WOW: The Cardinals Are Removing Willson Contreras From Catching Duties
The chatter about Willson Contreras’s catching ability wasn’t exactly positive heading into free agency, but I don’t think anyone expected he would get effectively bounced from catching just a month into the season.
Today, the Cardinals brought up minor league catcher Tres Barrera to catch Adam Wainwright’s return to the rotation, rather than letting Contreras do the job.
It turns out, it’s not just a one-off. This is ugly stuff already:
The Cardinals’ rotation has been a disaster, and although I won’t claim to know exactly how the “soft factors” work in the Cardinals’ clubhouse, it sure doesn’t seem like Contreras as a catcher has worked out well for them, especially after transitioning from one of the best soft-factor catchers ever in Yadier Molina.
If Contreras hadn’t gone on about wanting to tweak the Cubs and Cubs fans, about how the Cardinals are the superior organization, and about how he dreamt of being a Cardinal while he was still sitting in the Cubs’ dugout, I wouldn’t get so much pleasure out of this stuff. But he did, so I am.
Even if you’re not into the SCardenfreude of it, you can at least be heartened that the Cubs were clearly right about Contreras not being the guy they wanted behind the plate going forward, even if they liked the bat and the effort.
As for the Cardinals and Contreras, they’re trying to say the right things, but the actions SCREAM louder than words.
Contreras even reached out to Yadier Molina to try to get some assurances about how he was doing (apparently it didn’t impact the Cardinals’ decision):
Anyway, this all sets up the Cardinals’ series against the Cubs, at Wrigley Field, starting on Monday. My word.