St. Louis Cardinals: Assembling a trade package for Shane Bieber

May 9, 2023; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Guardians starting pitcher Shane Bieber (57) delivers a
May 9, 2023; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Guardians starting pitcher Shane Bieber (57) delivers a / David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Not so long ago, Shane Bieber felt like a player who would spend his entire big league career as a member of the Cleveland Guardians. After all, all he's done since debuting back in 2018 is win an AL Cy Young Award, win an ERA crown, and make two All-Star Game appearances.

Now, things are different. So different, in fact, that some around the league are beginning to speculate that Bieber is good as gone at the 2023 trade deadline. A team like the St. Louis Cardinals, who are just too good to be playing the way they have been, should strike.

Assembling a trade package for the St. Louis Cardinals to acquire Shane Bieber.

Make no mistake about it, Bieber is a top-of-the-rotation talent and would immediately give the Cardinals a brand new ace atop their starting five. To start the current campaign, he is 4-3 through 12 starts with a 3.72 ERA, 4.14 FIP, and 111 ERA+; all numbers that are a bit "low" for him, but still are above-average figures.

He will not come cheap, but this should be a price that ownership will happily pay to land a starter with Cy Young stuff and some additional team control beyond the current season.

Fortunately for the Cardinals, their organization is filled with talent that would surely grab the attention of the Guardians' front office. Brendan Donovan, Tommy Edman, Tink Hence, Masyn Winn, Juan Yepez, and Alec Burleson are just a few of the names that could be of interest to Cleveland.

Here's the best deal the Cardinals could approach the Guardians with that A.) won't empty the farm and B.) would result in an accepted offer.


  • RHP Shane Bieber


  • UTIL Brendan Donovan
  • OF Tyler O'Neill
  • LHP Matthew Liberatore

The old "you have to give up talent to get talent" line has never been more relevant for the Cardinals. The loss of this trio would undoubtedly be hard to swallow for many, but there's a method to the madness here.

In Donovan, the Guardians would be landing a utility man with a bat that can play at virtually any position on the diamond. The club has José Ramírez at third base but pretty much every other spot is up for grabs. It'd have to be either Tommy Edman or Donovan here but we're going to keep Edman where he's at thanks to his long track record for the Cardinals.

In O'Neill, the Cardinals are able to shed some dead weight while the Guardians are addressing an obvious roster hole. He comes with his fair share of in-season controversies, but make no mistake about it, he is still a smooth fielding, power-hitting outfielder that the Guardians could so desperately use. His loss could easily be masked by the presence of Dylan Carlson, Alec Burleson, Juan Yepez, and Edman.


Losing Liberatore is tough, but it's hard to see the Cards departing with any pitching talent above him on the organizational depth chart. The southpaw feels like the top pitcher the Cardinals could even remotely feel comfortable with moving on from. At the same time, he would give Cleveland an MLB-ready arm that could immediately "replace" someone like Bieber in their starting rotation.

3 flourish 2 not. 3 Cardinals prospects doing well and 2 who aren't. dark. Next