The Cardinal Nation blog

Brian Walton's news and commentary on the St. Louis Cardinals (TM) and their minor league system

Cardinals minor matters – January 22


Glaus surprise shoulder surgery held

The Cardinals announced Thursday that third baseman Troy Glaus underwent arthroscopic surgery on Wednesday, January 21 for the debridement of his right shoulder.  The surgery was performed by Dr. Lewis Yocum in Los Angeles, California.  Glaus will begin physical therapy next week and his recovery is estimated by the club to be 12 weeks.

The late timing of the surgery in the off-season means Glaus will miss at least the first two weeks of the regular season. That opens the door for a pair of third base prospects, David Freese and Brett Wallace, to compete for a first-time ever MLB roster spot. Outfielder Joe Mather is also scheduled to see time at third base during spring training and though primarily a middle infielder, Brendan Ryan can also play there.

GM John Mozeliak will meet with the press this afternoon to answer the obvious question, “Why now?” Glaus just returned from last weekend’s Winter Warm-up, where there was no indication of injury or impending surgery.

Update: The Post-Dispatch reports Glaus had been troubled by the shoulder since last season and rest was prescribed. His discomfort returned as he began preparations for 2009 and he informed the club several weeks ago. A recent injection did not help, so surgery was set.


Templeton Golden again

The Long Beach (CA) Armada of the independent Golden Baseball League announced that former Cardinals shortstop Garry Templeton will return to the league as manager of their team for the 2009 season. A former skipper in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League (2001-02), Templeton also managed in the GBL from 2005-2007.



Laying down the prospect Law

In a Wednesday ESPN Insider article, baseball analyst Keith Law ranks the Cardinals’ system number six of the 30 MLB organizations. Comments are positive about three top “star” prospects, which include Colby Rasmus (#12), Brett Wallace (#19 – pictured) and Daryl Jones (#50). Chris Perez also made the list at #80. System depth and impact are complemented.

I did see one other thing worth noting. Law seems very excited about the (#1) Rangers’ integration of amateur, professional and international scouting along with their baseball operations staffs. He notes the Red Sox (#7) and Rays (#2) have also gone down this path. In what seems an oversight, Jeff Luhnow and the Cardinals are not mentioned, however.

Law’s remaining top 100 prospects have now been posted, with prospects #1-25 free and the remainder subscriber-only content, providing a welcome diversion during an increasingly-tedious off-season.

I’ll update this section later if I have anything more to say after seeing Law’s full descriptions.


Jay McGwire
squeals for cash

I had already posted this link on the La Russa/Mc Gwire thread, but wanted to call it out here, as well.

I’m not a fan of Deadspin’s brand of internet “journalism”, especially after they had to recant their slanderous steroid accusations against Albert Pujols’ trainer that therefore indirectly implicated Albert.

Now they have another Cards-related ‘roids story – this one about Mark McGwire’s brother Jay’s proposed new book. The estranged little brother and body builder seems to be in a debate with Jose Canseco over who injected Big Mac first.

It’s really sad what people will do for money…


Legends camp tightening security

Although I can’t imagine why other than the possibility of autograph hound control perhaps, the annual Cardinals Legends Camp being held this weekend in Jupiter, is being closed to the public. Family members will still be allowed, but that is it, according to the TC Palm.

The Mets’ nearby camp, running in parallel to the Cards’, is open to all, although I would imagine the over-30 fantasy campers themselves are not the attraction. Instead it would be the former major leaguers invited to coach.

For the Cardinals, the invitees included Lou Brock, Whitey Herzog, Jack Clark, Danny Cox, Ken Dayley, Bob Forsch, Tom Herr, Rick Horton, Al Hrabosky, Mike LaValliere, Dave LaPoint, Tom Lawless, John Mabry, Ted Savage, Scott Terry, and Todd Worrell. Of course, since camp is closed, we may not know which ones showed up!

For those considering this splurge next year, the prices this time around ranged from $4,295-$7,495 for five days of action. More info here.


Crusin’ again?

Another annual event that occurs after Winter Warm-up and Spring Training is the Cardinals Cruise. This year, the sold-out event departs from Ft. Lauderdale on February 1 and returns on the 8th. 2010 information is not yet available but I am told by the folks at Altair Travel and Cruises that their brochures will be available in one month.


Wainwright/Pence win Darryl Kile Awards

Over at Scout.com, I saluted Adam Wainwright, this year’s winner of a rarely-noted, but most important piece of recognition voted upon by Cardinals players and run by the local Baseball Writers of Association Chapter, the Darryl Kile Award.

The Astros also initiated a similar “Good Guy” Award upon Kile’s passing with their first winner being his former Houston teammate Jeff Bagwell. This past weekend, outfielder Hunter Pence took their 2009 honor.


Vuch picks up award

Speaking of good guys, MLB.com’s recap of Monday’s St. Louis Baseball Writers Dinner mentioned another award winner, Cardinals Director of Minor League Operations John Vuch. He was given the Harry Mitauer Good Guy Award – a most appropriate choice.

“I would have been flattered if they just told me my name came up in the conversation, let alone being the recipient,” Matthew Leach reported the humble and talented Vuch as saying.

Congratulations, John!


Liga Paralela results

For those interested in the how the Cardinals recruits fared this winter in the Liga Paralela in Venezuela, check out Josh Jones’ series of detailed reports over at Cardinals Best News Links. He has covered the hitters so far, with the pitchers up next. This is information you can’t get anywhere else.

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