Cardinals Rumors: Here are five names the club may be targeting right now
By Josh Jacobs
Target #2 - Pablo Lopez
Pablo Lopez feels like the new Frankie Montas for St. Louis. His name is constantly floated out there as a potential trade candidate, and the pieces make a lot of sense for a deal to get done with the Marlins.
In a career-high 180 innings in 2022, Lopez went 10-10 with a 3.75 ERA and 8.7 K/9, pitching like an All-Star in the first half but then falling off during the second half of the season. Lopez likely wouldn't be the "ace" that fans really want for this rotation, but he would represent a cost-controlled starter who could serve as a number two starter on a really good team.
The Marlins are looking for offensive upgrades, specifically in the outfield. This has led names like Tyler O'Neill or Dylan Carlson to be linked to Miami, and I would not be surprised if either ended up being in a package for Lopez.
Kind of like the Reynolds trade though, I'm not sure trading O'Neill or Carlson in a package for Lopez is a great idea right now. If they trade O'Neill and he returns to his MVP-like production, or even just 70% of that, it will have been a big mistake. If Carlson rebounds from his injuries and continues his development into a really good center fielder, that will also turn out poorly for the Cardinals.
The worst thing the Cardinals could do in their quest for pitching is panic. If they do not have a great deal available to them right now, they can afford to wait till the deadline for pitching. Although they do not have that ace, they do have a quality group of five starters and some depth pieces that can get them by for a few months while St. Louis figured out which of their young positions they want to keep and which could go.