Subtract a Reliever
Neither John Gant or John Brebbia has a meaningful role on this Cardinals team, and either pitcher could be optioned back to Triple-A to tighten up the bullpen and open up another spot on the bench. Gant was ineffective in his Cardinals debut on Tuesday night–which, in fairness to him, came a whole week after he was called up–giving up three hits, including two homers, and two walks over 3 1/3 innings. He likely won’t be available for a couple days anyway, so he’d be an easy subtraction.
Brebbia, a 27-year-old who was pitching in independent ball two years ago, finally saw luck turn against him on Tuesday night, as he allowed a two-run homer to Scooter Gennett. Brebbia has impressive fastball velocity, but Matheny has only shown a desire to use him as a mop-up guy in blowouts, and those opportunities could just as easily be distributed to Brett Cecil or Tyler Lyons.
If Mozeliak wants to force Matheny to maximize the opportunities for every guy on his 25-man roster, he’d cut back to a 12-man pitching staff and keep both Peralta and DeJong on the bench.
Of course, there’s one more thing Mozeliak could do that would really put his struggling team on notice: