When GM John Moeliak announced that the Cardinals were going to go with in-house candidates to fill the closer's job, Chris Perez was the odds on favorite to win the position.
After all, he has been the Cardinals closer of the future for two years and he was given a chance to dip his toe in the water at the end of last season. At the time, it seemed pretty obvious that he was being prepped for the job.
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But manager Tony La Russa announced last week that Ryan Franklin was the current leader in the race for the stopper spot. And since then, Perez has been terrible while Motte has been getting more chances to audition for the closer role.
On Saturday, Franklin finished the Cardinals game with two innings of shutout ball against the Braves. According to Rotoworld, Franklin has struck out seven times as many hitters as he has walked this spring and has allowed only one run and four hits in Grapefruit League play.