2 different ways the St. Louis Cardinals should structure their lineup

May 4, 2022; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) scores after hitting a three run home run against the Kansas City Royals in the first inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
May 4, 2022; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) scores after hitting a three run home run against the Kansas City Royals in the first inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports /
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Albert Pujols #5 of the St. Louis Cardinals celebrates with with Dylan Carlson #3 and Tyler O’Neill #27 after hitting a home run in the third inning of a game against the Milwaukee Brewers at American Family Field on April 17, 2022 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Albert Pujols #5 of the St. Louis Cardinals celebrates with with Dylan Carlson #3 and Tyler O’Neill #27 after hitting a home run in the third inning of a game against the Milwaukee Brewers at American Family Field on April 17, 2022 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /

How the Cardinals Should Lineup Against Left-Handed Pitching

  1. SS Tommy Edman
  2. 1B Paul Goldschmidt
  3. LF Tyler O’Neill
  4. 3B Nolan Arenado
  5. DH Albert Pujols/Juan Yepez
  6. RF Dylan Carlson
  7. CF Harrison Bader
  8. 2B Nolan Gorman
  9. C Yadier Molina/Andrew Knizner 

Already one of the league’s best verses left-handed pitching, only a few adjustments need made to this lineup.

In his 17 plate appearances versus left handed pitching, Albert Pujols has an OPS of 1.346 with 2 HRs and 4 RBI already this season. Oli Marmol has attempted to give Pujols action against right handed pitching, but he is currently slashing .083/.185/.083 and is clearly only able to hit left handed pitching at this point in his career. If Pujols can continue his performance versus lefties, he will DH in the 5 spot against left handed starters and serve as a matchup pitch hitter late in games throughout the year.

Should Pujols struggle though, Juan Yepez has mashed left handed pitching this year,  with an OPS of 1.140, 3 HR and 14 RBI in 33 plate appearances. Yepez is an elite option against left handed pitching as well and may find starts against them when the corner outfielders or infielders need to rest.

Nolan Gorman has not shown very good on base skills versus left handed pitching with a batting average of .226 and on base percentage of .306, but has managed an .822 OPS due to his .516 slugging percentage. Starting him against left handers gives the Cardinals elite power at the bottom of the order, and if a right hander enters the game, a complete masher in the 8 spot that would come in handy late in games.

If the Cardinals decide to make these lineup changes, the club will undoubtably become one of the best lineups in the National League, if not all of baseball. Benching players like Corey Dickerson and Paul DeJong in favor of Juan Yepez and Nolan Gorman revamps the starting lineup and strengthens the bench at the same time.

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