Ranking the St. Louis Cardinals biggest X-Factors post-trade deadline

ST LOUIS, MO - JUNE 15: Jack Flaherty #22 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Busch Stadium on June 15, 2022 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images)
ST LOUIS, MO - JUNE 15: Jack Flaherty #22 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Busch Stadium on June 15, 2022 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images) /
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ST. LOUIS, MO – AUGUST 06: Jordan Montgomery #48 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the New York Yankees in the third inning at Busch Stadium on August 6, 2022 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS, MO – AUGUST 06: Jordan Montgomery #48 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the New York Yankees in the third inning at Busch Stadium on August 6, 2022 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images) /

No. 2: Jordan Montgomery

After a shocking, buzzer beating deadline deal that sent Yankees’ lefty Jordan Montgomery to St. Louis for center fielder Harrison Bader, Montgomery has become one of the biggest pieces to the Cardinals puzzle down the stretch.

In 22 starts this season, Montgomery has thrown 119.2 innings with a 3.53 ERA, with the majority of those games coming in the difficult American League East for the Yankees. In his first start for St. Louis, he shut down his former team and one of the best lineups in baseball, going 5 innings while allowing just 3 base runners and no runs. He was removed from the game with leg cramps but proved he has what it takes to pitch on the biggest stage.

This series in easily the most important the Cardinals have played in all season, and the club set a stadium record for attendance with 48,581 present to watch the left hander deal on Saturday. 

Now St. Louis has Montgomery, Miles Mikolas, and Adam Wainwright to rely upon come post season time, as well as Jose Quintana and perhaps Flaherty. It is actually mind boggling how much better the Cardinals rotation got in just a weeks time. Montgomery gives the Cardinals the arm they need in big playoff series, something the club should be a part of now.

Big props have to go out to John Mozeliak and his team for pulling off one of the best deadlines in recent memory, which says a lot considering they were in conversations for Soto as well.

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