Report: Cardinals showing interest in Marlins' Yelich, Ozuna

by
Jeff Curry / USA TODAY Sports

The St. Louis Cardinals could be on the verge of a massive overhaul in the outfield. As the July 31 trade deadline inches closer, the Cardinals aren't out of the postseason race, but they still sit three games under .500 and need to right the ship.

An attempt to do so may involve a pitch for Miami Marlins outfielders Christian Yelich and/or Marcell Ozuna, according to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand.

Feinsand adds that the Marlins sent a top executive to scout Cardinals Double-A pitcher - and former first-round pick - Dakota Hudson in his last start. The Cardinals have a fair amount of pitching prospect capital between Hudson, Jack Flaherty, and Luke Weaver, among others, and the asking price would be presumably high on both sides of the table.

Both Ozuna and Yelich are under affordable, long-term team control, adding appeal and value in a trade. Ozuna isn't a free agent until 2020, and Yelich signed an extension in 2015 that doesn't expire until after 2021, with a $15-million team option for the following season.

Ozuna made his second consecutive National League All-Star team this season, and has blasted 23 home runs, matching his career high. Yelich hasn't been as dynamic, but he's batting .288/.364/.412 with eight home runs and 18 doubles.

The Cardinals' outfield has not been consistently healthy, and has underwhelmed, otherwise. Tommy Pham has been the best hitter, batting .306/.390/.514.

What a trade for either or both of the Marlins pieces would mean for Pham, Stephen Piscotty, and Randal Grichuk remains to be seen. Considering the contract given to Dexter Fowler in the offseason, it seems unlikely that his role would change drastically. But such a move would not have implications isolated to this season, but for seasons to come.