6 Cardinals players who made the Opening Day roster but won't finish on it

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Left-handed pitcher Packy Naughton

Packy Naughton, 27, is currently on the injured list with a forearm strain, but he was not long for the big league roster before the injury came up.

The left-handed swingman came up with the Reds and Angels systems before debuting with the Halos in 2021, posting a 6.35 ERA across seven appearances and 22+ innings. He struggled mightily with control and walked (14) more batters than he struck out (12).

Prior to the beginning of last season, Naughton was claimed off of waivers by the Cardinals and was assigned to Triple-A Memphis. He was up in the big leagues by the end of April and performed better than he had the year prior, but still not very good. In 26 games, he had a 4.78 ERA and 82 ERA+ across 32 innings of work. The main positive that came from his brief cameo was his dramatically improved command; he struck out 31 batters while walking only seven.

With injuries around the pitching staff, Naughton made this year's Opening Day roster almost by default. He can either start or relieve (he is arguably not suited for a starter's role long-term, though) and provided the Cardinals with a second lefty in the 'pen before he went down. Prior to the injury, he had four scoreless outings under his belt, but he is a pitcher on the bottom of the organizational totem pole and will either finish the year in the minor leagues or on another team.