2024 St. Louis Cardinals Confront Fork in the Road

2024 St. Louis Cardinals Confront Fork in the Road

Namely, Oliver Marmol will be feeling serious heat in 2024. And there is no certainty that the St. Louis Cardinals will pull out of their 2023 baseball betting odds collapse. Following a 93-69 record and a National League Central title in 2022, the St. Louis Cardinals fell to 71-91 in 2023. The Cardinals fired Mike Shildt after the 2021 season. Even though Shildt never had a losing record and produced three playoff campaigns in his final three seasons. Shildt’s replacement, Oliver Marmol, was the man who presided over the 2023 collapse.

2024 St. Louis Cardinals

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2024 St. Louis Cardinals Manager

Since 2022, Oliver Marmol has been the manager of the Cardinals. His career sportsbook record is 164-160, with a Central Division title in 2022.

2024 St. Louis Cardinals Key Players

RHP Sonny Gray is the Cardinals’ number-one starter. Last season, Gray had an MLB odds record of 8-8 with a 2.79 ERA and 1.15 WHIP.

Meanwhile, 1B Paul Goldschmidt produced 89 runs, 31 doubles, 25 home runs, and 80 RBI with a .268 average and .810 OPS.

2024 Cardinals Offseason Moves

Key offseason acquisitions: RHP Sonny Gray, RHP Kyle Gibson, RHP Lance Lynn, RHP Andrew Kittredge, RHP Keynan Middleton, INF Matt Carpenter

Key offseason departures: RHP Adam Wainwright, OF Tyler O’Neill, C Andrew Knizner, OF Richie Palacios

Specifically, pitching was an unmitigated disaster for the Cardinals and their offseason focus. Pitching failed the Cardinals in 2023. Consider the team allowed the seventh-most runs and recorded the second-fewest strikeouts in the Majors.

Thus, St. Louis set out to overhaul that group this offseason. In particular, their starting rotation. The Cardinals struck early to sign veteran free agents Gray, Gibson, and Lynn to provide solid innings. But did the Cardinals do enough to fortify in that area? Gray is the youngest of the team’s three new starters, at age 34. And most analytics still project the rotation as just the 19th-best in MLB.

Certainly, rebuilding the ragged rotation was the Cardinals’ off-season focus. And they moved very quickly. Gray is a big upgrade. However, he will have a hard time sustaining last year’s homer-suppressing magic.

Still, the rest of St. Louis’ offseason was seemingly spent raising the floor. In addition to bringing back an old friend in Matt Carpenter. Instead of raising the ceiling. However, for a team that lost a shocking 91 games in 2023 and plans to resume its “always a contender” status, that may not be enough. St. Louis ranks 10th for MLB payroll.

2024 Cardinals Recap

Last season, the St. Louis Cardinals had a record of 71-91 and finished 5th in the National League Central Division. Offensively, St. Louis ranked 19th for runs scored, 15th for batting average, 15th for OPS, 12th for home runs, and 20th for stolen bases. Meanwhile, defensively, St. Louis ranked 24th for earned run average, 27th for WHIP, 9th for strikeouts, 23rd for quality starts, 4th for fewest errors, and 23rd for bullpen ERA. St. Louis was -1722 on the money line and -1471 on the run line.

Last season, the Cardinals were one of the worst values on the board. St. Louis is known as a perennial playoff contender so a bad season means catastrophe for gamblers backing them. So far, the Cardinals are getting a moderate amount of future market action. Gamblers are expecting such a normally respected franchise to come back with a vengeance.

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