Dylan Carlson could still be traded this offseason.
Dylan Carlson has been toyed with by management and coaches. He was once a top-15 prospect in all of baseball, and he showed flashes of being a true five-tool player in 2021. Since then, Carlson's playing time and position have changed at least a half dozen times.
Carlson is still only twenty-five, and he has three years of team control remaining. With the ascension of Tommy Edman in center, the hype around Jordan Walker and Lars Nootbaar, and the rapid rise of Victor Scott II, Carlson's role on the team becomes more uncertain with every passing week.
By himself, Dylan Carlson could bring back a player like Shane Bieber or Alek Manoah. When packaged with other players or prospects, Carlson's trade value skyrockets. He truly could headline a package, and teams would be quite interested in a young switch-hitting outfielder who can capably play center field. Teams such as the San Diego Padres, Detroit Tigers, and Kansas City Royals could all use a center fielder especially someone as young, cheap, and controllable as Dylan is.
Carlson is a career-average hitter with a 99 OPS+, but his defense grades out as slightly above average. He most recently agreed to a one-year, $2.35 million deal through arbitration, so he is still cheap and controllable.
It would be tough to see Dylan Carlson depart, but in the right package, a trade of the former top prospect before Opening Day would make sense for the Cardinals.