7 players who could contend for the Cardinals' final bench spot in 2024

With the departure of Richie Palacios, someone else gets to try and make St. Louis's roster out of Spring Training.
Wichita Wind Surge v Frisco RoughRiders
Wichita Wind Surge v Frisco RoughRiders / Ben Ludeman/Texas Rangers/GettyImages
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Jared Young

The Cardinals claimed Jared Young off waivers from the Chicago Cubs on November 6, 2023. Young turned twenty-eight in July, and he has only logged sixty-nine plate appearances in the majors. He has posted a .269/.342/.437 slash line in his minor league career.

For what Luken Baker lacks in positional versatility, Young more than makes up for it. He has logged time at multiple positions including left field, first base, and second base. He has primarily played first base, but in a pinch, Young can spell most anyone excluding shortstop and center field. His inclusion would be a low-risk, low-reward move that allows the Cardinals to maintain options on other prospects. He is on the 40-man roster.

Buddy Kennedy

Buddy Kennedy was acquired by the Cardinals through waivers from the Oakland Athletics. His acquisition deepened the team's middle infield options in the farm system. Kennedy, twenty-five, has spent time with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Oakland Athletics organizations during his minor league career. He can play both second base and third base.

In 417 Triple-A plate appearances for the Diamondbacks' affiliate, Kennedy slashed .318/.444/.481. He walked more times than he struck out, and he finished the season with a 133 wRC+. The right-hander didn't perform as well in the majors, but the potential is clearly there. He is on the 40-man roster, so roster manipulation isn't necessary should he open camp with the major league squad. It is likely Buddy Kennedy claims the final spot in my opinion.