Deep dive into Steamer projections: What to expect from Cardinals pitchers in 2024

Steamer publishes its projections each season on Fangraphs. The St. Louis Cardinals' pitching projections are better than last year's, but they still aren't strong.

Cincinnati Reds v St. Louis Cardinals
Cincinnati Reds v St. Louis Cardinals / Joe Puetz/GettyImages
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Relievers

The top arms in relief for the Cardinals are projected to be Ryan Helsley, JoJo Romero, Zack Thompson, Giovanny Gallegos, and Andre Pallante. Helsely is leading the pack with an fWAR projection of 1.0, and the remaining players follow in order.

Helsley is tied for the sixth-highest fWAR total among all relievers, trailing only Mason Miller of Oakland, Jhoan Duran of Minnesota, Edwin Diaz of New York, Jose Alvarado of Philadelphia, and Pete Fairbanks of Tampa Bay. Ryan Helsley has been one of the best closers these past three years despite facing some injuries last year, and he figures to be the team's closer in 2024.

The team's newest additions, Nick Robertson (Tyler O'Neill trade) and Ryan Fernandez (Rule 5 Draft), are projected to accumulate only 0.4 fWAR. Robertson is projected to have a low groundball percentage and pitch fifty-six innings. Ryan Fernandez will likely start the season in the minors, but he could make the Major League roster out of the gate. Neither of these new acquisitions are high-strikeout pitchers, but they both do a fine job at limiting walks.

JoJo Romero had a breakout year last year in the bullpen, and he is projected to see a glut of innings most probably in high-leverage situations. Zack Thompson is more than likely going to be a swingman out of the bullpen. These two pitchers should complement Helsley comfortably. Giovanny Gallegos is projected to rebound nicely from last year (4.42 ERA, 9.7 K/9in 2023). Steamer projects him to have a 3.98 ERA and 9.41 K/9 ratio.

While the Cardinals' bullpen won't be the best part of the team, it has a decent amount of depth with players such as Zack Thompson, Giovanny Gallegos, and Andre Pallante. One player to keep an eye on is Adam Kloffenstein, the right-handed pitcher acquired from Toronto. He has high strikeout potential, and despite struggling in his first taste of AAA baseball, he does a great job at limiting home runs. Steamer expects him to pitch only six innings next year, but if he shows out in Memphis, he could see an early promotion to the major league bullpen.

The Cardinals' bullpen won't blow anyone away, but it has decent depth and a closer at the back end who is a top-8 reliever in all of baseball.

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