St. Louis linked to Frankie Montas
The St. Louis Cardinals have been linked to A star Frankie Montas, but a deal seems unlikely.
With Jack Flaherty on the disabled list, the St. Louis Cardinals’ throwing depth has been tested. In turn, they saw brilliant pitching performances from Miles Mikolas and Adam Wainwright. Dakota Hudson pitched well after a slow start. But they also saw struggles from Jordan Hicks and Steven Matz.
Which means the Cardinals will likely be in the market to start pitching even after Flaherty returns. And they’ve already been linked to right-hander Frankie Montas, who will be the top starting pitcher available at the trade deadline, according to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman.
Montas, 29, will need a carry in a potential trade, which makes me wary of the Cardinals being major players for his services. That said, he’s signed until next season, and that could increase the chances of a potential trade. But president of baseball operations John Mozeliak has shown little willingness to part ways with his top prospects and, in all likelihood, a deal with Montas will require one of Nolan Gorman, Matthew Liberatore or Jordan Walker to be the headliner.
It’s just me speculating, of course, but the market for Montas will be huge and so any team that acquires the right-hander will have to pay a premium. In eight games this season, he has posted a 3.67 ERA and a 53/13 strikeout ratio. He would give the Cardinals something they desperately lack besides Wainwright: a starter capable of throwing 200 or more innings, while Montas threw 187 innings (32 starts) last season.
Montas would immediately slide near the top of the Cardinals rotation and on paper a unit that includes Montas, Flaherty (healthy), Wainwright, Mikolas and Matz is pretty good. And come playoff time, having that rotation and Hudson, who is capable of throwing important innings, coming out of the bullpen would be a nice luxury to have.
The likelihood, at least for now, seems low. But I would expect the Cardinals to be on the hunt for a starting pitcher in July — and as president of baseball operations John Mozeliak proved last year with his acquisitions of Jon Lester and JA Happ, they come in a way people sometimes don’t expect.