It’s been said more than once, by more than one person, Cardinals fan or not:
The Colby Rasmus trade was an all-in move for the 2011 Cards.
All of sports has adopted the strategic poker move as a euphemism for taking extreme measures or doing everything in one’s power to accomplish a goal.
After last night’s game four, if we’re to continue the poker motif, it seems fair to say John Mozeliak has won his all-in gamble and doubled up.
Bearing in mind that for now, we can only judge the trade in it’s current context – potential still exists for the deal to wind up a stinker in the long-term – I don’t think it could be considered anything but a rousing success.
Rasmus faltered (further) down the stretch, while Edwin Jackson shined. Octavio Dotel found success in well-placed situations and Marc Rzepczynski has been as advertised versus left-handed hitters.
Last night, all three played their respective roles as we’ve come to expect over the last month. Jackson struggled in the first inning only to settle in and give the Cardinals another great start and a chance to win. Dotel got his two uneventful outs. Rzepczynski struck out a left-handed hitter to strand a runner. Clockwork.
It is difficult to imagine the Cardinals of July and August being in the position they will find themselves in on Friday night – on the brink of returning to the National League Championship Series.
Indeed, the Cardinals of September and October, the team that forced their way into the playoffs, into the comparisons with a certain 2006 club, and back into the hearts of Cardinal fans everywhere – is a team born of Mozeliak having the stones to complete an unpopular deal that he insisted would improve the club.
He was right. So much so, in fact, that maybe one of our Twitter followers, @utnick98, said it best last night (in response to a crack about Rasmus making the game-ending catch with less effort than Jon Jay):
Who gives a [expletive] about Colby Rasmus?
I’m not certain I could’ve said it more potently or accurately myself.
Perhaps it’s time to start looking back on this trade as “the Edwin Jackson trade”.