John Mozeliak's masterful 2023 moves are going just as planned for the Cardinals

Between the 2023 trade deadline and this past offseason, John Mozeliak has transformed the starting rotation and prospect group in the system.
St. Louis Cardinals v Miami Marlins
St. Louis Cardinals v Miami Marlins / Rich Storry/GettyImages
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Andrew Kittredge

When the Cardinals traded a young, unproven outfielder to the Tampa Bay Rays, Cardinal fans had immediate flashbacks to Randy Arozarena. In exchange for Richie Palacios, John Mozeliak brought over former All-Star reliever Andrew Kittredge.

Kittredge, 34, missed a lot of time in 2022 and 2023 due to Tommy John surgery, but he was an All-Star in 2021. He figured to slot into the back of the bullpen to provide some help for Ryan Helsley and JoJo Romero. Kittredge, along with Keynan Middleton and Giovanny Gallegos, would create a formidable collection of veterans at the back end of the 'pen.

He has pitched admirably for the Cardinals since his acquisition. Kittredge's 11 innings pitched have been remarkable; he has 12 strikeouts, a WHIP of 1.000, an ERA of 2.64, and his 1.76 FIP is sterling. No matter which stat you pull for the veteran reliever, his brilliance is evident.

After a rocky bullpen showing in 2023, a remake was necessary. Jordan Hicks was a free agent after being traded away, Giovanny Gallegos and Andre Pallante were roughed up in 2023, and Ryan Helsley had injury concerns attached to his name. Kittredge's presence and results so far have given Oli Marmol assurance from his relievers.

The season is still young, but with Andrew Kittredge being a veteran and seeing plenty in his career already, it's likely that he continues this great stretch of pitching. He has been mostly used late in games. His 10 holds are tied for the most in baseball with fellow reliever Cardinal JoJo Romero. The two, along with Ryan Helsley, have formed a formidable trio in late in games.