Ranking the ceilings of the St. Louis Cardinals' top pitching prospects

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#4 - Max Rajcic

Ranking on Cardinals' top prospect lists:
Baseball America: #10
MLB.com: #17
Birds on the Black: #19
Data Driven: NR (their list was only the top 12)

Max Rajcic is probably a new name to many people reading this, but he's begun his professional career on an absolute tear for Single-A Palm Beach. In 11 games, Rajcic is 6-2 with a 1.59 ERA and 60 SO over 56.2 innings of work.

Baseball America just did this midseason update, launching Rajcic from the 20s of the Cardinals' team rankings all the way up to #10. Rajcic was a top recruit when he signed with UCLA in 2020 but was not the player people thought he'd be at UCLA and fell all the way to the 6th round in 2023. The Cardinals signed him with a well above-draft slot bonus in order to get him to come out of UCLA.

Rajcic's fastball sits in the low 90s, but his true "out" pitches are his curveball and changeup. He throws strikes but does have that sneaky strikeout stuff due to his offspeed arsenal.

There is still room to add velocity to his game, and if he does, he can profile very nicely at the big-league level. Rajcic doesn't really have a path toward being a front-line starter in this league, but as I've watched him pitch and dove into him as a prospect, I do think he has upside as a #3ish starter if he continues to impress like he has.