Cardinals To Pursue 2 Top Free Agent Pitchers

After a disastrous season featuring one of the worst pitching staffs in recent team memory, the St. Louis Cardinals have “yeoman’s work to do to fill our rotation," says president of baseball operations John Mozeliak. With that in mind, he has two of the top free agent starting pitchers on his radar this offseason.  

According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Mozeliak has his eyes set on the Philadelphia Phillies' Aaron Nola and the Minnesota Twins' Sonny Gray. And he's presumably watching them closely this postseason as they're both still in action and performing quite well.

They want to move swiftly on a few offers to jump ahead of the market — and the messaging. According to multiple sources, veteran starters Sonny Gray and Aaron Nola are free agents the Cardinals have identified as good fits and plan to approach to see if the feeling is mutual. Both have already won playoff games this week.

Another currently active playoff performer, Jordan Montgomery, was a Cardinal earlier in the season, and Mozeliak says he hasn't "closed the door" on talking with him, as well. He also added that he would like to bring in two relievers for the bullpen.

The Cardinals finished 24th in the majors in team ERA in 2023 (at 4.79), and 27th in WHIP (1.46). They were even worse in opponents' batting average, placing second-last in baseball, surrendering a .276 average.

For a team that has always prided itself on pitching and defense, it's obvious why Mozeliak referred to "yeoman's work" needing to be done this winter. 

Photo: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports