One Trade, One Signing: Key Moves for the St. Louis Cardinals

Exploring Offseason Tactics for St. Louis Cardinals' Success.

by Nouman Rasool
One Trade, One Signing: Key Moves for the St. Louis Cardinals
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The St. Louis Cardinals, actively shaping their roster for a competitive edge in the 2024 season, have already made significant strides with the acquisition of Sonny Gray. However, to truly position themselves as contenders, the team must focus on strategic upgrades.

Two pivotal moves stand out: a smart trade and a calculated free-agent signing. The 2023 season spotlighted a critical area of improvement for the Cardinals: their bullpen. With an ERA of 4.47 and a concerning 28 blown saves, the team's ability to maintain leads was frequently compromised.

The Cardinals have already bolstered their starting rotation with the likes of Lance Lynn, Kyle Gibson, and Gray. This depth offers the flexibility to consider trading Steven Matz, who could be an attractive piece for teams in a rebuilding phase.

Enter the Chicago White Sox. Amid a long-term overhaul, the White Sox possess the financial capacity to absorb the remaining $24 million on Matz's contract. They also have the bullpen talent that aligns with the Cardinals' needs.

While left-hander Garrett Crochet remains an ideal target, the Cardinals might find more realistic options in right-hander Gregory Santos or even considering transitioning starter Michael Kopech to a bullpen role, especially given his history of injuries.

Montgomery's Potential Return

However, the Cardinals' strategy shouldn't be limited to trades. Re-signing Jordan Montgomery, who was exceptional for the Cardinals in 2023 before his mid-season trade to the Texas Rangers, could be a game-changer.

Montgomery, fresh from a World Series triumph with the Rangers, is now a free agent. His return would significantly bolster a rotation already featuring Gray and Miles Mikolas, potentially making it one of the strongest in the NL Central.

Montgomery's 2023 performance was impressive: over 188.2 innings, he recorded a 10-11 record, a commendable 3.20 ERA, a 1.193 WHIP, and 166 strikeouts. His projected market value suggests a five-year deal, potentially reaching $120 million.

For the Cardinals, these moves are about more than just talent acquisition. They reflect a calculated approach to building a well-rounded team capable of not just competing but dominating in their division. With strategic trades and signings like these, the Cardinals are positioning themselves as serious contenders for the 2024 season.

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