What will the 2023 season look like for the St. Louis Cardinals? Here are four bold predictions.
The St. Louis Cardinals stormed to the top of the National League Central in 2022, then saw their dreams of returning to the World Series quickly come crashing down as the eventual NL champion Philadelphia Phillies swept them out of the postseason in the Wild Card round.
So what awaits the Cardinals in 2023? Let’s look into the crystal ball to find out.
St. Louis Cardinals bold prediction: They will run away with the NL Central
While some predictions (including PECOTA) show the Cardinals in a dogfight for the division crown with the Milwaukee Brewers, that’s just simply not going to happen in 2023.
St. Louis won the division by seven games over the Brewers last season and, while the Cardinals may have lost of pair of Hall of Famers in Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina, signing Willson Contreras to a long-term deal didn’t just help the Cardinals, but also hurt one of their division (and most bitter) rivals in Chicago.
It’s not too wild of a thought to think that the St. Louis lineup will be better with Contreras in it, plus rebound seasons from Tyler O’Neill and the debut of heralded prospect Jordan Walker could be enough to push the Cardinals into what is not only projected to be the strongest lineup in the division, but also one of the strongest in the National League.
This season, St. Louis wins the Central by a wider margin that 2022. Let’s say by a nine-game cushion (but it won’t be enough to earn a bye with the monsters lurking in the NL West and East. More about that in a moment).