You probably won't find a bigger fan of Tyler O'Neill than me. But it pains me to say that he could end up being the outfielder the Cardinals part with by August 1st.
After finishing top-10 in MVP voting in 2021 and taking the league by storm with his powerful bat and elite defense, injuries saw O'Neill take a major step back at the plate and he was nowhere near the same player that he was the year prior. While I am a part of the crew that believes O'Neill will bounce back in a big way in 2023, should he not be one of the best Cardinal outfielders this season, he likely will be shipped somewhere else.
Why would I think that? First, the Cardinals have an abundance of options for their outfield, including the likes of Lars Nootbaar, Jordan Walker, Dylan Carlson, Alec Burleson, Moises Gomez, and even other options in the minors who could factor in here really soon. Second, O'Neill is set to be a free agent after 2024, meaning long-term, it makes sense to commit to their other outfielders.
If O'Neill looks like his 2021 self, or even something close to it, I doubt the Cardinals would move on from him. That kind of bat in the middle of your order makes you elite, and they'd rather risk him walking after 2024 than give up that level of a player.
But should O'Neill bounce back but not separate himself from the other Cardinal outfielders, he could be one piece of the package to acquire a front-line starter come July.