4 big questions facing the Cardinals after 2 months of play

After two months of the 2024 season, the Cardinals have some big questions they have yet to answer.
St. Louis Cardinals v Atlanta Braves
St. Louis Cardinals v Atlanta Braves / Brett Davis/GettyImages
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The St. Louis Cardinals have been treading water this season. While the injury bug hasn't gotten them as much as other teams (the Miami Marlins lost their entire starting rotation at one point), they have faced their fair share of players out for extended periods of time. After playing the mighty Philadelphia Phillies, the Cardinals sit at 28-29, a much better place than last year.

The starting rotation has been buoyed by strong performances from Sonny Gray, Lance Lynn, and Kyle Gibson. The offense has been carried primarily by the team's catchers, Willson Contreras when healthy and Ivan Herrera, and Masyn Winn. Thanks to strong performances from JoJo Romero, Andrew Kittredge, and Ryan Helsley, the bullpen has been stout. Even the team's defense this year is much improved.

Plenty of questions we held during the offseason have been answered; John Mozeliak found his 3 starters, the bullpen has been shored up for the most part, and we have a better idea of what Masyn Winn can be given full reign. The bulk of the difficult decisions that the team left Spring Training with have been answered.

There are still ample questions that need to be answered about this team at the 1/3 mark of the season. Here are 4 of them.

Who gets an extension?

In the offseason, extension conversations were prevalent. Would the Cardinals offer Paul Goldschmidt a 2-year contract to close his great (Hall of Fame?) career with the Birds on the Bat? Would a young player like Nolan Gorman, Jordan Walker, or Brendan Donovan receive a multi-year deal to buy out their arbitration years?

Tommy Edman was the recipient this past offseason, but the question remains. The names included have changed. Jordan Walker is mired in a power outage in the minors, Nolan Gorman has yet to show a consistent ability to lay off high fastballs and breaking balls down, Brendan Donovan has taken a significant step back, and Paul Goldschmidt is a shell of his former self.

These four players are likely playing themselves out of a contract extension, but some new faces have emerged as potential candidates: Masyn Winn, Ivan Herrera, and Ryan Helsley. Each of these 3 are having stellar seasons, and 2 even stand to possibly attend the All-Star Game.

Masyn Winn had an 18-game hitting streak, and he's hitting above .300 as a rookie. Ivan Herrera has done nothing but mash since filling in for the injured Willson Contreras. Ryan Helsley is at the top of the leaderboard in saves on the season. Only Helsley is arbitration eligible -- next offseason is his last before free agency -- so it may be a bit premature to offer extensions to the shortstop and catcher of the future.

Any one of these three players is worthy of a contract extension, and it wouldn't be surprising if we start hearing whispers of conversations between the team and the players.