Checking in on the Cardinals prospects from the 2023 trade deadline

The St. Louis Cardinals acquired eight prospects at the 2023 trade deadline. Here's how they're doing in 2024.
Boston Red Sox v St. Louis Cardinals
Boston Red Sox v St. Louis Cardinals / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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Jordan Hicks trade

Sem Robberse: A 22-year-old right-hander from the Netherlands, Sem Robberse has pitched excellently in his second go-around with Memphis after being acquired from the Toronto Blue Jays, and many Cardinals fans have called for his promotion to replace the injured Steven Matz in the rotation.

Robberse has transformed himself in 2024 after a pedestrian 2023 by replacing his four-seam fastball with a cutter and a slider. He has a 2.81 ERA across seven starts in Triple-A this season, and opponents are batting only .205 against him. He has also drastically decreased the frequency of free passes surrendered, walking only 2.38 batters per nine innings after reaching a 6.11 mark last season. Robberse looks to be on the doorstep to the major leagues and could eventually fit in the Cardinals' rotation.

Adam Kloffenstein: Adam Kloffenstein had a 3.00 ERA in Memphis as he took on Triple-A for the first time in 2023, but the right-hander's FIP of 5.78 and an unsustainable strand rate of over 90% pointed to regression. Sure enough, Kloffenstein has struggled in 2024, with an ERA of 5.31 despite a BABIP of only .229.

Kloffenstein possesses reverse splits, holding left-handed batters to a .159 average, but right-handers are hitting .286. The 23-year-old has a chance to debut with the Cardinals as a situational starter in 2024, but it's hard to expect much considering his problems in Memphis. He may be best used out of the bullpen in the way the Cardinals used Andre Pallante, as a right-hander who retires lefties.

A few of the Cardinals' prospects from the 2023 trade deadline are sources of excitement, such as Robberse and Prieto. Others, like Roby, haven't lived up to their billing to this point. Mozeliak's reign will only continue for one more year at a maximum, so if these players are the first wave of a rebuild, it will soon be on the next regime to fix what has gone wrong in St. Louis.