A complete list of every St. Louis Cardinals free agent and predictions for where they will sign.
The St. Louis Cardinals were a powerhouse in the NL Central all season, ultimately winning the division with a comfortable seven-game lead over the second-place Milwaukee Brewers.
Things looked promising for this Cardinals club heading into the postseason but nothing went according to plan for the Redbirds, as they were quickly eliminated by the Phillies in the Wild Card round.
With eyes aimed toward the offseason and free agency, the club is set to have some significant players coming off the books including two legends retiring from the game, Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina.
A complete list of Cardinals free agents with predictions.
3B Nolan Arenado (2023 player option)
2022 stats: 148 G, 30 HR, 103 RBI, 73 R, .293 AVG, 154 OPS+, 7.9 bWAR
Somehow, Nolan Arenado continues to get better and better as his career marches on. The 2022 campaign is statistically his best season yet, as he put up a career-high 154 OPS+ and lowered his strikeout rate to a career-low 11.6%.
In what could easily be an MVP-winning offseason for the seven-time All-Star Game selection, all signs point to him exercising his opt-out clause and testing free agency. Simply put, he’d be a fool not. The list of teams in on acquiring his services is endless.
There have been rumors floating around that Arenado has already made his decision and chosen not to exercise the opt-out clause but until the day of free agent filing, it’s impossible to know for sure what the plan is.
Prediction: Arenado picks up his player option and remains a Cardinal for one more year.
OF Corey Dickerson
2022 stats: 96 G, 6 HR, 36 RBI, 28 R, .267 AVG, 100 OPS+, 0.1 bWAR
33-year-old Corey Dickerson seems to have his best days behind him as a big leaguer, but he still was right at league-average on the season in under 100 games for the Cards.
Never much of a threat on defense (aside from his random Gold Glove Award in 2018), he should be nothing more than a designated hitter/occasional left fielder. When he’s on, he possesses 10-15 home run power and should be able to find a new home with relative ease this offseason.
Prediction: Pittsburgh Pirates
LHP José Quintana
2022 stats: 32 GS, 165.2 IP, 2.93 ERA, 2.99 FIP, 137 SO, 47 BB
José Quintana waited until his age-33 season to have the best performance of his entire career. After a solid 20-start stretch with the Pirates, he found himself flipped inter-division to the Cardinals where he continued to excel, posting a 2.01 ERA in 12 starts for the Redbirds.
Quintana managed to improve his game all across the board, having his best season since arguably all the way back to 2016.
Of course, Quintana would be an excellent fit on the Cardinals moving forward but there’s a chance he may have played himself into a bigger paycheck than the Cardinals want to hand out to him.
Prediction: Baltimore Orioles
RHP Adam Wainwright
2022 stats: 32 GS, 191.2 IP, 3.71 ERA, 3.66 FIP, 143 SO, 54 BB
There is not a whole lot to discuss with Adam Wainwright, because if he doesn’t choose to retire, he is going to remain a St. Louis Cardinal.
“Waino” recently wrapped up his 17th season in the big leagues, all spent with the Cardinals, where he made three All-Star Games as well as two Gold Glove Awards and a World Series ring all the way back in 2006 when he was a relief pitcher.
At 41 years old and calling an annual contender a home for the past two decades, there is not much incentive for Wainwright to go elsewhere. Look for him to re-up with the Cards for one more one-year contract before calling it a career.
Prediction: Re-signs with the Cardinals