The Cardinals should follow the 2022 Red Sox example at the trade deadline

While the Cardinals need to hit the reset button, they shouldn't engage in a full teardown. Instead, they should take a page out of the 2022 Red Sox book.
St. Louis Cardinals v Detroit Tigers
St. Louis Cardinals v Detroit Tigers / Mark Cunningham/GettyImages

Back in 2022, the Red Sox were a game over .500 at the trade deadline and sold off a few pieces. They traded both Christian Vazquez and Jake Diekman but added Eric Hosmer, Reese McGuire, and former Cardinal Tommy Pham. In essence, they were buyers and sellers.

They were under .500 at the time of these trades, much like the Cardinals are now. And with the Cardinals' current record, it appears as though a rebuild of sorts is on the horizon. It may be what's best for the club.

But while it's time for changes, I don't think it's a good idea to do a total and complete rebuild and trade away everybody. I think they should at least hold onto pieces such as Sonny Gray and Willson Contreras.

Instead, what if the Cardinals do what the Red Sox did in 2022 and act as both buyers and sellers?

Cardinals should follow 2022 Red Sox example at deadline

It may be a bit early to talk about the trade deadline, but I think it's clear at this point that the Cardinals are in all likelihood not going anywhere.

So, what would buying and selling look like for St. Louis? It might actually be simpler than you think.

The Red Sox made multiple trades, and the Cardinals might need to do the same. But there is a way they can do both.

Fans aren't going to like hearing this, but Nolan Arenado is somebody who could be a trade candidate. Is it an ideal situation to have to trade a franchise cornerstone? No, but Arenado is aging and at this point, it doesn't really make much sense to build around him and Paul Goldschmidt, who is also aging.

The future of this team revolves around guys like Masyn Winn, Jordan Walker, Lars Nootbaar, Brendan Donovan, Nolan Gorman, and Tommy Edman. These are the pieces the Cardinals should build around and supplement.

Arenado is somebody who could get the Cardinals some good pieces in return, and not just prospects, but Major League-ready players. There's one team in particular that could help with that, and that team is the Yankees.

Because Arenado has three years of team control left after this season, he becomes an attractive trade piece, and the Yankees have plenty of young players they could send the Cardinals' way. I'm talking guys like Jasson Dominguez and Oswald Cabrera. The Yankees could also throw in DJ LeMahieu, who while not as good as Arenado, still can help the team and add depth.

Throw in Ryan Helsley and you might be able to get all four of them. In this way, we could see the Cardinals buy and sell by just making one trade. Derrick Goold listed Helsley as a trade possibility if the Cardinals strictly sell.

This would be a nice way for the Cardinals to hit the reset button but also still try to remain relevant. We might also see them dangle pieces like Kyle Gibson and Lance Lynn, who are on one-year deals and might draw some interest if they keep pitching well.

This is how the Cardinals should do their so-called "rebuild." Getting rid of Helsley and Arenado would obviously be punting on 2024 and shifting the focus to 2025 and beyond.

Some people will see both buying and selling as the Cardinals remaining stuck in the middle, which is where they are now. That is a fair point, but the buying moves, or getting players from the Yankees in return would be to get some fresh blood in the clubhouse and give the Cardinals a fresh start.

We'll see how things shake out, but this is something the Cardinals should look at doing if they decide to change things. The young players are who they should build around, not Goldschmidt and Arenado.