The 20 most important St. Louis Cardinals in 2023: #17 Giovanny Gallegos
Each day leading up to Opening Day, our Redbird Rants team will be counting down the 20 most important St. Louis Cardinals for the 2023 season. Here are the players we have covered thus far.
Today, we end our run of relievers with our #17 most important player for the Cardinals in 2023, Giovanny Gallegos.
Gallegos, 31, was acquired by the Cardinals from the New York Yankees in the Luke Voit trade back in 2018 and has become one of the most consistent, high-end relievers in all of baseball over the last five seasons. Since 2019, Gallegos is 6th among all relievers in baseball in WAR, ahead of names like Emmanuel Clase, Devin Williams, and many of the top relievers in today's game.
Last season, Oli Marmol moved away from the traditional "closer" role in the bullpen, choosing to instead deploy guys like Ryan Helsley and Gallegos into the game when they are needed the most. Gallegos thrived in that role, posting a 3.05 ERA in 59 innings pitched, earning 14 saves and 12 holds throughout the season.
Gallegos earned himself a two-year extension with an option for a third year with St. Louis back in October, showing just how important the Cardinals believe he is to their bullpen and what kind of value he could provide them during the season. While Helsley gets most of the headlines for the Cardinals, let's look at how important Gallegos will be to the club in 2023.