Dylan Carlson is going to play a vital role in the St. Louis Cardinals, and one outlet believes he could win Rookie of the Year.
The St. Louis Cardinals are hoping that Dylan Carlson takes the next step this season.
He was among the only locks to start in the outfield on Opening Day, with Harrison Bader being the other before being sidelined with a forearm injury. But with Bader out, the Cardinals will need Carlson to step up even more, especially early on in the season — and MLB on FOX believes that Carlson will not only do that, but win National League Rookie of the Year.
Carlson is among the top outfield prospects in baseball, and will be instrumental in the Cardinals’ success this season. There were reasons why they were not more aggressive in pursuing upgrades and Carlson was a big part of it. They want to get him, and all their other young outfielders, ample playing time to see what they have long-term.
The group, which features Carlson, Bader, Lane Thomas and Tyler O’Neill, comes with plenty of talent but also questions. But long term, Carlson is the most likely piece to lead the unit barring an outside acquisition of a proven star. His tools suggest that he is up for the task.
Despite a rough start last season, Carlson bounced back. His numbers improved during the last couple weeks of the regular season. This spring, despite a slow start, he entered Tuesday hitting .294. And with Bader out, it is entirely possible that Carlson begins the regular season in center field before shifting back to right when Bader returns.
His strong spring, and defensive abilities, set up Carlson to be an impact player for the Cardinals almost immediately. And it figures to put him squarely in the mix to be the Rookie of the Year.