15 free agent and trade near-misses that would've changed Cardinals history

Miami Marlins v St Louis Cardinals
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Jason Heyward, 2015

The Cardinals dodged two major bullets in the 2015 offseason. They were first outbid by the Red Sox for Price, but then they were also turned down by their free agent outfielder Jason Heyward, who took less money to sign with the Chicago Cubs that offseason.

To anyone who says the Cardinals don't make big offers, this offseason alone they made $200 million contract offers to both Price and Heyward. Heyward instead chose to sign with the Cubs, saying they were a younger team who were more ready to compete long-term than the Cardinals.

Heyward played a key role during the 2016 World Series, helping motivate the team to come back and win Game 7 against the Cleveland Indians. From 2016-2022 though, he slashed just .245/.323/.377 with 62 HR and 289 RBI, eventually being released by the Cubs after the 2022 season.

For as much as it hurt in the moment to see Heyward go to their rival, Cardinals fans are pretty excited that he left their money on the table.