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Edward Mujica may be closing for the Cardinals

Apr 15, 2013, 9:57 AM EDT

Edward Mujica

With Jason Motte out, and Mitchell Boggs and Trevor Rosenthal struggling, who is closing for the Cardinals? Todd Worrell? Jeff Lahti? Nope: Derrick Goold reports that Edward Mujica may get the job next:

Pitching coach Derek Lilliquist said the team has “flexibility in whatever we want to do” when it comes to rearranging late-game roles. Matheny has resisted snap decisions after losses. He’s twice in the past week pledged his support for Boggs, who is two for four in save opportunities, and Rosenthal as his answers to hold leads. Veteran Edward Mujica, who usually pitches the seventh, rescued the Cardinals from the ninth Sunday by retiring both batters he faced. He could be the immediate alternative in save situations.

Mujica has only allowed one run in five innings of work so far. And after a another day where the Cards’ bullpen couldn’t get the job done, he may be the guy closing going forward.

  1. historiophiliac - Apr 15, 2013 at 10:16 AM

    Valverde is available, if you gents need another option. God knows the Cards could use a little V-Wiggle.

    • tuberippin - Apr 15, 2013 at 1:03 PM

      Valverde signed a minor-league deal with the Tigers…

  2. heyblueyoustink - Apr 15, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    What, no Lee Smith?

  3. spudchukar - Apr 15, 2013 at 10:34 AM

    Andrew Bailey would be my first thought. But the Cards will expend all internal options first. Lance Lynn could be sent back to the pen, but he is an 18 game winning, All-Star, and deserves to stay in the rotation. Nothing will happen as long as the Red Birds stay atop their division, first with the excuse that the Motte TJ decision isn’t a certainty, and then that any other option would be too pricey.

    Finally, when forced to, the brass will act. As I stated in the ATH comments, the Cards have 32+ mil coming off their books in 2014, with no real need, so they should be able to afford to procure a dependable closer, but I’m not holding my breath.

    Mujica could be a stop-gap, but the dude has little if any experience there, is ideal in the 7th inning role, and his absence from that spot, only creates another hole, that I am not too sure that Salas can be counted on to fill.

  4. cardinalcrazy - Apr 15, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    Should the Cardinals consider calling up Wacha and have him take over the closer role or is it too early?

    • umrguy42 - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:05 AM

      Tough to say. I mean, when Isringhausen went down in 2006, they plugged Wainwright in, and that worked out pretty well. Not sure what experience Waino had in the bigs at that point (not a lot, I thought), though, especially vs Wacha.

      • spudchukar - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM

        Wainwright had virtually no experience. However, the Cards aren’t looking at a one-year need. Motte won’t pitch in 2014 either, and even in 2015 he isn’t a certainty. Not sure why Kelly is taking up space on the current roster. Trade bait, perhaps, but he needs to be pitching to improve his command, and he really isn’t a very good bull pen option.

        As mentioned above, Lynn could be called upon, but it is tough to pull an 18 game winner and all-star from the rotation. I could see the Cards giving up Kelly, and perhaps another B grade prospect for someone like Bailey, but it should be with the idea that he will command the job for a couple of years.

      • umrguy42 - Apr 15, 2013 at 12:06 PM

        Spud, it could be a temporary option – one could see what’s available at the trade deadline, or at the end of the year in free agency.

    • spudchukar - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:50 AM

      I haven’t seen enough of Wacha to form a knowledgeable opinion, but since he has a variety of pitches, he is probably more suited to start. Cards do not have a lot of leverage here, but as much as I want them to act quickly, not if it means giving up any of their top 5 or so prospects. So who knows, maybe they ought to give Wacha a shot.

  5. melkipershero - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    Brian Wilson?

    • spudchukar - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      God, I hope not, nor Valverde either. Trying to figure out some viable options, perhaps Gregerson from San Diego, maybe one of the bull pen guys from the White Sox. Clippard from Washington might work, but I doubt if the Nats are in a dealing mood, especially to St. Louis. Bailey probably is the best choice.

  6. cardslifer - Apr 15, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    Mujica has the stuff. He doesn’t fool around and walk people. He throws strikes.

    The funny thing is If you don’t have Mujica throwing in the 7th his services won’t be needed to close in the 9th with the Cardinals recent bullpen woes.


  7. westcoastredbird - Apr 15, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    Let Mujica keep the 7th, Boggs the 8th that’s where they are comfortable and flourish. Give Rosenthal Nd Kelly the closer role. Why screw up the 7th and 8th that don’t need fixing. Come on Mawinnie don’t try to out think the room!

    • stlouis1baseball - Apr 15, 2013 at 3:54 PM

      With ya’ West Coast. Not real comfortable with Mujica in the Closers role.
      I like your idea. Either way…this feels like it’s gonna’ be an issue all season.

    • stlouis1baseball - Apr 15, 2013 at 4:07 PM

      What Westcoast said. I feel like this is going to be a season long issue.
      Either way…I am not realy comfortable with Mujica playing the closer role.

  8. stlouis1baseball - Apr 15, 2013 at 4:49 PM

    Stupid “server performing routing maintenance” bullshit.
    So it double posts…within 10 – 15 minutes of each other?

  9. cardinals50 - Apr 15, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Hopefully MM will give Mujica the ball in the 8th and keep Boggs in there for the 9th. In each recent loss Rosenthal has given up runs in the 8th inning to either tie the game or to pull within a run. Giving the opposing team the momentum going into the ninth. I like Rosenthal’s potential and believe he belongs on the Cards roster but he is still young.

    Let Rosenthal pitch the 7th instead. Gives them a more experienced guy (Mujica) to set the table for Boggs. After TR gets rolling they will have enough confidence throughout the bullpen to plug any of those guys in. Especially if the starters keep rolling the way they have been. :)

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