3 ways to fix the Cardinals struggling offense as right now

The St. Louis Cardinals have all of the pieces to be a top offense, but their lineup is sputtering right now. Here are three ways they can fix that right now.
St. Louis Cardinals v Oakland Athletics
St. Louis Cardinals v Oakland Athletics / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
1 of 3

The St. Louis Cardinals are 9-10 entering their weekend series against the Milwaukee Brewers, and oddly enough, it's been their pitching and defense that has carried them to wins so far. Their OPS ranks 24th in all of baseball, with significant bats like Paul Goldschmidt, Jordan Walker, and Nolan Gorman not producing to begin the year.

I believe the Cardinals have all of the pieces necessary to have a top offense in baseball and the fact that they are almost .500 when the strength of their team has not been living up to its billing. Even so, the team needs its offense to get on track as soon as possible, and it may be worth making some significant changes to make it happen.

Here are three changes I believe could spark the offense right now while the big bats work on getting things right.

Fix #1 - Move Lars Nootbaar to center field

I understand the Cardinals have been resistant to the idea of moving Lars Nootbaar to center field, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

Victor Scott II and Michael Siani are both hitting below .100 right now. If the top hitters in the Cardinals lineup were producing like they should right now, that really wouldn't matter all that much. But while things are the way they are, the Cardinals may need to sacrifice some defense to get more runs on the board.

The Cardinals' defense has taken major steps forward this year, and I understand why people don't want to mess with that. It's also fair to be worried that Nootbaar's health could be at risk if he's flying around center field every day. Here's why I think it's worth the risk:

1. Letting Nootbaar play center field for the time being is not a long-term commitment. Scott and Siani in center field are not the sole reasons the team's defense has gotten a lot better. Winn playing shortstop every day, Nolan Arenado getting back to himself defensively, the continued strides from Nolan Gorman at second base, and Jordan Walker's improvements in right field are a big part of the defense taking a step forward. I don't think Nootbaar in center field would destabilize that, and if it somehow did, there's nothing stopping them from switching back immediately.

2. Nootbaar has been prone to those weird injuries, and helping him avoid them is certainly important. But if he can't find a way to stay healthy for the next month while they wait for Carlson or Edman to return, that's a bigger issue in itself.

Moving Nootbaar to center field also allows the Cardinals to fit another significant bat into their lineup each day, something I'll address next.