During this past season I made five different “Bold Predictions” for the 2018 Cardinals, and I can say I did… Well terrible.
DeJong hits 40 bombs – X
Donaldson gets traded to STL – X
Wacha recieves Cy Young votes – X
Mikolas wins Cy Young – X (Probably)
Mikolas wins 15 – √ (18 Wins)
I can confidently say that I will do better this season… Maybe
But as you can read from the title, this off-season will start pretty bold.
And what’s better is that you get two in this prediction.
The St. Louis Cardinals sign 3B Josh Donaldson to a 3 YR Deal worth $52M
I think this is one of the first dominoes to fall during the off-season. The Cardinals have been linked to Donaldson for what seems to be forever, so now is the perfect time to just make it happen. The Cardinals are currently loaded with three potential impact players at 3rd in the next few seasons in Nolan Gorman, Elehuris Montero, and Malcolm Nunez. Signing Donaldson for a 3 year deal is the perfect amount of time to see how these players develop in your system. I’d make a bet that one of them puts it together and is tearing it up in AAA Memphis in 2021 when Donaldson’s deal is up.
Donaldson has the injury history, but I have a feeling that if he does get bit by the injury bug again, Yairo Munoz is the likely choice to get some playing time. I’m okay with that being the case as long as Munoz works on his defense at 3rd. When healthy, Donaldson can be a solid impact bat in the middle of the order. He has put up an OPS of .798 or above since 2013. If he can iron out some of his injury problems, Donaldson can genuinely help the Cardinals in 2019. With him at 3B, you get to keep DeJong at SS where he can continue to progress.
The St. Louis Cardinals sign OF Bryce Harper to a 10 YR Deal worth $360M
The addition of Donaldson makes the organization look a little more appealing for Harper in my opinion. I have a feeling that he will like the situation the Cardinals are in with their young players and he will see an opportunity to win. Despite this, it might still come down to a bidding war, a war that the Cardinals should win. They have the budget to make any offer necessary to sign Harper. He is a tremendous hitter having a career OPS of .900. He has to work on some defensive mistakes from 2018, but I assume he will go back towards his career numbers in the field.
The Cardinals have a huge need in right field that Harper fills. Dexter Fowler was a bad contract… They need to address that and move on. Tyler O’Neill could be a solid backup or even move to left field once Marcell Ozuna reaches free agency. All I’m saying is that a full time outfield of Harper, Bader, and O’Neill could look pretty good in a couple years.
- Matt Carpenter – 1B
- Harrison Bader – CF
- Marcell Ozuna – LF
- Bryce Harper – RF
- Josh Donaldson – 3B
- Paul DeJong – SS
- Yadier Molina – C
- Kolten Wong – 2B
- Miles Mikolas – P
That’s a lineup that can win you 95 games. Nothing is for certain, as injuries do play a huge part in this game, but the Cardinals have depth. I don’t see a reason why this cannot happen and the team can’t make a splash in 2019. It might be bold to say they will get both, but hey, one can dream.
Stay tuned for more Bold Predictions as the 2019 season kicks off!
Thanks for Reading
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