St. Louis Cardinals Hot Stove: Will they dare look at Johnny Cueto?


Lance Lynn is down for the count and St. Louis Cardinals’ GM John Mozeliak has said the team could potentially look into signing a starting pitcher on a multi-year deal. We’ve already talked about adding David Price (probably the most coveted and talked about free agent), now let’s look at another potential target. You may not like it, but Johnny Cueto is a free agent and the Cardinals very well could kick the tires on him at least. Let’s look at why Cueto could be valuable to this team. 

This season Cueto went 11-13 with a 3.44 ERA between Cincinnati and Kansas City, not his best year. This was mostly inflated in Kansas City, where he had a 4.76 ERA in 81.1 innings pitched. I really look at him to get a lot of big offers this free agency. However, with the questions surrounding his ability to pitch in the AL and his inconsistency issues, the number of teams that could be interested in him could be diminished as could be his potential value.

There are a lot of big names out there in this market, there’s Price, Zack Greinke, Jordan Zimmermann, John Lackey, etc.. So, many of the teams with a starting pitching need could go after any of those names before they would consider a Johnny Cueto.  

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The reason I would like to have Cueto as a Cardinal? Look, I know he ruined Jason Larue’s career and the rest of his life, but let’s get over that. It was six years ago and Cueto was 23, who didn’t do something stupid when they were 23. The fact of the matter is that Cueto is good. He has a career ERA of 3.30 and a career K/9 of 7.42. He had an ERA of 2.62 and a WHIP of 0.934, with the Reds this past year as he looked like a dominant CY Young candidate, before he was traded to the Royals.

Cueto has done all of this pitching most of his career in an extreme hitters park, where homers fly out regularly. He also has a 36-15 record against the Brewers, Pirates, and Cubs with an ERA of 2.71 against those three teams the Cardinals will play for a large portion of the season. With his familiarity of the NL Central and strong overall ERA, Cueto is an obvious fit and he could be had a bit cheaper than Price or Greinke.

For the Cardinals, this seems like a no brainer. Especially if you do as I said and throw out the incident in the 2010 game. However, with two of those guys from that team still being with the team (Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina), it could be a locker room issue. However, they’re grown men and hopefully they can get over the issue. 

Next: Could David Price and the Cardinals be a match?

I definitely would expect the Cardinals’ to at least kick the tires on Cueto. What are your thoughts? Surely, you will tell me in the comments.