For the 2021 MLB preseason, The Game Day has compiled 2021 Cardinals Prop Bets, including St. Louis Futures Odds & Picks. I’ll list a few 2021 Cardinals Picks, Player Props and Team Prop wagers that MLB bettors can target.
St. Louis Cardinals Futures Bets: 2021 Team & Player Props
(Odds provided by PointsBet)
Player Props & 2021 Cardinals Future Bets
2021 NL MVP
- Nolan Arenado (+1200)
- Paul Goldschmidt (+4000)
- Paul DeJong (+5000)
Nolan Arenado finally reaches an interesting crossroads in his storied career, as he’ll play his home games outside of Coors Field for the first time after arriving in St. Louis via trade this offseason. The perennial All-Star averaged a whopping 39.8 home runs and 124.2 RBI while churning out a .300/.362/.575 line between the 2015 and 2019 seasons yet was never able to garner MVP honors. Arenado’s career .263/.322/.471 line on the road pales in comparison to his .322/.376/.609 slash at Coors, so it remains to be seen if he’d be able to get anywhere close to the 40-homer, 130-RBI type of seasons he’s mustered on multiple occasions that still haven’t been enough to earn him the award.
Some hope for Arenado to continue churning out eye-popping numbers can be gleaned from the case of Paul Goldschmidt, who also came over to the Cardinals from an NL West club and hitter-friendly home park (at the time). Goldy saw no drop off in his numbers in his 2019 debut campaign in St. Louis, coming just two homers shy of his career-high 36 while also knocking in 97 runs and slashing .260/.346/.476. He was excellent during the shortened 2020 campaign as well, posting an elite .304/.417/.466 line. With Arenado likely hitting directly behind him, Goldschmidt now has some priceless protection he didn’t previously enjoy, which makes him a potentially outstanding sneaky value bet at his odds.
Paul DeJong is a bit of a forgotten man in the trio, but the young shortstop has already turned heads with 25- and 30-homer tallies in two of his first three pre-2020 seasons. Where DeJong has been lacking since his first taste of the bigs in 2017 is in his slash line, which averages out to a pedestrian .238/.317/.428 over the last three seasons. The shortstop’s strikeout rate also rose to a career-high 28.7 percent over last year’s smaller sample, so he seemingly has plenty of work to do to pull up his overall offensive profile to the point where he’d be a serious contender for this award.
2021 Most Regular Season Home Runs
- Nolan Arenado (+3000)
As already alluded to, Arenado has been a solid but markedly less elite hitter on the road during his career. That includes the long ball, as Arenado averages one home run per 22.7 plate appearances when traveling, compared to one per every 16.9 at Coors. As such, the move to Busch Stadium, which had the fourth-lowest home-run rating (0.831) in ESPN’s Park Factor metric back in 2019, figures to certainly serve as an obstacle. On Arenado’s side is the fact he has historically hit well at Busch as a Rockie and slugged four homers in 44 at-bats there during the 2017-19 seasons.
2021 Most Regular Season RBI
- Nolan Arenado (+4000)
Arenado should have Tommy Edman, DeJong and Goldschmidt hitting directly ahead of him most days in the coming season, which is going to offer him a solid amount of RBI opportunities. As mentioned previously, DeJong does need to boost his presence on the bases a good bit to drag himself in the above-average range, but Edman and Goldschmidt could both be elite in that category.
Potentially working against Arenado in this regard could be Goldy himself, considering his own sky-high RBI upside. Arenado does bring excellent situational-hitting credentials to the table, however – he’s a career .313/.377/.583 hitter with runners on base and owns a .323/.403/.612 slash with men in scoring position specifically.
NL Rookie of the Year
- Dylan Carlson (+900)
Carlson is pushing to win the starting right field job this spring, and his first extended big-league opportunity has been highly anticipated since he produced an outstanding .361/.418/.681 slash at Triple-A Memphis in a 79 plate-appearance sample back in 2019. The 22-year-old also put together a 21-homer effort at the Double-A level a season prior, laced 11 of his first 22 big-league hits for extra bases a year ago, and has the above-average speed to boot (38 steals in six minor-league stops). Carlson’s odds are currently just the fourth shortest on the leaderboard, and if he’s able to garner a starting job and fill the Cardinals’ vacant leadoff spot right from the jump, he could prove an excellent value at this price.
2021 NL Cy Young Award
- Jack Flaherty (+1400)
Flaherty has three straight seasons of strikeout rates greater than 29.0 percent and double-digit K/9s. He’s also proven durable early in his career, leading to him logging 61 starts over the 2018 and 2019 seasons while falling just short of 200 innings in the latter.
Flaherty has topped out at 11 wins in a season, however, so he’ll have to earn a lot more positive decisions and likely up his innings count well over the 200-mark to generate the kind of all-around numbers necessary to garner the award for the NL’s top pitcher.
His home stadium, as illustrated earlier, does work in his favor, but Flaherty would do well to cut down the home runs allowed some after posting HR/9s of between 1.2 and 1.7 in three of his first four seasons. The field is a highly competitive one as well – the likes of Jacob deGrom, Trevor Bauer and Max Scherzer are just some standing in his way.
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