4 potential trade destinations for Jack Flaherty

These four clubs could be great trade destinations for Jack Flaherty

St. Louis Cardinals v Chicago Cubs
St. Louis Cardinals v Chicago Cubs / Michael Reaves/GettyImages
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Unless the Cardinals go on a really hot streak, dealing away their impending free agents makes perfect sense. Where could the enigmatic Flaherty end up?

Securely in last place and well under .500 as we approach the All-Star break, the St. Louis Cardinals have about three weeks to figure out what exactly they plan to do about not only the 2023 season but also future campaigns. Will they catch fire, soar back to a break-even record, and then push for a playoff spot? Or will they continue their lackluster year and makes moves to reset for 2024 and beyond?

Let's assume another 17-game winning streak like in 2021 is not in the cards (pun very much intended) and evaluate where they might deal one of their starting pitchers, Jack Flaherty. He sports a decent 4.27 ERA through his first 17 starts this season, but if we start with that magical 2021 campaign, Flaherty has a 3.87 ERA over 207 innings, which is a 106 ERA+, slightly better than average. He also has 207 strikeouts, 96 walks, and 190 hits allowed during that stretch.

While Flaherty probably will never again have a run like his otherworldly second half of the 2019 season, he can be an effective starter, one who can take the ball every 5-6 days and keep his team in the game. Basically, he's like so many other Cardinals pitchers, a mid-rotation starter who often needs his offense to pick him up.

How many teams could use a #3 starter like Flaherty? Plenty actually. With so many hurlers getting hurt or being ineffective, roughly average production has definite value. That's how someone like Steven Matz can get a $44M contract, but let's not dig into that disaster here. Instead, let's look for possible new homes for Flaherty.