Cardinals receive: RHP Dylan Cease
White Sox receive: UTL Brendan Donovan, RHP Gordon Graceffo, RHP Michael McGreevy, and SS Jonathan Mejia
This may be an unpopular take, but I also would hang up the phone if the White Sox asked for Brendan Donovan. He's a different player than Nolan Gorman, but I think is still equally valuable long-term.
Donovan has an excellent bat already, boasting elite on-base skills, and is continuing to develop power from the left side. Whether he's batting at the top or bottom of the Cardinals' order, he provides a major impact and is someone they'll need in October.
Having Gorman, Donovan, and Nootbaar is crucial to bringing balance to the Cardinals' order. Over the last five or six years, they've been very right-handed heavy, which can make matching up with the best right-handed pitchers in baseball difficult.
Donovan's ability to slot in at six different positions also helps out a ton when it comes to roster construction. He's not a great defender at any position, but he's at least average or above average, which is rare to find from a bat as good as his. All of those reasons and his team control could make him very appealing to the White Sox.
Graceffo and McGreevy make appearances here again, providing the White Sox with two arms in this deal, with Graceffo being the real prize of the two. Jonathan Mejia is another raw prospect who the White Sox can take a chance on long-term.
Cease has the strikeout stuff the Cardinals want and eats innings in the process. It's worth risking his poor 2023 performance and expecting a bounce back, but I don't think it's worth Brendan Donovan. Maybe if it was a straight swap, but once again, I'd much rather turn the conversation to top prospects instead.
What do you think of a potential Dylan Cease trade? Is he a target of yours? What would you give up to get him? Let me know on Twitter (@joshjacoMLB).