Looking to upgrade at middle infield, and still backward on where they should, the St. Louis Cardinals acquired Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Ryan Theriot Tuesday afternoon, trading swingman Blake Hawksworth in exchange. Theriot, a non-tender candidate after the Dodgers locked up Juan Uribe for three years, hit .270/.321/.312 in 2010, split between the Dodgers and the Chicago Cubs. After coming up with the Cubs in 2005 Theriot, 31 next year, has hit .284/.348/.356.
According to Ken Rosenthal the Cardinals view Theriot as a shortstop, which is where this starts to look less than enticing. The Cardinals have two infielders who did not hit last year and have shown an ability to hit a little in the past. One of them can't play defense; the other is bog-standard on defense; the third is one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball. Apparently they plan on non-tendering Brendan Ryan.
Theriot, for his part, is excited to be "finally on the right side of the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry." To be honest, given the Cardinals' plans for mismanaging their interchangeable infield personnel I'm less excited than usual about the Cub-to-Cardinals fan conversion.