Cardinals reportedly prioritizing pitching after losing Heyward

St. Louis missed out on re-signing Jason Heyward and now is looking for more pitching.

Jerry Lai/Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The St. Louis Cardinals have missed out top free-agent targets David Price and Jason Heyward this offseason. In addition, the Cardinals have also lost starting pitching John Lackey to the Chicago Cubs and Lance Lynn to injury. 

Despite the sour outcome for the offseason thus far, the Cardinals are not getting ahead of themselves as they continue to improve the club for the 2016 season. General Manager John Mozeliak wants to focus primarily on building St. Louis’ starting pitching, according to CBS St. Louis

"Just to chase an outfielder now because we were looking at Heyward is not something we’ll probably do," Mozeliak said. "There’s going to be speculation over the next two or three weeks but my focus now is going to look more on what we could do to continue to ramp up pitching."

Heyward, along with Lackey, spurned the Cardinals and opted to sign with the division-rival Chicago Cubs. Nevertheless, three star outfielders — Justin Upton, Alex Gordon and Yoenis Cespedes — remain on the market while notable free-agent pitchers such as Mike Leake, Scott Kazmir, Wei-Yin Chen and Yovani Gallardo are still available. With the Cardinals putting a priority on adding pitching, the team could be fine with Randal Grichuk and Stephen Piscotty in the outfield with Matt Holliday. 

With one of the majors’ best pitching staffs mostly returning for 2016, it might seem odd that the Cardinals are seeking more pitching help instead of improving the offense. Should the Cardinals miss out on adding another pitcher, they would have no problem working with the pitching already on the roster.

"A lot of people are trying to tie us to every other starter out there, but that’s not the case. We are going to do what makes sense. We are certainly not afraid to start the season with (Tyler) Lyons, (Tim) Cooney or Marco Gonzales competing for that fifth spot," Mozeliak But having said that, if there is something that makes sense, we want to pursue that."

The Cardinals might be down, but much like their play on the field, they are certainly not out when it comes to the offseason game.

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