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2023 Player Outlook

Across 128 games with the Cards last year, Carlson hit eight home runs, stole five bases, and slashed .236/.316/.380 with a .306 wOBA and 2.4 WAR. The home run numbers may not have translated, but he now has back-to-back seasons with 30+ doubles, and perhaps a little bit more hard contact, and Carlson can start providing fantasy managers with more respectable power numbers. To his credit, he provides solid defense, highlighted by his 84th percentile outs above average metric, and 88th percentile arm strength. Despite being a switch hitter, Carlson really struggled against right-handed pitching last year, posting a .633 OPS against them. Carlson is a fine player in reality, and he’s young with plenty of room for growth. However, the Cardinals have two solid prospects in the outfield (Alec Burleson, and Jordan Walker) that have a legitimate chance to break camp with the team, but Carlson is the only true center field on this team, which should help him a bit, not to mention his above average defense. I have my concerns about Carlson’s bat, but 10-12 home runs with a .250 average and 5-8 stolen bases seem like a safe projection.

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