Ironically the Rox beat writer had posted a piece on each franchise's worst ever trade not that long before the Arenado trade (which sounds like it will be his new worst for the Rox)
This will bring the Cards up to 4 franchises for whom they were the beneficiaries of their worst trade (Padres, Cubs, Rox, and Angels)
The Cardinals’ worst trade was Carlton which landed us 11th on his list.
The other trade that tends to get mentions as the worst ever for the Cardinals was the 12/12/1903 trade of Mordecai Brown and Jack O’Neill to the Cubs for Larry McLean and Jack Taylor. Anytime you deal a hall of famer and don’t get one back, its not going to be pretty, but on further review it wasn’t that horrible. (I mean Its not exactly the Gridbirds dealing Ollie Matson)
Brown posted 48.1 WAR over 9 season with the Cubs going 186-83 with an average ERA+ of 162 over that time frame on his way to the hall of fame. They released him in 1912. O’Neill added 0.1 WAR over 2 seasons.
Taylor put up 12.5 WAR over 2.5 seasons with the Cards. They then dealt him back to the Cubs for Fred Beebe and Pete Noonan.
Beebe pitched 4 very consistently mediocre seasons for the Cards with ERA+ of 86, 91, 89, and 89 and totaling 3.8 WAR before being dealt with Alan Storke for Frank Corridon, the aptly named Rebel Oakes, and Miller Huggins. This deal was mentioned in the recent ‘best trades in Cardinal’s history’ post being edged for 10th place by the Tudor trade.
The Reds netted -.2 WAR.
Oakes played CF for 4 seasons totaling 2.5 WAR then ‘jumped to the Pittsburgh Rebels’ which sounds like destiny. Huggins manned second for a little over 6 seasons (17.9 WAR) and managed from 1913-7. Corridon subtracted .1 WAR.
So the net on the Three Finger deal 48.2 WAR out 36.7 back.