3 Cardinals contracts we were happy to see end, and 2 we're still eager to see expire
By Eric Treuden
We were happy to see Dexter Fowler's contract expire.
By the time Fowler made his way to St. Louis, he had already established himself as a well-liked veteran who had some serious wheels and even developed 15-20 home run potential.
A longtime member of the Colorado Rockies, Fowler had topped 10 triples four times, a feat that is rarely seen in today's game. His next stop was on the division rival Cubs, which is where he made his only All-Star Game and developed his pop. He was also a part of the 2016 World Series-winning club.
In December of 2016, Fowler agreed to a five-year, $82.5M contract with the Cardinals, earning a massive and perhaps well-deserved payday. In 2017, he had one of the best offensive seasons of his career, hitting 18 home runs with 64 RBI in 118 games, posting a 122 OPS+ along the way.
In 2018, he made a full-time switch to right field but only made it into 90 games, being placed on the 60-day injured list with a foot injury. Even when he was healthy, he did not perform even close to the level he had in the year prior.
In 2019, he was once again healthy and hit a career-high 19 home runs with 67 RBI. His average dipped a bit from his strong 2017 season but his OPS+ sat at 100, which is still league-average.
2020 saw him once again perform poorly and perhaps begin to show his age a bit. The then-34-year-old had a hard time getting going in the COVID-shortened campaign and was beginning to seem like a burden on the Cardinals' payroll.
Sure enough, the veteran was traded to the Angels in February of 2021 with the Cardinals throwing in some cash as well. Ultimately, his Cardinals tenure ended with a whimper and the Cards had to pay a team for them to get rid of him.
Fowler only just recently retired, and we congratulate him and thank him for his services to the club, but his contract quickly became an albatross in St. Louis.