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Mozeliak, Cards continue to mull pitching market

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SAN DIEGO -- General manager John Mozeliak and several of his baseball operations lieutenants traveled to San Diego, where they spent much of Monday bunkered in the team hotel continuing to discuss and debate potential moves prior to Thursday's 3 p.m. CT non-waiver Trade Deadline.

With 42 hours to go, none of the four contending clubs in the National League Central had yet to make a move to improve their postseason chances. That includes the Cardinals, who remain actively in pursuit of starting pitching, of which there is plenty available. The question, of course, becomes at what cost would the Cardinals be willing to add?

Mozeliak has acknowledged that the Cardinals' priority is pitching. Manager Mike Matheny, citing his hesitancy to talk specifics in fear that it could suggest he's not confident in his current starters, would only say that he remains in regular contact with Mozeliak about the team's external options.

It is, he said, similar to his role during the offseason when he is asked for input before an acquisition.

"They're very similar in the fact that you go in with an idea of 'What can we do to get better?'" Matheny said. "That's the goal in the winter, and that's often the goal when you get down to the end of July. Then you have to do the feasibility stuff and understand as much as you can about not just helping us this year but the long-term health of our organization.

"We're doing things behind closed doors, trying to make our team better."

The Cardinals already have the rotation opening to add a starting pitcher, as the team has been using a four-man rotation since the All-Star break. That luxury can only last until the weekend, as the Cardinals will need a fifth starter on Saturday.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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