The Cardinals will have the best lineup in baseball
The Cardinals already have one of the best lineups in baseball when healthy, but this lineup will become the deadliest in the game by mid-season in 2023.
St. Louis can expect sluggers Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado to maintain elite, MVP level play for at least one more season, giving St. Louis a scary 1-2 punch. What makes the club even scarier is who will be surrounding those two bats.
The continued development of Nolan Gorman, Dylan Carlson, Tyler O’Neill, Tommy Edman, Brendan Donovan, and Juan Yepez will give the club bats up and down the lineup who can hit with the best of them. Gorman, Carlson, O’Neill, and Edman all have the ability to be All-Stars for the club, with the first trio being bats who can change the game any given night.
The biggest game changer for the club will be the addition of Jordan Walker, who national writers already project as the NL Rookie of the Year next season, will provide a young slugger in the mold of other young starts in baseball.
Just take a look at the potential firepower any given night (lineup could be constructed different ways).
CF Dylan Carlson
2B Nolan Gorman
1B Paul Goldschmidt
3B Nolan Arenado
LF Tyler O’Neill
RF Jordan Walker
DH Juan Yepez
SS Tommy Edman
C Ivan Herrera
Any given night, 1-8 of the lineup can change the game at the plate. There is elite length to this lineup, and the ability to add runs throughout the game and breakout for huge innings. Even without major improvements to pitching (more on that later…), this lineup can put up runs at an elite rate that will win ball games.
This lineup does not even include Donovan or Harrison Bader, two other outstanding options for the bottom of the team’s order. The team could fill out the bench with the likes of Lars Nootbaar, Edmundo Sosa, and Andrew Knizner, or they have the payroll flexibility to fill out the bench even further.
Expect the St. Louis to put up runs better than any other team in baseball next year, but there is reason to believe the pitching will also take a step forward.