Known as the "Route 66" rivalry, battles between the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals over the past decades have come with nothing but excitement and intensity. St. Louis holds a slight edge in the all-time series with a 1,259-1,209-18 (W-L-D) record, which shows how even these teams are.
These NL Central squads enter the 2023 offseason in very different positions, though. The Cubs are looking for key additions to a rebuilding squad, while the Cardinals have another division title in their sights. One way Chicago could get a leg up on its rival is by poaching one of its players in free agency.
Chicago Cubs Free Agency
The Cardinals are only losing two notable names to the open market in outfielder Corey Dickerson and pitcher Jose Quintana. While the Cubs already have Ian Happ and Christopher Morel manning the outfield, they did only rank 20th in team ERA (4.00) this past season. Quintana is an obvious fit.
The 33-year-old hurler shined for the Cardinals after he was acquired at the August trade deadline. Quintana posted a 3-2 record to go along with a 2.12 ERA and 1.12 across 12 starts with St. Louis (62.2 innings). On the year, his 0.4 home runs allowed per nine innings mark ranked first in the majors.
It's interesting to note that Quintana logged a career-best ERA (2.93) during what was his 11th season in the league. His curveball, changeup and sinker each have enough run on them to confuse batters at the plate. That's crucial to having success in a sport that now feeds on hitting the fastball.
A starting rotation of Marcus Stroman, Kyle Hendricks, Keegan Thompson and Quintana would give the Cubs a reason for optimism in 2023. It doesn't hurt that the move puts the Cardinals in a worse spot as well. Forcing them to pivot to another No. 5 starter could pay dividends in divisional series.
Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. 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.