MLB rumors: Cardinals connected to free agent Blake Snell
The St. Louis Cardinals made several moves to improve their starting rotation in the early weeks of free agency, signing Sonny Gray, Lance Lynn, and Kyle Gibson. Still, there's a pervading sense that St. Louis needs one more top-shelf arm to hold down the fort next to Gray, the reigning AL Cy Young runner-up?
Well, why not the reigning NL Cy Young winner, Blake Snell? That is a possibility MLB.com's John Denton mentions in his latest column. Much has been made of a potential Cardinals reunion with Jordan Montgomery, but Snell is arguably an even better target. He certainly offers a higher ceiling, fresh off a dominant campaign in which he led the National League in ERA (2.55) and hits per nine innings (5.8).
Snell reportedly asked the New York Yankees for nine years and $270 million, so the 31-year-old won't come cheap. While Snell has few peers when he's at the top of his game, consistency year-to-year has not been a strength. He's a two-time Cy Young winner, but Snell went five years in between those awards with zero All-Star berths and without eclipsing 128.2 innings pitched. Injuries are a concern, as is he tendency to lose command and give up walks (another, less savory category where Snell led the National League last season).
Still, despite the valid concerns about Snell long-term, the price is going to drop eventually. No team will give him $270 million. At a certain point, it becomes a question of which team is willing to take the risk to land an undeniable talent. Snell has the ability to change St. Louis' fortunes and put the Cards back on the postseason map after their disastrous 2023 campaign. It's a move John Mozeliak and the front office should at least consider.