Making cases for the Cardinals to buy, sell, or float in the middle at the deadline

The Cardinals are in a tough spot as the trade deadline looms. They can make a push for the playoffs, reset the farm system, or do a soft buy.
St. Louis Cardinals v Houston Astros
St. Louis Cardinals v Houston Astros / Logan Riely/GettyImages
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The case to be buyers

Everyone loves winning!

That's the crux of it. If the St. Louis Cardinals are true buyers at this deadline, they can land some serious stars. Jesus Luzardo (2.5 years of team control), Luis Robert Jr. (3.5 years of team control), and Garrett Crochet (2.5 years of team control) have all been listed as players who are extremely likely to be traded by their respective teams this year. Each of those guys would be a difference-maker with the Cardinals.

If the Cardinals were to be buyers and successfully land one of these studs, the outlook of the roster, both now and later, becomes much brighter. Even if they don't want to challenge major organizations for these stars, there are still plenty of secondary players who could make a difference. Jordan Montgomery, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Erick Fedde would all be beneficial to the team.

The Cardinals are easily within striking distance of a playoff spot, especially when looking at the Wild Card. The Chicago Cubs, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds, and Arizona Diamondbacks are all muddled within 2 games of each other in the standings. A couple of moves at the deadline would easily set the Cardinals ahead of the others.

If the Brewers falter, which they have been lately, the Cardinals could even lock up home-field advantage in the first round via a division crown.

Being sellers for the second year in a row will deflate an already suppressed fanbase. Attendance has fallen on average by nearly 3,000 people per game. A second consecutive year of waving the white flag in July would surely extinguish all hope that's left. Being buyers would send a message to the fans that this organization sees 2023 as a blip rather than the start of a trend.