Frankie Montas has been the title most connected to the Cardinals of their pitching search, but St. Louis has additionally been exploring different rotation choices. The Cards and Astros have mentioned the potential for a commerce involving the veteran righty Jake Odorizzi, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reviews. In addition, such names as Noah Syndergaard and Nathan Eovaldi have been “not less than mentioned internally” by the Cardinals’ entrance workplace as doable targets.
Odorizzi has been on the Cards’ radar for a while, because the membership thought of signing the right-hander as a free agent in the course of the 2020-21 offseason. Instead, Odorizzi signed a two-year cope with Houston price $23.25MM in assured cash, with the 2023 season additionally coated by way of a $6.25MM participant possibility with a $3.25MM buyout. Quite a lot of accidents have restricted Odorizzi to 157 2/3 innings over his two years with the Astros, however he has posted a 4.22 ERA regardless of solely a 19.5% strikeout price. The righty has relied on above-average stroll charges and (in 2022) an excellent hard-contact price to retire batters.
Acquiring Odorizzi would have some echoes of the Cards’ deadline strikes final yr, after they landed veterans Jon Lester, JA Happand so forth Wade LeBlanc within the wake of a number of rotation accidents. Odorizzi not less than has a lot better bottom-line outcomes than that trio did when St. Louis swung these trades, and but the Cardinals’ hope in a turn-around was rewarded, as all three pitched effectively and helped the Cards attain the wild card recreation.
St. Louis followers weren’t overly impressed with the membership’s technique finally yr’s deadline, and given all the opposite massive names linked to the Cards in commerce rumors this summer time, touchdown “solely” Odorizzi to handle the rotation might once more be seen as underwhelming. However, because the A’s are identified to be asking for a ton for Montas and certainly the Angels and Red Sox would desire a good return even for leases like Syndergaard or Eovaldi, Odorizzi may very well be an honest Plan C-type of possibility if the Cards really feel the opposite asking costs are too excessive…..or, if the Cardinals direct their prospect capital in the direction of buying somebody like Juan Soto.
It can be doable that the Cardinals might land multiple of those pitchers, because the membership has an more and more acute want for rotation depth. Beyond Adam Wainwright, Miles Mikolas, Andre Pallante, Dakota Hudson (activated off the 15-day injured checklist at present) and Matthew Liberatore together with the present beginning 5, as Jack Flaherty continues to be weeks away from getting back from shoulder issues.
Steven Matz was supposed to supply some assist when he returned from his personal IL stint final week, besides the left-hander tore his MCL in his return begin. It is not identified but if Matz will want surgical procedure, but President of baseball operations John Mozeliak advised Goold and different reporters at present that there’s solely a “sliver” of an opportunity Matz pitches once more in 2022, and it will likely be “very, very tough to get him again this yr.”
Turning to the Astros’ state of affairs, buying and selling Odorizzi would appear like an uncommon transfer for a World Series contender that theoretically would need as a lot pitching depth as doable for a deep run by way of October. However, the Astros might really feel they’ve such depth already, with a six-man rotation on the lively roster, Lance McCullers Jr. on his means again from the 60-day IL, and another younger arms in reserve within the minors.
To that finish, Houston has reportedly been prepared to debate trades of controllable pitchers with different groups. Odorizzi would not precisely match that description, in fact, however it will seem to be the Astros can be much more open to transferring a veteran somewhat than a longer-term rotation piece like Cristian Javier p Jose Urquidy.