Willson Contreras first year on the St. Louis Cardinals is on thin ice, but here is why the marriage can still work.
It seemed that the honeymoon phase between the two sides lasted about as long as the St. Louis Cardinals have held first place this season. It will take an honest look in the mirror on both sides to reconcile the differences that have certainly mounted. But I still believe there is hope both sides can find a way to make it work and I will shine light why they can make it happen.
I find it hard to believe, even as the reports have mounted, that Willson Contreras is already on the trade block in the midst of his first season of a five-year deal. It has been a rough season for the St. Louis Cardinals, but even for how bad it has been for him behind the plate, did it matter who was catching with how bad the pitching staff has been all season?
What happened earlier in the season in May was something that turned many heads (including my own) after his two-week benching from catching. Especially considering Willson Contreras turned down the World Baseball Classic for the opportunity to jump start his “learning my pitching staff.” His defense was easily my biggest concern for signing him back in the offseason when the rumors were swirling, but even I did not see it possibly being so bad a benching would be coming.
Whatever game preparations that were implemented in spring training when he was learning the so-called “Cardinals Way” did not stick. Actually, it makes you wonder what they worked on at all during that time. They must come to terms with a better understanding of what is needed in his preparation to better help the pitchers.