MLB Rumors: Cardinals OF suitor, Juan Soto latest, Yamamoto's price tag increase

  • Yoshinobu Yamamoto could sign for a lot of money in free agency
  • Two teams are being held up in Juan Soto trade pursuit
  • One St. Louis Cardinals outfielder is on the trade block

Aug 4, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto (17) reacts against Korea in a
Aug 4, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto (17) reacts against Korea in a / Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports
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John Mozeliak says Cardinals are taking calls on Tyler O'Neill

The St. Louis Cardinals accomplished their goal of filling three spots in the starting rotation after they signed Sonny Gray, Lance Lynn, and Kyle Gibson this offseason. Now that that's done, fans are probably wondering whether the team is done for business or if they will make additional moves this offseason.

While appearing on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM, Cardinals team president John Mozeliak discussed the team's offense and whether there will be any changes. Mozeliak says that he likes the club and the main thing will be to find at-bats for certain players. When discussing the outfield, Mozeliak mentions that it would likely be Lars Nootbaar, Jordan Walker, and Tommy Edman starting, with Dylan Carlson being their fourth option. As for Tyler O'Neill, Mozeliak says they are listening to trade offers for him.

O'Neill being shopped by the Cardinals isn't new. The team put O'Neill on the trade market at this past season's deadline but nothing transpired. While he has dealt with injuries in recent years that have resulted in a lack of production at the plate, O'Neill does provide upside.

So, who would be interested in O'Neill?

The New York Yankees were linked to O'Neill at the deadline last year, given their need for an everyday outfielder. The Yankees and Cardinals have done business before, notably, the Jordan Montgomery-Harrison Bader deal at the 2022 trade deadline. But neither side reached an agreement. As of right now, it appears the Yankees are more focused on acquiring Juan Soto from the San Diego Padres. It could be worth exploring if the Yankees ultimately fail to land Soto.

Another team that could use O'Neill is the Toronto Blue Jays. Like the Yankees, the Blue Jays are one of the teams in contact with the Padres for Soto. But let's not forget that Toronto is also linked to Los Angeles Angels ace pitcher and slugging designated hitter Shohei Ohtani.

MLB Network insider Jon Morosi says that the Blue Jays may be linked to both Ohtani and Soto, but they can realistically only add one of them.

If the Blue Jays move on from Soto, they would need to look at other options. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that the Blue Jays were one of the teams who asked the Cardinals about acquiring Carlson. Could they pivot to O'Neill if he is a more realistic option?

O'Neill is coming off a 2023 campaign in which he recorded a .231 batting average, a .312 on-base percentage, a .403 slugging percentage, nine home runs, 21 RBI, 27 runs scored, 55 hits, 67 strikeouts, and 28 walks in 238 at-bats (72 games). As an outfielder, O'Neill holds a .983 fielding percentage with 108 putouts, five assists, and two errors in 115 chances. O'Neill missed time due to a back injury.

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