According to sources, the Cardinals have signed pitcher Matt Clement to a one-year deal with a club option for 2009.
The best thing about it, in my mind, is the club option. If Clement is healthy and effective, he’ll help out ’08 but would really be a boon in 2009, when Carpenter is healthy and the team has hopefully signed another top pitcher to go into the rotation with him and Wainwright. A 2009 staff of Carp-FA-Wainwright-Clement-? would probably be enough to put the Cards back into contention fairly quickly.
This also may mean that the Cardinals are close to dealing Anthony Reyes. Right now, the rotation is Wainwright, Mulder (if ready for ST), Pineiro, Clement and Looper. That leaves Reyes and others such as Todd Wellemeyer and Brad Thompson out of the picture, at least for now. Of course, we don’t know how Mulder is going to start the season or if he’ll be ready, but I’d think a deal like this would give Mozeliak more breathing room to send Reyes somewhere for a hitter or perhaps package him with Duncan for a bigger name.
It’ll be interesting to see how this deal compares to the Mark Prior deal.