The St. Louis Cardinals should trade these 2 young bats at the trade deadline

It will hurt, and it's risky, but I think this is the best way to maximize their outfield talent both on the field and in the trade market.

St. Louis Cardinals v Arizona Diamondbacks
St. Louis Cardinals v Arizona Diamondbacks / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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Potential Cardinals roster in 2024

Note: the lineup and rotation do not include any assets the Cardinals will get back in Jordan Montgomery, Jack Flaherty, Jordan Hicks, and Tyler O'Neill trades as well, and those players could also factor in here as well.


1. LF Brendan Donovan
2. 1B Paul Goldschmidt
3. RF Jordan Walker
4. 3B Nolan Arenado
5. C Willson Contreras
6. 2B Nolan Gorman
7. DH Alec Burleson (or a veteran free-agent bat)
8. SS Maysn Winn
9. CF Tommy Edman (or Cody Bellinger/Harrison Bader)


1. Aaron Nola/Blake Snell/Marcus Stroman
2. Logan Gilbert
3. Miles Mikolas
4. Sonny Gray/Michael Wacha/Alex Wood
5. Clayton Beeter

Depth: Steven Matz, Gordon Graceffo, Matthew Liberatore, Tink Hence

Let's take a peek at this lineup first. Losing Lars Nootbaar is hard, but overall, the Cardinals maintain a very productive lineup with room to improve off where it has been this year.

Brendan Donovan is coming into his own at the plate, Nolan Gorman would be even more developed, and hopefully a bit more consistent, as a hitter, Jordan Walker would be in year two of his growth, and Alec Burleson can be a nice part of your lineup, especially when he's being relied on as a bottom third of the order bat.

As the offseason plays out, the Cardinals could utilize Tommy Edman as a trade piece for more pitching, and then invest in a new center fielder, such as Cody Bellinger or Harrison Bader. They could also make Edman their primary utility guy and still bring in that new center fielder. Or the club could get a bat to rotate in at DH, but I do think that is somewhat unlikely with it appearing like Contreras may DH more next year.

Having acquired both Gilbert and Beeter, along with whatever other prospects/controllable big-league talent they get for the other guys they deal, the Cardinals have the flexibility to invest in the top end of the pitching market. With names like Aaron Nola, Blake Snell, Marcus Stroman, and Julio Urias all available, the Cardinals have no excuse not to swing big this time. Even with a big addition like that, they would still have the financial flexibility to add another veteran arm or some of those offensive upgrades I referenced.


The Cardinals' roster needs a major shakeup. Parting with Nootbaar and Carlson may be the best way to get legit talent in return while also not decimating your lineup long-term.

But it's not the only way.

I wouldn't blame the Cardinals for going in other directions if they so choose. What I would find confusing is if, by the time Spring Training rolls around next season, they haven't moved any of their young assets that continue to be stuck in log jam situations. Depth is never a bad thing, but redundancy is when you have significant weaknesses that could be addressed.

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Next. 5 trade destinations for Carlson. 5 trade destinations for Dylan Carlson. dark