The Cardinals have a strangle hold on the first wild card spot, as they're 3½ games ahead of the Reds and a whopping 8½ games ahead of the Nationals. They're also only two games behind the Pirates in the NL Central. It'd be surprising not to see them playing playoff baseball. Again. Jerks.
Needs (likelihood to deal for position in italics)
Shortstop-High: The Cards have inexplicably stuck with Pete Kozma, even with another option in Ryan Jackson doing well in Triple-A. Jackson doesn't figure to be much of an improvement over Kozma so the Cardinals are surely looking at solutions from outside the organization.
Center Field-Low: Jon Jay has been playing center field, but he's having a down year after putting up solid numbers the past three seasons. The Cards could turn to Oscar Taveras if they feel they need to make a change, either with Taveras playing center field or Taveras playing right field and moving Beltran to center field.
Fits on the Cub Roster
If the Cardinals look elsewhere for a center fielder, David DeJesus could be an option.
What's in it for the Cubs?
Sickels' Top 20 Sickels Prospects
Fangraphs' Top 15 Cardinals Prospects
MLB.com Top 20 Cardinals Prospects
This is honestly too depressing to go into any sort of depth on. Coming into the season, the Cardinals had the best farm system in the game. They have arguably the best prospect in the game (Oscar Taveras). Want top 100 position players? The Cardinals have second baseman Kolten Wong and OF Oscar Taveras. Want top 100 pitchers? The Cardinals have Carlos Martinez, Trevor Rosenthal (with the big league team), Shelby Miller (pitching great in the majors) and Michael Wacha. It really stinks.
Who Says No?
David DeJesus for Steve Bean
Here's an excerpt of Fangraphs' write-up on Bean, a raw catcher in rookie league ball:
"As one talent evaluator told me, "He has a chance to be a plus defender who can hit.... He has a deceptively-powerful frame... with pretty good rhythm from the left side (of the plate)." Bean still has work to do on his defense by learning the nuances of the position - mainly because of his youth and inexperience . He's a good leader, has 1.85-1.9 pop times and "he's learning to call a good game.""
Overall Fit- Low
Man, am I jealous of the Cardinals. They have pretty much no needs and can keep all of their stud prospects to develop. I've been dreading doing this write-up since I started this series.
Next Up: Cincinnati Reds