5 Cardinals who could still be traded in the offseason

Now that the trade deadline has come and gone, who are some players that could still be dealt this coming offseason?

Chicago Cubs v St. Louis Cardinals
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C Andrew Knizner

This shouldn't be a controversy. I hate that it could be. Before this 2023 season, Andrew Knizner's highest WRC+ season was a 79 in both his premier season of '19 and 2022. He filled in the blanks with seasons of 42 wRC+ and 50 wRC+ in 2020 and 2021 respectively. This even included playing the majority of starts in 2022 at catcher due to Molina's extended absence. To put it politely, he wasn't very good. That has led to a shift in mindset this past off-season and a tremendous boost in performance to boot.

Bernie Miklasz did a great job laying some of that out here if you want a deeper dive. All offensive numbers are up. He's smacking a homerun once every 16 at-bats for a current career high in HRs (9), has a career-high in RBIs at the moment (27), and has more than doubled his ISO numbers from years past to a career-high ( and ninth in the league for catchers) at .226. These are all great signs for the Cardinals to see out of one of their catchers post-Molina era. After all, his offense is what carried Knizner to the Majors, not his defense.

The problem is, Knizner is 28 and when he does hit free agency in 2026 he will be pushing 31 years old. The Cardinals also have a young prospect in Ivan Herrea who has nothing left to prove at Memphis and looked ready for his turn in the big leagues during his time up earlier in July. Oh, and there's also the fact that the Cardinals committed $87.5 million dollars and five years to free agent Wilson Contreras this past offseason. There were even lengthy times this year when the Cardinals held three catchers on the active roster for extended periods of time (which was extremely confusing.)

So why hold on to Knizner when his trade value will be no higher? There are plenty of teams in baseball that would be interested in adding a catcher like him to their team that worked under the Molina school of preparation and has now shown his upside with his offense. I understand that Mikolas enjoys throwing to him or that he seems to be the un-anointed "Team Capitan". But that's enough for me to think the Cardinals would look to move him this upcoming offseason if they can find a fit and fill a need. Right now, even with Willson Contreras having a somewhat down year, I don't think the Cardinals need to worry about the catcher position.