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

Cardinals minor league spring training notebook: 03/28

On Wednesday, the St. Louis Cardinals’ had yet another Camp Day during which their clubs faced each other on the back quad on the Roger Dean Stadium complex, named in memory of the late George Kissell.

Springfield and Palm Beach claimed wins on the day. The Cardinals’ spring record against external minor league competition remains 15-13-4.

Wednesday’s Player of the Day: Cuban native Amaury Cazana had another standout performance with three extra-base hits in three at-bats for Memphis.

Wednesday’s Pitcher of the Day: Left-hander Logan Billbrough, 22, fanned four in two scoreless innings for Palm Beach. The 2011 free agent signee had a 1.72 ERA in the regular season and a 2.25 playoff ERA for Johnson City last year.

As he has been doing the last few seasons, Cardinals farm director John Vuch is sharing game stats with this site and several others with interest in Cardinals prospects. As always, the raw numbers are his, but the comments mine.

On Thursday, the Cardinals’ five minor league clubs will face their Miami Marlins counterparts for the final time of the spring. The games will be held on the Marlins side of the Roger Dean Stadium complex.

The Cardinal Nation subscribers can check out the full minor league schedule and spring training working rosters. The entire system view by level and position is available via the Roster Matrix, right here at The Cardinal Nation Blog.

Springfield 6, Memphis 4

Memphis pitching IP H ER BB K Notes
Joe Kelly 5 4 1 0 3 Plus one unearned run from our #18 prospect
Barrett Browning 1 0 0 0 0 LHR is Rule 5 addition from Angels
R.J. Swindle 1 1 0 0 1 Career 1.97 minors ERA is best in MiLB from 04-11
Adam Ottavino 0.1 3 3 Plus one unearned run – rough outing to say the least

Memphis hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Amaury Cazana 3 1 3 3 2 1 Extra-base power demonstrated
Pete Kozma 3 3 Perfect day
Mark Hamilton 2 2 .439 OBP for Memphis in 2011
Sam Tuivailala 2 1 Improved BA 75 points over 2010, but OBP flat
Roberto Espinoza 1 1

Springfield pitching IP H ER BB K Notes
Chris Corrigan 2 1 0 1 Finished 15 games with two saves in 11 (QC + PB)
Nick Greenwood 1 3 1 1 Was part of Jake Westbrook – Ryan Ludwick trade
Adam Reifer 2 3 2 2 2 Back on the rollercoaster
Keith Butler 1 1 1 1 1 46 G pitched in 2011 ranked 7th in system
Jorge Rondon 1.2 1 0 1 33 walks against 30 strikeouts at Springfield in 11

Springfield hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Greg Garcia 4 1 2 1 1 Candidate for breakout player of the year
Xavier Scruggs 4 2 Hot hitter has five hits in two days
Jermaine Curtis 3 1 1 Had career-best year with bat at Springfield in 11
Audry Perez 3 1 1 Catcher has promise, but has been inconsistent
Gary Apelian 1 1 2 1 7 hits tops in 2011 Appy League playoffs
Nick Derba 1 1

Palm Beach 5, Quad Cities 1

Palm Beach pitching IP H ER BB K Notes
Dean Kiekhefer 2 1 0 1 Lefty had 0.90 ERA in 25 2nd half appearances in 11
Justin Wright 1.1 4 1 1 Career ERA is 0.90 so runs against him are rare
Travis Miller 2 1 0 1 Led 2011 NY-Penn League with seven holds
Logan Billbrough 2 1 0 4 9.77 baserunners/9 IP was #2 among Appy relievers

Palm Beach hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Starlin Rodriguez 3 1 2 1 Our #27-ranked prospect
Nick Longmire 1 1
Ronny Gil 1 1
Travis Tartamella 2 1 1 1 1 Batted just .152 in 15 G Springfield intro in 2011
Jonathan Rodriguez 1 1 OPS of 1.112 in 2011 MWL playoffs
Vance Albitz 1 Added a sacrifice bunt

Quad Cities pitching IP H ER BB K Notes
Ryan Sherriff 3 2 1 2 Two unearned runs
Iden Nazario 2 0 2 54 Ks in 44 1/3 IP, but also 29 BB
Robert Stock 2 2 1 1 Every outing will be closely analyzed
Yunier Castillo 2 3 1 1 1 Only nine official pro innings pitched to date

Quad Cities hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Roberto De La Cruz 3 2 Signed for $1.1 million in 2008
Juan Castillo 3 1 Has been in system since 2006
Virgil Hill 3 1 Batted .183 in 37 G Quad Cities tryout in 2011
Roberto Reyes 3 1 .237 average for Batavia last season
Nick Martini 3 1 1
Matt Williams 2 1 .845 OPS for Johnson City champs in 2011

Subscribers to the main site, TheCardinalNation.com, should continue to check out my extensive spring training content over the upcoming days.

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32 Responses to “Cardinals minor league spring training notebook: 03/28”

  1. blingboy says:

    For some reason I envisioned getting transitioned to pitcher as something besides you get handed the ball and sent out there tomorrow. That is how it went for Stock. I’ve noticed he hasn’t been geting his head handed to him.

  2. blingboy says:

    I guess Marte is out of the picture now that Linebrink has filled the 40th spot on the roster. Can’t see what he has to prove at AAA. Maybe he’s supposed to get 40 saves.

    • Brian Walton says:

      Marte isn’t a prospect; he is an organizational guy. Good to have as a steady closer at Memphis, but if we see him in StL, it will be because of a run of unforeseen problems.

      • JumboShrimp says:

        Let me offer a more optimistic case about Marte.

        Marte could be like our old pal, Al Reyes. Reyes was a journeyman reliever from the Dominican who had brushes with the majors, but never broke through. Since the Cards were short of pitchers circa 2005, they gave Reyes a chance. He was a big part of the 2006 season, though injured in late September. He re-habbed and later pitched for the Rays, IIRC, making some money.

        Its not just US teams that sign Dominicans, but one or two Japanese teams as well. I think Reyes may have been first signed from amateur ranks by a Japanese team. In any event, he wound up in Japan for some years. He had a couple of brief chances with the Royals, I think it was, but did not become established. Just because a guy is circa 31 like Marte, this does not mean he does not have talent, as shown by such role models or Ryan Franklin, who only reached the majors circa 28+.

        Marte pitched very well for Memphis last year. He pitched better than Linebrink this spring, no surprise. Linebrink has plenty of ML experience, so its also no surprise the Cards would select the guy who is more established.

        But if some relievers become injured or do not perform well, Marte could very well get a call up during 2012. Matheny paid him a compliment by keeping him around until the last cuts. This sends a signal to Marte that if he continues to dominate at AAA, he can earn another shot at the Show.

  3. crdswmn says:

    Beltran hit a solo homerun, batting second. Holliday followed by getting on base. Freese hit a single. Batting 5th, that would have been two runs, batting 6th it would have been 3.

    I know it’s only ST but I am warming up for my regular season bitching.

    • Brian Walton says:

      I believe Beltran is going to see a lot of fat pitches batting just ahead of Holliday, who I think may be in line for an MVP-caliber season.

      When you were away, did you read my saber-analysis of the batting order? (subscriber article on the main site) I assume either you didn’t or you don’t agree. You (and your editor) were my direct inspiration. ;-)

      • crdswmn says:

        I read it. I don’t have enough saber knowledge to either agree or disagree. While I respect the sabermetrics, I don’t think they should be the sole criteria used for making decisions, though they should definitely play a part. All I know is that my spidey sense tells me that Beltran should not be batting second with his power and RBI potential. My spidey sense has been berry, berry good to me and I stick with it. My editor happens to agree with me, but even if he didn’t, it wouldn’t change my mind.

  4. crdswmn says:

    Descalso is playing 1B now. Has he ever played there before?

  5. WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

    Great game with Anaheim and KC ……………… 6hr in the first 2 innings………. AP really is starting to lead that team by example………………. they can rake ………………. fascinating story line in that one……. KC leading 7 zip with 3 jacks……………. Angels go back to back to back ……. and then KC pitcher drill the next Angel …………………. Almost had a brawl ………….. now they’re in a dog fight at 5 to 7………….

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