The St. Louis Cardinals need to find ways to improve the club’s offensive production at catcher. Here are three realistic targets for St. Louis.
Since the 2004 season, the St. Louis Cardinals have penciled in future Hall of Famer Yadier Molina in at the catcher almost every day. The question facing the club each season was who could fill in when Molina needed a day off, but the starting spot was never in question.
Now with a steep decline in performance and a clear need to play less than ever before for his own health, Molina cannot be relied on as the traditional, primary catcher he once was.
St. Louis has struggled to find an internal option to take the pressure off of Molina this season. Backup Andrew Knizner started off hot but has fallen off dramatically, prospect Ivan Herrera appears to still be a year away after his short stints in St. Louis, and veteran Austin Romine is not a viable option for a contending team.
The Cardinals offense has been the bright spot for the club in 2022, but the catcher position has weighed the club down significantly at the plate, even when Molina plays. The club ranks 28th in baseball in OPS from the catcher position. sitting at .510. Molina has the highest BA of the bunch, sitting at .213. This will not cut it if the team wants to make a run in October.
If Molina can be relied upon in a spilt role with another catcher, the team should expect greater production all round from behind the plate. The club seriously needs to consider adding a catcher at the deadline, and here are three options that would be great adds for the club.