On Saturday, Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reported that Jhonny Peralta was closing in on a free agent deal with the St. Louis Cardinals. Here is his tweet:
Free agent Jhonny Peralta closing in on a deal with #STLcards, source confirms.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) November 24, 2013
So does it make sense for the Cardinals to pursue Jhonny Peralta?
He would be an offensive upgrade at shortstop. In 2013, Peralta hit .303 with 11 home runs and 55 RBIs. However, he was suspended for 50 games due to the Biogensis scandal. That begs the question. Is Peralta able to hit without being juiced up? It seems that Peralta has put that behind him and is ready to move on with his career.
Peralta is ranked 9th in career fielding percentage at .9796. So he is a great defensive shortstop and he isn’t a liability when he comes to the plate. He is a elite shortstop that could provide a spark for the Cardinals offense. In Detroit, Jhonny Peralta batted 6th in the potent Tigers lineup. With the Cardinals, I project him to stay in the 6th spot. He would have the chance to bat 2nd in the lineup. However, his lack of speed makes it difficult to put in the 2 spot. So that doesn’t help the pathetic stolen bases number the Cardinals had in 2013.
So does it make sense for the Cardinals to acquire Jhonny Peralta?
Why? Although his speed on the bases is lacking, he will provide the offensive spark the Cardinals were missing from the 6th spot with David Freese in 2013. If the Cardinals do put Peralta 2nd in the lineup, he would help advance Matt Carpenter around the bases to set up Matt Holliday, Allen Craig and Yadier Molina for a big inning.
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