Cardinals Continue to Add to Rotation, Sign Kyle Gibson

Kyle Gibson of the St. Louis Cardinals

One day after the Cardinals inked Lance Lynn to a one-year, St. Louis picked up another veteran starter on a short-term contract. Kyle Gibson, who spent 2023 with the Orioles, is headed to the St. Louis Cardinals on a one-year deal worth $12M and a club option for 2025. Here’s a closer look at what Gibson did last season.

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A Look at Gibson

The Orioles signed right-hander Kyle Gibson last winter, after an up-and-down stretch with the Philadelphia Phillies.

Gibson started out the year atop the O’s rotation but didn’t finish there thanks to the emergence of young starters Kyle Bradish and Grayson Rodriguez. Still, the 36-year-old proved to be an innings-eater for an Orioles team that won 101 games last season.

Gibson finished the 2023 campaign with a 4.73 ERA (4.13 FIP) with 157 strikeouts over 192 IP, the latter of which led the Orioles. The new Cardinal also finished the year with a slightly above-average Whiff% (25.3%) rate and a near-50% GB% rate.

Kyle Gibson whiff chart 2023
Gibson can pound the zone with the sinker, then play it off with either the changeup to his arm side or the sweeper glove side. His sweeper had a Whiff% rate of 46.7% last season, a pitch used almost exclusively against right-handed hitters.

However, Gibson didn’t make a start in the 2023 MLB Playoffs — he did throw three innings of relief in Game 3 of the ALDS and gave up one run — despite the fact he was Baltimore’s Opening Day starter.

The 36-year-old didn’t overpower hitters in 2023, nor has he throughout his career. Rather, he’s been a steady hand who excels at getting ground balls with his sinker and swings-and-misses with either the changeup, cutter or more recently, a low-80s sweeper.

Kyle Gibson cutter
Despite a .345 total batting average against the cutter in 2023, LHH opposing batters made either weak or flared contact 62 times off it last season. That ranked ninth-most among RHP in the MLB last season.

The new Cardinals pitcher and 2021 All-Star has been a durable pitcher throughout his career. Not to mention, he’s also been adept at giving teams length. Gibson’s had eight 150+ inning seasons since 2014. And out of the 33 starters he made in 2023, Gibson went at least six in 19 of them.

As mentioned earlier, it’s a one-year for Gibson. He also received a club option worth $12MM for 2025.


As we noted on November 20 when the Cardinals signed starter Lance Lynn, St. Louis didn’t get much from their rotation last season. And, St. Louis prior to the Lynn signing only had two starters with a high chance of being in the 2024 rotation: Steven Matz and Miles Mikolas.

The Cardinals needed bodies for the rotation heading into the offseason. St. Louis added two veterans thus far in Gibson and Lynn.

Gibson, much like Lynn, isn’t a #1 starter by any means. Rather, the veteran starter’s a #4 or a #5 that can eat innings and give the Cardinals length.