Cardinals Rumors: St. Louis interested in two stud starting pitchers
The St. Louis Cardinals, in need of starting pitching, are interested in Oakland A’s pitchers Frankie Montas and Sean Manaea.
With the injury to Jack Flaherty, and their already thin starting pitching depth, the St. Louis Cardinals were viewed as likely to consider external options to address a suddenly pressing need.
And indeed they are. Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports that the Cardinals are one of many teams interested in Oakland A’s starting pitchers Frankie Montas and Sean Manaea. Among the other teams pursuing the starters includes the New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins, Chicago White Sox, Kansas City Royals and “many more.”
The price to acquire either pitcher is going to be exuberant, and it’s why any potential trade is unlikely. The signing of Corey Dickerson to a $5 million deal makes it possible for the Cardinals to part with one of their outfielders (Harrison Bader?) and that could potentially entice the A’s. But it’s unimaginable that they will do that, as Bader burst onto the scene in 2021 and is increasingly viewed as their center fielder of the future.
Montas, 28, is very intriguing. He’s perhaps the most coveted pitcher on the market, coming off a season in which he posted a 3.37 ERA and 207/57 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 187 innings (32 starts). He has only 448 career innings, which means he does not have much wear and tear, and there’s a belief in league circles that his best days are ahead of him.
Manaea, 30, is a left-hander who has more wear and tear on his arm – 727 innings in six career seasons – and has started over 27 games in three of those seasons. Still, he comes with upside and has shown glimpses of being a very good pitcher, as he posted a 3.91 ERA in 179.1 innings last season.
Both pitchers would provide the Cardinals with another frontline starter, which is something they desperately need. However, Montas is signed until 2024 and Manaea is signed only until 2023, meaning they don’t come with much controllability. Still, two years from Montas is intriguing, though that makes the asking price to acquire him that much higher.
It’s unlikely. But the fact that the Cardinals are even being mentioned with these two players is a sign they realize that they need starting pitching, and fast.