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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

St. Louis Cardinals: Kevin Siegrist's 2013 season will be impossible to repeat in 2014

Now before you dive deep into this dribble regarding St. Louis Cardinals reliever Kevin Siegrist, I must provide some clarification. The title of this article may lead you to think I do not believe that Siegrist will be very good in 2014.

I believe quite the contrary. I think Siegrist could and should be very good this season for the Cardinals in what may end up being an expanded role if Carlos Martinez jumps to the rotation and Jason Motte is not ready to hold down the eighth inning set-up man role.

But, I do believe, that it will be nearly impossible for Siegrist to repeat the success he was able to enjoy last season, when he broke on to the scene as a virtual unknown and made himself quite a weapon down the stretch for the Cardinals.

Siegrist was practically unhittable for most of 2013.

Opponents hit a paltry .128 off of Siegrist with a putrid .195 slugging percentage and if Siegrist would have avoided issuing 18 free passes in his 39.2, his .432 OPS against would have been even lower.

Siegrist was equally tough against righties and lefties. Lefties predictably struggled, hitting just .118 in 68 at bats while righties managed just a .138 average in 65 at bats.

His 0.45 ERA was easily the best on Cardinals and among all relievers with at least 20 innings pitched in all of baseball.

2013 was an amazing season for Kevin Siegrist and likely, impossible to repeat.

If Siegrist is able to duplicate his 2013 over the course of the entire 2014 season, he would easily be an All-star.

Many Cardinals fans get extremely excited about the Cardinals bullpen heading into 2014 because of the combination of Siegrist and closer Trevor Rosenthal. The duo could become one of the more dynamic one-two punches in baseball at the back-end of any bullpen.

And Siegrist has a lot of wiggle room to help attain such a status.

There is no way he will be as good in 2014 as he was in 2013, nor does he need to be. Nobody should be asking him to be or expecting him to be so dominant.

But he will need to be very good and help shore up a bullpen that has an extremely high upside that also carries great risks.