Some of the Cardinals youngsters aren't so young

Posted by Scott Wuerz on January 18, 2014 

I wonder if the St. Louis Cardinals' new third baseman will follow the career trajectory of the guy he's expected to replace.

While people tend to think of Matt Carpenter is a young kid because he's relatively new on the major league scene, he's actually 28 years old. That's the same age David Freese was in 2011, his first year with more than 300 at bats in the majors.

On one hand, 28 is a good age for a player. A guy who is in his late 20s is typically going to stand up to pressure better than a guy who is 21 or 22. But the down side is that it seemed like Freese had barely been established before it was time to go.

Carpenter is set to be a free agent after the 2017 season -- at which time he would be 32 years old. I wonder if the Redbirds will be interesting in committing to Carpenter long-term because of his age.

While the Cardinals are thought of as a young team because of their pitching staff, "young" player Allen Craig with 329 games under his belt, is 29. Jon Jay, who debuted at about the same time as Craig, is the same age.

While Craig signed a four-year deal last season, it might be tough for the Cardinals to keep players who haven't established the lifetime of financial security that major leaguers have come to expect if they don't want to pay beyond the player's prime.


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