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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: 03/19/13

On Tuesday, the St. Louis Cardinals minor leaguers once again faced their Jupiter, Fla. cohabitants, the Miami Marlins. The Fish swam over to the Birds’ side of the complex – except for those go-against-the-flow Peoria 2 soldiers, who marched over to the Miami fields.

Memphis was the only one of the five Cardinals clubs to log a win. Springfield tied while the three Class-A clubs all lost. Peoria 2 was one-hit. The Cardinals’ spring record against external minor league competition fell to 6-11-6.

As he has been doing the last few seasons, Cardinals farm director John Vuch is sharing game stats. As always, the raw numbers are his, but the comments and players of the day are mine.

Tuesday’s Player of the Day: For as long as I have been doing these reports, I have never seen a player as hot as David Washington. My Player of the Day for Tuesday (and Monday and Sunday) went 3-for-4 with a home run and two RBI. Over the past three days, the Peoria 1 first baseman is 9-for-12 (.750) with three home runs, a triple, six RBI and four runs scored.

Tuesday’s Pitcher of the Day: Former Notre Dame hurler Steven Sabatino fanned four and allowed just one hit in two innings of work for Peoria 2. After being selected in the 26th round last June, the left-hander pitched just 7 1/3 innings for Johnson City.

The Cardinal Nation subscribers can check out spring training working rosters, the full minor league spring schedule and more.

The entire system view by level and position is available via the Roster Matrix, free, right here at The Cardinal Nation Blog.

Memphis 5, New Orleans 1

Memphis pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Memphis hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Richard Castillo 3 2 0 1 3 Amazingly still just 23 years of age Colin Walsh 5 2 Only 2nd to Oscar with .934 OPS last season
Nick Greenwood 2 1 0 3 Strong outing for left-hander Tommy Pham 5 1 2 1 1 An exciting player when healthy
Keith Butler 2 2 1 2 Just returned from MLB camp (13.50 ERA) Chris Edmondson 3 1 2
Eric Fornataro 2 1 0 3 Only one run allowed in six spring innings with StL Mike O’Neill 2 1 1 .458 OBP led system in 2012
Jamie Romak 3 2 1 2 Almost 3600 PAs in 10 minor league seasons
Brock Peterson 1 1 Could be Memphis’ 1B with Adams in St.Louis
Chris Swauger 1 1
Chad Huffman 1 1 1 2006 2nd round  draft pick of San Diego
Juan Castillo 2 1

Springfield 5, Jacksonville 5

Springfield pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Springfield hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Anthony Ferrara 3 7 5 3 A day to forget James Ramsey 4 1 2 Had 104 points of OBP over BA in 2012
Boone Whiting 3 2 0 3 7 one-hit IP in Springfield’s final playoff game win Neal Pritchard 3 2 1 1 Had 107 points of OBP over BA in 2013
Ramon Delgado 2 1 0 A long road back from injury – ony 10 IP in last two years Adam Melker 2 1 1 .755 OPS with Springfield last season
Jorge Rondon 2 0 0 0 2 Pitching below level, but solid results Jesus Montero 1 1
Tyler Rahmatulla 1
Matt Williams 5 1 4th in hits in the system (141) in 2012
Nick Longmire 1

Jupiter 7, Palm Beach 1

Palm Beach pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Palm Beach hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Dail Villanueva 3 4 2 1 2 10th in system with 95 Ks last season Carson Kelly 3 2 1 10th-ranked Cardinals prospect for 2013
Lee Stoppelman 2 4 3 1 2 Run of impressive spring outings broken Ildemaro Vargas 3 2 3rd in Appalachian League with .322 average in 2012
Jose Almarante 2 4 2 Adam Ehrlich 3 1 1 1 Had big-league camp invite
Brandon Creath 1 0 1 Last name rhymes with “breath” – short “e”, silent “a” Matt Young 3 1 1 1
Mike Aldrete 1 0 1 2 Underrated spring performances continue

Greensboro 5, Peoria1 2

Peoria 1 pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Peoria 1 hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Kurt Heyer 2.2 6 2 Plus 2 unearned runs Charlie Tilson 1 Missed all of 2012 due to injury
Juan Bautista 2 0 0 0 2 David Washington 4 1 3 2 1 An unbelievable stretch
Zach Petrick 2 2 0 1 One unearned run Michael Swinson 3 1 1 1 Time to make up after only 92 at-bats last season
Stalyn Lopez 1 1 0 1 Fanned 43, but walked 33 in 42 2/3 Innings with JC David Popkins 3 1 1
Joe Scanio 1 0 1 St. Louis native was 16th round pick in 2012 Trevor Martin 3 1 1 .802 OPS at JC last season

Marlins 5th team 1, Peoria2 0

Peoria 2 pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Peoria 2 hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Hansel DeLosSantos 3 2 0 1 1 Jhohan Acevedo 3 1 Batted .317 in 2012 Gulf Coast League
Mitch Harris 2 2 1 1 3 Ex-Navy man building up his arm strength Brett Wiley 1 One stolen base
Steve Sabatino 2 1 0 4 26th rounder from Notre Dame had only 7 1/3 IP for JC Kenny Peoples-Walls 1 Ditto
Thomas Lee 2 1 0 1 9.99 strikouts per nine innings last season
Sam Tuivailala 1 1 1 1 1 Pitched a 10th inning after the game

Wednesday brings yet another camp day, when the Cardinals clubs will face off against one another while the Marlins and Mets engage elsewhere.

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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14 Responses to “Cardinals minor league spring training notebook: 03/19/13”

  1. JumboShrimp says:

    IIRC, Washington was basket-baller from the San Diego area, not heralded as a baseball amateur. Part of our amazingly good, game-changing 2009 draft, picked ahead of Anthony Garcia, Trevor Rosenthal, and Matt Adams. Because Washington was a diamond in the rough, he has been soldiering away, 2 summers in the GCL, 1 at Johnson City, last summer at Batavia, where his OPS was above 800, but the Ks were unacceptably high. If he can tighten the swing to reduce the whiffs, he could land in the money. At 6″5″, 230+, if Washington can just make contact, the ball will carry. He should get tutoring from Matt Adams whose swing is a work of art. OF Matt Kemp with the Dodgers was a high school basket-baller who found his way to the money. Maybe Washington can do the same. He will play in Peoria.

  2. blingboy says:

    Don’t get too excited yet Jumbo. George had three years vs short season pitching and still struck out way to much. Lets see how he plays in Peoria.

    • blingboy says:

      Make that 4 years

      • JumboShrimp says:

        Make that David rather than POTUS 1

        • JumboShrimp says:

          McCovey used to strike out back in the day, but he became a fearsome hitter.

          We once almost shelled out $3.2MM for 16 year old Wagner Mateo, because he a powerful left swinger. How does Washington compare? Since American, there is not a competitive market for labor services, bonuses are team controlled. Washington may have been signed around $100K, a much better value. He has filled out the 6’5″ frame as would be expected.

          Whereas Adams had 3 years of small college ball, Washington turned pro at an earlier age, foregoing college. Right now, Washington is a little further along on the pro ladder than if he had gone to college for 3 years. Washington is a good place in his development and ready to tackle the Midwest League.

  3. blingboy says:

    Any bets on whether Roberto De La Cruz ends up with the Luhnows?

    • Brian Walton says:

      I’d take that bet. What may have seemed like a good idea in 2008 is much less so today.

    • JumboShrimp says:

      I will guess Houston would want to sign De La Cruz. When he signed as an amateur, he was rated 180 pounds, now he is 6’2, 230, a powerful guy who slugged 16 HRs at short season Johnson City. At 16, he looked like a 3B man, whereas as he has grown, he evolved to 1B/LF. We gave up on this kid based on 2012, one year. This may be sufficient grounds, but another team could accept that he is not a failed 3Bman, just suited to 1B. Another team could give him another year to adjust to low A pitching, because his next signing bonus is no longer $1.1MM, but very low, so it can be a low cost experiment. Given batting practice power, why not?

      • Brian Walton says:

        Why not? Because organizations are busy evaluating their own guys right now. It is a very difficult time for anyone to hook on, let alone a guy yet unable to make the jump to full-season ball and who has no position defensively. My guess is that if De La Cruz continues to play, he will need to go to indy ball. If he proves himself there, he can hope to earn another affiliated contract later. The only reason he is being talked about now is a big contract given five long years ago. He has done little on the field to justify this much attention. Have you seen Ryde Rodriguez lately?

        • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

          Don’t forget which pocket that “signing bonus” money came out of. That stunt came to an abrupt end. I wonder why?

        • JumboShrimp says:

          Ryde did not hit 16 HRs in a short season at Johnson City as recently as 2011. Ryde did not have the power to suit a power position like 1B or LF, whereas Roberto has shown this, so might be worth a low cost gamble. Jeff Luhnow and associates know the personnel with the Cards well very well, and they inherited a talent starved system. So they might give Roberto another chance. I will bet that they do.

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