As the Houston Astros celebrate their 2022 World Series victory, all 30 MLB clubs can officially turn their attention to free agency. Teams are free to sign players as of Thursday, Nov. 10, with the St. Louis Cardinals being one team to watch following the retirements of Yadier Molina and Albert Pujols.
After being swept in the Wild Card Round, Cardinals fans hope that their team is active this offseason. After all, it's been 11 years since St. Louis' last championship and three years since its last postseason series victory, so something has to give sooner than later.
Here are three players that the Cardinals need to sign when MLB free agency begins on Thursday.
Cardinals Free Agency
1. Willson Contreras, C
Willson Contreras was a popular name thrown around ahead of the trade deadline but ultimately remained with the Chicago Cubs. Now, the talented backstop is a free agent, making him the perfect replacement for Molina. The three-time All-Star is one of the more offensively talented catchers in the Majors, proven by his racking up 21-plus home runs in each of the last three full-length seasons. Contreras is also only 30 years old, meaning he's a solid long-term solution for the Cardinals. Throw in the fact that he also had better offensive numbers (24 HR, 55 RBI) than Molina and Andrew Knizner combined (9 HRs, 49 RBIs), it's easy to see why Contreras is a perfect fit for the Cardinals.
2. Mitch Haniger, RF
The Cardinals' outfield was somewhat of a mess last season, not producing much offensive support. Someone who could help out in that area is none other than Mitch Haniger. Though the 2012 first-rounder only played 57 games due to injury last season, his 11 HRs and 34 RBIs put him on pace for 31 and 97, respectively, in a 162-game season. Haniger is also an extremely tough player, having played 157 games twice since 2018, finishing top 20 in AL MVP voting in both of those instances. With the potential to still be a 30-HR/100-RBI player, the Cardinals need to explore signing Haniger if they want to give their outfield a legitimate boost.
3. Xander Bogaerts, SS
MLB insider Jon Heyman reported in September that the Cardinals hope to land a superstar shortstop this offseason. With several big names available, it'd be a shock if St. Louis doesn't take a swing at Xander Bogaerts. The four-time MLB All-Star was one of the few brights spots in the Boston Red Sox's underwhelming season, tallying 15 HRs with 73 RBIs while slashing .307/.377/.456 in 150 games. Not only is he reliable offensively, but Bogaerts' .983 fielding percentage was above his career average (.979). Furthermore, his 5.7 WAR was the second-highest mark of his career. With two World Series rings around his fingers, Bogaerts also brings much-needed experience that could help the Cardinals become a true championship contender.
Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Devon Platana also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username PepeSilvia0. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.
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