September 23, 2021

NL Central offseason preview — Cardinals, Cubs, Brewers all need refresh (ESPN)

With free agency underway, the offseason is going to pick up steam. What are the big questions facing all 30 teams?

We now turn to the NL Central, where the top three teams have each won the division once in the past three years.

Team-by-team offseason previews: NL East | NL West | AL East

St. Louis Cardinals: The Cardinals always have pitching, but how will they evolve on offense?

2019 record: 91-71
2020 World Series odds: 20-1

The Cardinals ranked 11th in OPS and 10th in runs scored in the National League in 2019 despite trading for Paul Goldschmidt last offseason. After a good power year in 2018, St. Louis reverted to some of its old ways: They led the league in stolen bases but had the fewest home runs of any playoff team.

With Marcell Ozuna expected to reject St. Louis’ qualifying offer to become a free agent, the Cardinals can embark on increasing their production at third base and in the outfield. One place they’re bound to get it is with a full season from the dynamic Tommy Edman. His .850 OPS in 92 games led…

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