3 pending free agents the St. Louis Cardinals should avoid

The desperate need for pitching is going to be the mindset for the Cardinals' front office this winter, but which free agents should they steer away from?
Los Angeles Angels v St. Louis Cardinals
Los Angeles Angels v St. Louis Cardinals / Dilip Vishwanat/GettyImages
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2. Texas Rangers left hander Andrew Heaney

Heaney will not get the most attention when it comes to free-agent starters, but some teams might see him as a veteran arm who can pitch at the bottom of the rotation and give his team quality innings.

There is no guarantee that Heaney will be a free agent as he has a player option, which means he has the option to apply an extra year to his contract, or deny the option and become an unrestricted free agent. So assuming that Heaney will be a free agent this winter, I think the Cardinals should tread lightly.

2023 has been an up-and-down year for Heaney, going 9-6 with a 4.16 ERA and a 105 ERA+ with Texas. He's like Nola in that he has high strikeout numbers in his career ( career 9.6 K/9) but his problem has been staying on the field.

Six times since Spring Training in 2018 he has been on the injured list with arm troubles. He has stayed healthy this season though, and if he stays healthy this will only be his 3rd season where he's recorded at least 30 starts. I think it would be too big a risk even if it was a shorter deal, if the Cardinals want to go after a lower-risk, higher-reward lefty, there is Julio Urias and ex-Cardinal Jordan Montgomery that the Cardinals could easily target.