Cheap Seats

Could the Cards' answer be found in the desert?

Now that Roy Oswalt is off the market, the Cardinals need to find a fallback position.

One possibility is Edwin Jackson, who is reported to be on the trading block as the Diamondbacks fire sale gathers steam.

According to a report in the LA Times, Arizona wants to dump as much salary as possible. So it sounds like they are reasonable on prospects as long as they don't have to eat salary in a prospective deal.

Jackson isn't having the best year -- despite the fact that he threw a no-hitter. He's got a 6-10 record with a 5.16 ERA while striking out 104 and walking 60. He's given up 141 hits in 134 1/3 innings pitched. But he was 13-9 with a 3.62 ERA last season for Detroit.

The Birds could potentially address their needs the best if they made a package trade for Jackson and an infielder -- either second baseman Kelly Johnson or shortstop Stephen Drew. Actually, with the way the Cardinals have been playing up the middle, why not ask for both of them? I'd give up Colby Rasmus and a minor leaguer or two (not Shelby Miller) for Johnson, Drew and Jackson.

3B Lopez

SS Drew

1B Pujols

LF Holliday

RF Ludwick

CF Jay

2B Johnson

 C Molina

Jackson is cheap for the rest of this season with a hair over $1.5 million left. Next season he's under contract for $8.5 million, which fits nicely in the Cardinals budget in the slot that was filled in 2010 by Brad Penny.