Number 2: Trading Nolan Gorman
The successes of Adolis Garcia and Randy Arozarena in the Postseason have been painful to watch for any Cardinals fan. However, John Mozeliak has been unfairly criticized for both of those moves. Randy Arozarena's off-the-field drama after live-streaming Mike Shildt's players-only celebration speech to Instagram is likely what led to his exodus from St. Louis. Without that incident, the Cardinals would have probably kept the 2020 ALCS MVP.
Criticism of Mozeliak for the Adolis Garcia trade is even more confusing, as the Cardinals weren't the only team to miss on Garcia's eventual breakout. The Texas Rangers also DFA'ed Garcia before all 29 other teams missed an opportunity to claim the 2023 ALCS MVP off waivers. Not only did Mo miss on Garcia, but so did every other team in baseball. Don't criticize the Cardinals for letting Adolis Garcia go, praise Adolis Garcia for working hard and succeeding.
Now that I've praised the front office more than most fans would like, I'll stop defending them. If John Mozeliak trades Nolan Gorman this offseason, it'll be the biggest miss of his career. Far bigger than Arozarena, Garcia, or even the Marcell Ozuna trade. Of course, there are caveats to this. If the Mariners somehow decide they'll part with George Kirby and Luis Castillo for Gorman, then sure let him go.
But at his current market value, Gorman should be untouchable. His power at second base is extremely rare and he's already shown that at the Major League level. He could be a 40+ home run hitter one day like Kyle Schwarber. Currently, it seems he's valued on the same level as Brendan Donovan or even Tommy Edman, but he should be regarded the same as Jordan Walker or Lars Nootbaar.
Yes, I did compare Gorman to Paul DeJong in a different article ranking extension candidates, but that's more in regards to DeJong's decline rather than any fault of Gorman's. If the front office parts with Nolan Gorman this offseason, they'll risk losing a threatening left-handed power bat in their lineup for years to come.