The Suppan Effect

Because of Jeff Suppan, Carlos Villanueva was rumored to be sent down to the minors, despite not giving up a run. Because of Jeff Suppan, Mitch Stetter WAS sent down to the minors despite not giving up a run.

People like A.J. Murray, Tim Dillard and even Zach Braddock were rumored to be removed from the Nashville Roster after the roster move all because of Jeff Suppan.

Because of Jeff Suppan, Chris Narveson and Manny Parra were placed in the bullpen when one of them could have been in the rotation.

Because of Jeff Suppan, the rest of the rotation got a bit realigned and now Soup is in the 3 hole. This also affects which days Zaun and Kottaras start.

Because of Jeff Suppan's contract we presumably couldn't spend more money this offseason.

At the time of the signing of Suppan, we got a guy with a career record of 106-101 with a 4.60 ERA.

He was 44-26 with a 3.95 ERA over the last three regular seasons before the signing.

Now, he is 135-135 with a 4.68 ERA.

Those wins he got? They were on some good Cardinals teams. They really won the game in spite of the runs he gave up, not really BECAUSE he pitched so well.

You fast forward some years after the signing to get to today and his ERA has only gone up eight hundredths of a point.I am not defending Suppan by any means, but I do think that even I overestimated how bad he was really doing. He does seem to give up the long ball a lot, but there have definitely been worse starters out there for sure.

I think the bad thing was the money Melvin spent to get Suppan. Never thought I would say it, but that is the worst thing about the whole deal, not necessarily Suppan's results.


The ironic thing is, we apparently overpaid to get Soup because we had just traded away Doug Davis to get Greg Aquino, Johnny Estrada and Claudio Vargas. Yeah thats right we needed a durable starting pitcher after trading Davis so we paid for Soup. Today? We have both on the team!


I would love it IF for one season Suppan gets a bit on the sunny side of .500 with say I don't know a 15-10 record with a 4.04 era. I don't see it happening, but at least it would make me feel slightly better about the contract that Melvin doled out.

One thing I don't get though, is that our ballclub supposedly made a legitimate and competitive offer to CC. If CC took our offer, he would be on the club making around $20 to $25 million a year.

So if we were going to pay $20 to $25 million a year for one guy, I think we probably could have afforded to cut Suppan and get Pedro Martinez for a prorated $5 million this season. Or maybe we could have coaxed Glavine out of retirement. There is one year and $20 million dollars spent instead of the 5 years or so we would have spent 20 Million a year on CC.

Point I am trying to make is, even though Suppan's results were not even quite as bad as I remembered, I also think that building a competitive ballclub and putting a good product on the field that gives you a chance to win is important. Cutting the guy and taking a flier on people like Glavine, Pedro, or Mulder would have made me feel so much better. Don't give me the excuse Suppan is in there because of his contract, when we would have shelled out more than 20 Million a year for five years on one guy.

Thanks Doug.


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