#6 - Bryce Miller or Bryan Woo (Seattle Mariners)
When the Cardinals are linked to the Mariners as trade partners, the conversation often centers on their young star Logan Gilbert. I tend to think the price for Gilbert would be too much for the Cardinals to stomach, but I wonder if either side may come to an agreement on a deal for one of Bryce Miller or Bryan Woo.
Miller and Woo both made their MLB debuts in 2023 and have many years of club control ahead of them. Their ceilings are yet to be fully determined, but becoming borderline front-line guys over the next few years feels like fair expectations. The Mariners will not part with either of them for a cheap package, but I do think they would be more available than Gilbert is.
It may take someone like Brendan Donovan to pull off the trade, but I wonder if Thomas Saggese could be the perfect centerpiece here. Saggese, acquired at the trade deadline from the Texas Rangers, won Double-A Most Valuable Player in 2023 and will surely rank highly on top-100 prospect lists going into 2024. He's got a very projectable bat with the versatility to play all over the diamond, something that any team in baseball would be interested in.
I don't know if Seattle would entertain something like this, but if I'm the Cardinals front office, my interest in Miller or Woo ends when they ask for any of Gorman, Donovan, or Nootbaar. The Cardinals need those guys to win now, and although I really like the ceilings of Miller or Woo, I don't think they are more than middle or back end of the rotation starters for 2024.
If the options in free agency or the trade market were thinner, my stance may change, but I think there are better values out there for 2024 that make more sense for St. Louis.