Constructing the St. Louis Cardinals’ Best 25-Man Postseason Roster
Sep 16, 2015; Milwaukee, WI, USA; St. Louis Cardinals outfielders Stephen Piscotty (55), Thomas Pham (60) and Jason Heyward (22) celebrate following the game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. The Cardinals won 5-4. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Starters: Matt Holliday, Randal Grichuk, Jason Heyward
Platoons: Stephen Piscotty, Tommy Pham
Once again, the Cardinals are embedded into the dilemma of playoff experience against potential starpower. The biggest motive for constructing the outfield will be the health of the starters, as options such as Jon Jay and Peter Bourjos may provide more positional flexibility at the opportunity cost of less production.
However, many could argue that St. Louis may not be in their current position without the contributions of midseason call-ups Tommy Pham and Stephen Piscotty and that both could carry over their recent successes as a result. Both have different levels of upside outside of their offensive abilities, as Piscotty has has yet to record an error at first base, while Pham has patrolled center field in many of his spot starts.
Besides Jason Heyward, nearly every Cardinals’ outfielder with consistent starting opportunities has pushed through a severe injury at some point this season. Ultimately, these outfielders will test their physical boundaries in the postseason, rather it means Randal Grichuk aiming to make harder throws with an ailing right elbow or Matt Holliday running faster through quad issues.
More importantly, if Stephen Piscotty can stay healthy and match his production prior to last week’s collision scare, the Cardinals can feel more confident about their rare outfield situation. Nevertheless, Jason Heyward may serve as the best model of consistency in October if he can replicate the success that led to a .318 second half batting average and 10 outfield assists.