We are moving to the NL Central in our breakdowns of all 30 MLB teams’ top prospects for dynasty leagues. This time we are diving into the St Louis Cardinals, a team that has a knack for developing players that are low-key and turning them into dynasty darlings. This is a system that has several interesting arms that could be great targets for dynasty managers in deep leagues. Let’s dive into the Cardinal’s top 30 prospects.
Top 10 Prospect Breakdowns
Masyn Winn, SS
(105 GP, .288/.359/.474, 18 HR, 99 R, 61 RBI, 17 SB)
The shortstop of the future is here now! Masyn Winn had a solid season, playing 105 games in Triple-A Memphis and slashing .288/.359/.474 with 18 home runs, 99 runs scored, 61 RBIs, and 17 stolen bases in 19 attempts. In addition to the solid numbers in Memphis, Winn improved his plate discipline, lowering his strikeout rate to a career-low 16.7% in 498 plate appearances.
The Cardinals were so impressed with Winn’s production that they called him up to the majors. In 37 games pin St. Louis, Winn slashed .172/.230/.238 with two home runs, 12 RBIs, and two stolen bases with a solid 7.3% walk rate and 19% strikeout rate. Going into spring training Winn should be battling for the everyday shortstop job for the Cards and could provide solid OBP and stolen base counting stats for dynasty managers.
Tink Hence, RHP
(23 GS, 96 IP, 99 K, 4.31 ERA)
Drafted in the second round of the 2020 MLB draft as a two-way player, the Cardinals had Tink Hence focus solely on pitching. Hence ascended two levels in 2023 starting the season in High-A where he struck out 46 batters in 41.2 innings across 11 starts with the Peoria Chiefs. Once Hence was promoted to Double-A Springfield there were struggles for the 20-year-old. Across 12 starts Hence pitched 54.1 innings while striking out 53 batters with a .279 average against finishing the year with a 5.47 ERA. The strikeout rate dropped once Hence was promoted to Double-A and the walks went up to 3.64. Hence still has the potential to be a front-line starter if he can get back to the high strikeout protentional we saw from him in 2022.
Victor Scott II, OF
(132 GP, .303/.369/.425, 9 HR, 63 RBI, 95 R, 94 SB)
One of the fastest guys in the minor leagues this season was Victor Scott, the former West Virginia Mountaineer who swiped 94 bases in 108 attempts in 2023. The speed wasn’t all that was impressive about Vicor Scott as he showed solid improvements with the bat as well. Scott started the season in High-A where he slashed .282/.365/.398 with two home runs, 44 runs scored, and swiped 50 stolen bases in 57 attempts. The patience at the plate was seen from Scott as he walked 9.1% while only striking out 16.9% in his 308 plate appearances.
🌵🏜️STL OF Victor Scott ll was unstoppable this season on the base-paths and continues to show an advanced bat. In 132 GP he had..
• .303 AVG
• .369 OBP
• 9 HR
• 95 R
• 94 SB
— Richard Haake (@Mustbethehawk) October 25, 2023
These results warranted a promotion to Double-A where Scott slashed .323/373/.450 with seven home runs, 51 runs scored, 34 RBIs, and 45 Stolen bases in 52 attempts. The increase in power output Scott was impressive as Scott had 20 extra-base hits in Double-A.
After the season was done the Cardinals sent the speedy Scott out to the Arizona Fall League where he slashed .286/.388/.417 with three home runs, 19 runs scored, and 18 stolen bases in 21 attempts. Victor Scott is one of the game’s hottest prospects right now, skyrocketing up prospects rankings lists and could be securely planting himself inside the top 100 by the start of the 2024 season.
Thomas Saggese, 2B
(139 GP, .306/.374/.530, 26 HR, 111 RBI, 12 SB)
Thomas Saggese, who was extremely impressive in the Rangers organization back in 2022 as well as in Double-A Frisco this season, was a great acquisition for the Cardinals this season. Before the trade, Saggese was slashing .313/.379/.512 with 15 HR, 78 RBI, and eight stolen bases in 93 games played. Once he was traded to the Cards and sent to Double-A Springfield, Saggese continued to hit slashing .331/.403/.662 with 10 home runs, 29 RBIs, and three stolen bases in just 33 games played.
📈📝STL 2B Thomas Seggese has been on fire after the trade to the Cardinals. In his 21 games he’s hitting
• 7 HR
• 17 R
• 16 RBI
• 2 SB
• 12% BB
• 21.7% K
— Richard Haake (@Mustbethehawk) August 25, 2023
Saggese’s walk rate jumped to 10.1% after the trade (up 2%) as well as the HR/FB rate to 25%. After a strong performance, the Cardinals promoted Saggese to finish the year in Tripe-A Memphis where he should start his season in 2024. For dynasty Saggese is a prospect to target this off-season as he should get a chance to crack the big leagues in 2024.
Chase Davis, OF
(34 GP, .212/.366/.269, 15 R, 23 RBI, 3 SB)
Davis was the Cardinal’s first first-round draft pick in 2023 out of the University of Arizona and he offers a big upside. Davis was solid in his final season at Arizona slashing .362/.489/.742 with 21 home runs and 74 RBIs across 57 games played. In his final two seasons in Arizona, Davis had a .414 OBP in 2022 and .489 this year indicating a strong propensity to get on base. With 40 extra-base hits, it is easy to dream of the power potential in the major leagues for Chase Davis.
Once drafted and sent to Low-A Palm Beach, the results were not quite what we expected. In 34 games, Davis slashed just .212/.366/.269 with 15 runs scored, 23 RBIs, and three stolen bases. Now there is some good stuff here if you take a deeper look into the numbers. Davis walked 19.1% of the time in 131 plate appearances contributing to a solid .366 OBP and had six doubles in his 22 total hits. Overall I like Chase Davis’s profile and believe he will be a solid dynast contributor long term.
Tekoah Roby, RHP
(14 GS, 58.1 IP, 69 K, 4.63 ERA)
Coming over from the Texas Rangers in the Montgomery trade at the deadline, Tekoah Roby has solid upside for the Cardinals long term. Roby features three potential plus pitches in his fastball, sweeping slider, and a devastating curveball that induces weak contact and swing and miss. Roby is also working on refining his change-up so that could become an above-average offering long term. In 10 starts with the Double-A Frisco RoughRiders, Roby was a victim of poor defense behind him as his high BABIP indicated. In 46.1 innings pitched Roby had 50 strikeouts good for a 9.71 K/9 and a 5.05 ERA though his FIP was 3.84.
🌵🏜️STL RHP Tekoah Roby was impressive once he was traded to the Cardinals at the deadline. In his 4 starts with Springfield Roby had
• 14.25 K/9
• 2.25 BB/9
• .146 AVG
• 3.00 ERA
— Richard Haake (@Mustbethehawk) October 25, 2023
Once traded to the Cardinals Roby was sent to Double-A Springfield where he faired much better. In four starts Roby struck out 19 batters in 12 innings pitched (14.25 K/9) with a .146 average against and a 3.00 ERA. Roby is bound to make his debut in Triple-A Memphis in 2024 and could push for a debut with a strong showing.
Cooper Hjerpe, LHP
(10 GP, 8 GS, 41 IP, 51 K, 3.51 ERA)
If you haven’t had the chance to watch Cooper Hjerpe’s delivery I strongly advise you to do so. The deception in the release point for Cooper Hjerpe makes him extremely interesting going into 2024. This past season the Cardinals were careful with Hjerpe as he was coming back from a surgery to remove loose bodies in his left elbow. Hjerpe only pitched 41 innings in High-A Peoria where he struck out 51 batters good for a stellar 11.20 K/9 and finished with a 3.51 ERA across 10 appearances (8 starts).
The Cardinals are going to continue to develop Hjerpe as a starter. The southpaw features a plus slider and change-up that far outshines the fastball but this paired with the potential above-average control makes Hjerpe interesting.
Max Rajcic, RHP
(23 GS, 123.1 IP, 123 K, 2.48 ERA)
The Cardinals have got several interesting young arms in the farm system and Max Rajcic stood out in 2023. The 21-year-old right-hander started his first professional season in Low-A striking out 68 batters in 62 innings pitched. This was good for a solid 9.87 K/9 all while having a low 1.31 BB/9 across 12 starts. Rajcic was hard to hit as he held batters to a .182 average against and had a solid 1.89 ERA before his promotion to High-A.
Once in High-A Rajcic continued to be effective starting in 11 games while striking out 55 batters in 61.1 innings pitched. The strikeouts came down a bit to an 8.07 K/9 and the walk jumped to a 2.64 BB/9 as Rajcic seemed to be missing his spots after the promotion. The average against jumped to .249 as well as the ERA to 3.08. Regardless of these results jumping up they are still solid for Max Rajcic and will be a guy I watch closely going into 2024.
Cesar Prieto, SS
(123 GP, .323/.367/.446, 10 HR, 73 R, 69 RBI, 9 SB)
One of the key pieces coming back in the Jack Flaherty trade with Baltimore, Cesar Prieto fits the mold of a Cardinals super utility player that pops! Prieto ascended two levels in 2023 starting the season in Double-A Bowie where he slashed .364/.406/.476 with four home runs, 33 runs scored, and swiped five bases in 58 games played. Fast forward after the trade and you will see Prieto continued to hit slashing .270/.314/.387 with four home runs, 24 runs scored and two stolen bases in 38 games with Triple-A Memphis. Cesar Prieto is patient at the plate as he finished in Memphis with a 14.2% strikeout rate. We should see Cesar Prieto at some point this season with the big league club making him an interesting prospect to have for bench depth in deeper leagues.
Gordon Graceffo, RHP
(21 GP, 18 GS, 86 IP, 81 K, 4.92 ERA)
Coming into the 2023 season all eyes were on Gordon Graceffo who lit up High-A and Double-A in 2022 and looked poised to push for his major league debut. Unfortunately, there were some struggles for Graceffo in Triple-A this season where the 23-year-old had a step back in strikeout rate and a spike in the walks per nine that seemed to bite him. In 86 innings pitched Graceffo had a .256 average against up 40 points over his average in Double-A back in 2022 and a jump in line drive rate from 18.7% up to 25.4%.
Overall Graceffo is a solid pitcher but had a rough season making this a prime time to inquire on the cost to acquire in dynasty leagues. With three above-average offerings in a fastball, slider, and change-up Graceffo has the repertoire to remain a starter long-term despite his brief appearances out of the bullpen in 2023.
Top 30 St. Louis Cardinals Prospect Rankings