals so he's always been smoke and mirrors. Low-K works fine in combo with low walks and good defense behind you.)
   8. cardsfanboy Posted: March 24, 2023 at 05:08 PM (#6121300)
What is the war value of this contract? It looks like it's about 5 war total using a base of 8mil per war, 2.5 war per year, and I think that is a low war value number (and I have to mention as always I think war underrates starting pitchers in today's game, especially innings eaters) If he stays healthy for the 300 innings, it really doesn't matter how well he pitches it's a valuable contract, but the upside is pretty good to be honest. I don't think any person involved in this deal, from owners, to Mikolas to the fans is going to be disappointed in how it plays out, (assuming reasonable health)

Is St. Louis the best run org in baseball?
I'm biased of course, but I think that it's a good chance they are tied for first with best run organization in sports. Doing enough to be competitive, enough to keep fans interested in the product while still maintaining a profit for the owners etc. Even when they were having their stadium built and Bud Selig was telling all the teams they must force the city to pay as much as possible, the Cardinals did enough of a self finance of the stadium that didn't tick of the tax payers. They seem to be a bit more aware of nuance than many other organizations. (again a clearly biased opinion from me) I think Howard Megdal's book(The Cardinal Way) touched on a lot of what they do right.
   9. Walt Davis Posted: March 24, 2023 at 06:18 PM (#6121306)
Given where pitcher WAR seemed to sit this offseason and that SPs aren't expected to pitch more than 150-180 innings, I'd say the WAR value of this contract is about 4. But the first WAR or two tend to be cheaper so maybe 5 is right. (Not that we can measure it to that level of accuracy anyway.) Ignoring his early career, Mikolas has had 2.6 bWAR/180 which works out to about 1 WAA/180. So the deal is just fine, not very exciting one way or the other.

The question is the aging profile of a pitcher like this. History suggests it's not very good but I think a lot of that history suggests he would have fallen apart already. Hendricks is quite similar and he looked pretty toasty in 2021 and 2022 before getting hurt. Matt Shoemaker turned up as a b-r Mikolas age 31 comp but he was already regularly injured by then. Trachsel aged pretty well but still wasn't a guy you particularly wanted at ages 35-36 (i.e. he was a solid 4/5 starter but you don't pay $20 for those). Tim Hudson aged great but he was much better than any of these guys in his prime.

Any negative reaction mainly amounts to "what's the rush?" This deal would likely have been there for the Cards at the end of the year. But they're the Cards, they know what they're doing.
   10. cardsfanboy Posted: March 24, 2023 at 06:57 PM (#6121309)
"what's the rush?"

It boils down to the number of local articles already written about how the Cardinals have no starting pitcher other than Matz locked in past this year. Now there is a second, with of course youngsters like Libertore, Woodford, Hudson and others vying for the 3rd thru 5th spots instead of trying to project them to the 1/2 spots. Flaherty is a free agent after this season, so was Mikolas, Waino is retiring etc. This gives the team a bit of certainty going forward, and allows Flaherty to show whether or not he's worth an extension/resigning with lower pressure on the team to get it done. And it reduces the need to promote someone earlier than necessary to give them a tryout.
   11. Walt Davis Posted: March 24, 2023 at 09:10 PM (#6121315)
I can't speak to the PR value but I don't really buy that argument. The whole "problem" with this signing is that Mikolas doesn't provide certainty going forward whatsoever due to age and low-K profile. The Cards are just as likely to be sitting there at midseason thinking "oops, we wasted $40 M, we should have extended Flaherty or Montgomery." (And we need to try out next year's potential replacements now.) And just as likely at midseason with an effective Mikolas to then go to him with the 2/$40 offer.

Obviously it would take more years and maybe a bit more AAV but if you were gonna extend anybody early for certainty reasons, it's Montgomery. (And of course they may have tried to.)

But again, Cards know what they're doing. If their baseball nabobs think Mikolas will be fine in 2024-25, I'm not gonna bet against them.
   12. The Duke Posted: March 24, 2023 at 10:55 PM (#6121323)
What's the rush? It's generally how they have done business, extending people early to avoid the angst that comes from "contract year". It also happened because they had only one starter under contract. Finally, Montgomery has been making noise about an extension - ie, how come no one is talking to me ? Signing a nice short term team friendly deal may help set expectations for Monty. Waino is at 18 and Mikolas at 20, they aren't likely doing more than that for Monty.

The reality is Monty is represented by Boras - he's not signing an extension.
   13. Howie Menckel Posted: March 24, 2023 at 11:21 PM (#6121324)
Both things can be true:

- The Cardinals know what they are doing, which is empirically true, given their decades of success.

- This could still be a stupid contract.

I believe that it is dumb, and if they overreacted to the status of the contract situations of their other veteran starters, that would be a very plausible reason why.

Lots of franchises are really smart forever - until they aren't. Nobody gets a lifetime pass.

(and to be clear, this deal - even if it's a bust - isn't going to ruin the franchise. it's not long enough or large enough to accomplish that, and STL has a lot of young and underpriced talent. and that can forgive sins even bigger than this - if it is a sin at all.)
   14. sanny manguillen Posted: March 25, 2023 at 08:53 AM (#6121330)
No, the Pirates made more operating income last year! Cards care too much about winning!

Pirates had Mikolas for 35 days ten years ago, shrewdly arbitraged him from Alex Dickerson into Chris McGuiness.

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