It's no secret this offseason that the Baltimore Orioles need starting pitching and the St. Louis Cardinals want a new shortstop. It would appear that would make the two teams good trading partners, but the first go round was unsuccessful as the Orioles were unable to pry rookie pitcher Shelby Miller away from the Cardinals in return for shortstop J.J. Hardy.
The report of the trade came from CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, who stated that while the Cardinals have pitching to spare, the Miller is simply too high an asking price in return for Hardy, who is only under contract through 2014.
If the Orioles want to trade Hardy for a starting pitcher on the Cardinals, they might have to aim a little lower, perhaps pitchers like Lance Lynn or Joe Kelly would be better options. Both Lynn and Kelly would fit into the Orioles rotation, but neither is considered to have the high ceiling of Miller. And if Hardy isn't worth Miller to the Cardinals, then certainly both Carlos Martinez and Trevor Rosenthal are also off the table.
I am a big fan of Hardy and would hate to see him in another uniform, but it's a smart move to put him out on the market to try and see what he can bring back, pitching wise. With only one year left on his contract, if the Orioles can bring someone back who will help over the long term, it's something that should be considered. He's coming off of a big season in which he won his second consecutive Gold Glove and the Silver Slugger at his position, and would be a great addition to a contending team like the Cardinals.
The biggest concern to me is of the health of Manny Machado. He's spending the off season recovering from knee surgery and might not be ready to come back to start the season, especially at shortstop.
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