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Cardinals zeroing in on obvious Yadier Molina replacement, but is it a mistake?

The St. Louis Cardinals are in the market to replace franchise legend Yadier Molina and they are closing in on Willson Contreras. Is that the right move?

One of the big focuses for the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2022-23 offseason has long been set as finding a backstop to face one of the iconic players in franchise history, Yadier Molina. And one of the most obvious options all along has been stealing a star from one of the club’s biggest rivals by signing Willson Contreras.

Now it appears that’s coming closer to fruition.

On Tuesday, MLB insider Jon Heyman reported that the Cardinals “remain among favorites” to sign Contreras, a Cubs fan favorite, to be their catcher of the future and usher in a new era at Busch Stadium.

In a vacuum, this feels like a huge win for St. Louis as they upgrade at the plate. But there is a world in which Contreras is more of a gamble for the Redbirds than some people might think.

Cardinals zeroing in on Willson Contreras to replace Yadier Molina might come with a warning label

Though Molina struggled mightily to find any kind of consistency at the plate in the final few years of his career, one area in which he remained a stalwart was his defensive ability. Throughout the entirety of his career, he was regarded as one of the best defensive players at the position, which proved valuable with the development of pitchers as well.

For the upgrade that the Cardinals would be making at the plate by signing Contreras, they would be sacrificing a great deal of defense to do so. The soon-to-be former Cubs catcher has proven to be one of the best at the position at the dish, but it’s behind it where he’s lacked consistency and, frankly, anything in the realm of what Molina offered.

St. Louis has a stable of high-upside young arms both in the majors already and in the minor leagues as well that could use development. As such, bringing Contreras into the mix would potentially upset the apple cart in a way that having Molina behind the plate wouldn’t. That’s a bit of a risk just to upgrade the hitting at the catching position.

It’s not written in stone yet that the Cardinals are signing Willson Contreras as they’ve also been connected to trades for the likes of Sean Murphy and James McCann. But this has been one of the most consistent rumors of the offseason, yet it’s a move that the organization must make with caution for the aforementioned pitfalls it could yield.

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Denise T. Jones

Denise T. Jones is a passionate sports enthusiast with a knack for capturing the electrifying essence of the sporting world. As a dedicated sports news writer for AccessTV.co, Denise brings her unparalleled love for sports and her adept storytelling skills to deliver captivating and insightful content to readers worldwide. With a keen eye for detail and a deep understanding of various sports disciplines, Denise ensures that her articles provide comprehensive coverage of the latest events, matches, and developments in the sports realm. Whether it's the thrill of the game-winning goal, the drama of a nail-biting finish, or the heartwarming stories of triumph against all odds, Denise encapsulates it all with eloquence and precision. Denise's journey in sports journalism has been marked by her unwavering commitment to accuracy, integrity, and excellence. Her ability to blend statistical analysis with compelling narratives sets her apart as a trusted voice in the industry. From the adrenaline-pumping action on the field to the strategic maneuvers off it, Denise brings every aspect of the sporting world to life through her writing. With a finger on the pulse of the sports scene, Denise T. Jones continues to inspire and inform readers with her dynamic and engaging sports coverage on AccessTV.co.

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