The St. Louis Cardinals' bullpen is more solid-looking going into the 2013 season than it has been in years. Granted: Part of it's the nickname. Jason Motte, Mitchell Boggs, and Edward Mujica are fine right-handed relievers in their own right, but as MuBogMot they're a coherent, reptilian whole. And you don't get a lot of coherent wholes in a bullpen, particularly two years running.
Add in Choateczynski—left-handed chimera name pending—and you're nearly all the way through the Opening Day bullpen. A 12-man staff leaves you with two spots, to be divvied among Fernando Salas and/or two classes of minor league pitchers.
The relief lifers have mostly seen better days. Maikel Cleto, after pitching well-enough in the rotation to confuse all the people who assumed he'd be a reliever, struggled last year upon his conversion to relief. His peripherals were pretty good, so I expect better in 2013, but in general it's not a great time to be Maikel Cleto—everybody's co-opted his hard-throwing schtick.
Meanwhile: Eduardo Sanchez. Sanchez was a mess last year, enough of a mess to serve as our annual reminder that relievers will break your heart and are not to be trusted, not even when their slider is death.
Will the St. Louis Cardinals' bullpen feature Trevor Rosenthal, Joe Kelly, or the field?
Viva El Birdos | Feb 10