St. Louis Cardinal baseball is going to look a little different this season. Who are the players that could make the major league roster?
The St. Louis Cardinals are going to be bigger and better than ever this year! That’s because the 2020 shortened season will be composed of 60-man rosters. Here’s the summary from MLB.com on what the teams will look like:
“To help ease players into competition, each club will have a 30-man roster for the first two weeks, 28 for the next two weeks, and 26 for the remainder of the season. Teams will submit lists of 60 players eligible to play in 2020 — the 40-man roster plus a “taxi squad” of 20 players.”
With a balanced mix between prospects who need playing time, and depth players who could contribute in case of an injury, here are my predictions for the St. Louis Cardinals’ 60-man roster in the 2020 season.
Nothing to be explained here. These guys are integral parts of the team and will be on the active roster at Busch Stadium as much as possible.
Catcher: Yadier Molina, Matt Wieters
Infield: Paul Goldschmidt, Kolten Wong, Tommy Edman, Brad Miller, Paul DeJong, Matt Carpenter, Outfield: Dexter Fowler, Harrison Bader, Tyler O’Neill
Pitchers: Adam Wainwright, Jack Flaherty, Miles Mikolas, Dakota Hudson, Carlos Martinez, Kwang Hyun Kim, Andrew Miller, Jordan Hicks, Giovanny Gallegos, John Gant
THE REST OF THE BULLPEN:
Each of these relievers will make an appearance. In the shortened season, the hottest ones at the beginning of the year will be the ones that stick around the longest
Right-handed relievers: Ryan Helsley, Daniel Ponce de Leon
Left-handed relievers: Tyler Webb, Brett Cecil, Austin Gomber
THE BENCH BATS/DH OPTIONS:
With the DH coming to the NL, there is a lot more opportunity for these four guys to make an impact. Each plays a different position, and will be counted on at some point to help the big league squad
Catcher: Andrew Knizer
First base: Rangel Ravelo
Middle Infield: Edmundo Sosa
Outfield: Lane Thomas
THE REST OF THE 40-MAN ROSTER:
These six pitchers and three batters are an odd mix. Some are top prospects being protected from the Rule 5 draft, while others you might never have heard of. Either way, expect these ten to all be on the 60-man roster in some shape or form
Batters: Elehueris Montero, Austin Dean, Justin Williams
Pitchers: Genesis Cabrera, Junior Fernandez, Alex Reyes, Ricardo Sanchez, Alvaro Seijas, Jake Woodford
NON-ROSTER INVITES COMPETING TO REPLACE JOHN BREBBIA:
If you’ve been counting along, you might be wondering why only 39 players have been listed. That’s because John Brebbia is on the IL for the rest of the year after undergoing Tommy John surgery. There is one spot open on the 40-man roster now, so here are the eight players, in order, with the best chance to take his spot. Each of them were non-roster invites to Spring Training, so they should be familiar.
1. Dylan Carlson – obvious choice, there might be a revolt if he doesn’t make it
2. Max Schrock – the next Descalso-Edman Cardinals sensation
3. Kodi Whitley – fantastic Spring Training
4. Griffin Roberts – I’m biased, go Wake Forest
5. Seth Elledge, Johan Oviedo, Evan Kruczynski– solid pitchers that could surprise us
6. John Nogowski– had a solid spring, is sneaky good defensively
TOP PROSPECTS FOR THE TAXI SQUAD:
With the 13 remaining spots on the 60-man roster, I expect the Cardinals to give some top prospects some playing time and development that they would otherwise be missing. While this is difficult to project, the Cards have enough depth in the 57 players listed above that I think they will be ok without having to call on one of these guys to produce in the big leagues in 2020. Players drafted last month have an asterisk next to their name.
Batters: Ivan Herrerra, Nolan Gorman, Jordan Walker*, Julio Rodriguez, Luken Baker, Jhon Torres
Pitchers: Matthew Liberatore, Zack Thompson, Mason Wynn*, Tink Hence*, Angel Rondon, Levi Prater*, Ian Bedellan*
SLEEPERS TO WATCH OUT FOR:
If someone on the list above doesn’t make the 60-man team, it will be because one of these 11 prospects took their spot. Here they are, in order of most likely to make it to the taxi squad in Springfield. Again, players drafted last month have an asterisk next to their name.
- Kramer Robertson
- Conner Capel
- Delvin Perez
- Mateo Gil
- Andrew Burleson*
- LJ Jones*
- Trejyn Fletcher
- Malcolm Nunez
- Roel Ramirez
- Toney Locey
- Derian Gonzalez
There you have it. 27 batters and 33 pitchers make up my official 2020 roster prediction. We won’t see all of them in St. Louis this year, and if everyone stays healthy, we might not even see more than half of them. All I know is that I’m counting down the days until the game starts back up again. It’s going to be an exciting and fast-paced rest of the year.
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These are arguably the most important 72 players in the Cardinals organization. I gotta say, it’s a good looking group. The future of the St. Louis Cardinals looks bright at every position. The full rosters will be announced on Sunday at 3:00 PM, so we won’t have long to wait to see.