The Cardinal Nation blog

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

Cardinals minor league spring training notebook: 03/30/13

On Saturday, the St. Louis Cardinals’ minor leaguers faced the Miami Marlins clubs for the sixth and final time this spring. It is also the last day for competition in Florida. The games were held on the Miami side of the Jupiter complex. In addition, Extended Spring Training Red faced the White squad.

It was another clean sweep day, as all four Cardinals clubs won. Memphis and Peoria logged shutouts. Also, Red defeated White. After the 4-0 day, the Cardinals’ spring record against external minor league competition finishes at 27-19-7.

Whereas in recent days, minor leaguers played in the major league game, the reverse occurred on Saturday. Shelby Miller, the newly-crowned fifth starter for St. Louis, did not accompany his new teammates to Phoenix. First, the right-hander pitched four innings for Memphis as noted below.

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. Special thanks go out to the organization, as without their cooperation, these reports would not be possible.

Saturday’s Pitcher of the Day: It isn’t Miller, as he is a major leaguer now. Over five innings, Palm Beach’s Sam Gaviglio (pictured) yielded just one hit and one walk. The right-hander fanned four. One unearned run scored during his stint.

Saturday’s Player of the Day: Springfield’s Chris Swauger had a walk, single and two doubles in five plate appearances. The outfielder drove in two and scored twice.

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

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

Memphis (11-5-1) 1, New Orleans 0

Memphis stats

Memphis pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Memphis hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Shelby Miller 4.2 4 0 1 7 Tuning up for his new role in StL rotation Jermaine Curtis 3 2 1 Should be the regular 3B starter
Jorge Rondon 0.1 1 0 1 Began spring in big-league camp Greg Garcia 3 1 1 1 Just down from Major League camp in final cuts
Eric Fornataro 1 0 2 Allowed just 1 HR in 271 batters faced last season Chad Huffman 1 Played in final StL spring game
Barret Browning 1 2 0 1.73 ERA with Memphis last year Brock Peterson 1

Springfield (7-7-3) 10, Jacksonville 6

Springfield stats

Springfield pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Springfield hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
John Gast 5 8 2 4 Should be returning to Memphis rotation Chris Swauger 4 2 3 2 2 1 Had brief Memphis intro but likely back to Springfield
Kevin Siegrist 0.2 3 4 1 1 Rough day for starter-turned-reliever Tommy Pham 5 2 2 2 2 Always had the talent – all he needs is health
Deryk Hooker 1 1 1 Audry Perez 5 2 Closest catching prospect to the majors
Michael Blazek 1 3 How much better could he do? Starlin Rodriguez 5 2 1 All-star talent in Florida State League last season
Keith Butler 1 Successful Springfield closer back again Travis Tartamella 1 1 Should be Perez’ back up this season
Adam Melker 4 2 2 2 1 1 .755 OPS in 126 Springfield games in 2012
Xavier Scruggs 3 2 1 1 2 Like many of the others, looks to repeat Double-A
Mike O’Neill 3 1 1 Strong Sprf intro in last month after FSL batting title win
Luis Mateo 1

Palm Beach (9-4-3) 9, Jupiter 4

Palm Beach stats

Palm Beach pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Palm Beach hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Sam Gaviglio 5 1 0 1 4 Plus one unearned run David Popkins 2 3 2 1 2 .725 OPS after moving up to Batavia mid-short season
Kevin Thomas 2 2 2 2 Stephen Piscotty 3 1 2 2 Drove in 27 in first 55 pro games with Quad Cities
Brandon Creath 1 2 1 1 12.95 K / 9 IP led Florida State League in 2012 Matt Williams 1 1 1
Dixon Llorens 1 0 1 Fanned 44.3% of all batters faced last season Cody Stanley 2 1 1 2 1 1 Among handful of C prospect at high end of system
Ronnie Shaban 1 0 Led Appy League with 16 saves last season Geoff Klein 4 1 1 1 Can play 1B as well as catch
Tyler Rahmatulla 4 1 1 2 1 Great hitting at QC, but dropped off at PG
Ronny Gil 2 1 1
Danny Stienstra 1 2 20 RBI in 40 games mostly in NYPL in 2012

Peoria (5-9-1) 5, Greensboro 0

Peoria stats

Peoria pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Peoria hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Joe Cuda 5 5 0 3 1.24 WHIP last season ranked in system top 10 Patrick Wisdom 5 3 2 2 Player of the Day on Thursday and Friday
Josh Renfro 1 1 0 Breyvic Valera 2 1 1 2nd in 2012 NYPL with 118 total bases
Zach Petrick 2 0 1 2 2.17 ERA last season as swingman for JC in 2012 David Washington 1 1
Joey Donofrio 1 0 1 Fanned at least one hitter in all 14 relief outings in 2012 Ildemaro Vargas 1 1 1
Gerwuins Velazco 3 1 1 1 .500 OBP day!

Extended Spring Training Red 4, EST White 1

EST Red stats

Extended Red pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Extended Red hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Anthony Ferrara 6 4 0 3 7 Springfield P ust have dropped down this low to get work Jesus Montero 2 1 1 1 1 Catcher and third baseman each had solo homers
Stalyn Lopez 1 0 2 1 Carson Kelly 3 1 1 1 1 Ditto
Thomas Lee 1 0 Walked just 9 batters in 51 1/3 IP with JC last season Ronald Castillo 2 1 1 1
Steven Sabatino 1 2 1 2 Brett Wiley 2 1 1 1
Jem Argenal 3 1
C.J.McElroy 1
Cesar Valera 1 1

EST White stats

Extended White pitching IP H ER BB K Notes Extended White hitting AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB Notes
Hector Hernandez 5 5 3 1 8 Started 24 games for Quad Cities last season Yoenny Gonzalez 4 1 2 Switch-hitter was 14 for 17 in stolen bases at GCL
Willy Paulino 2 0 2 85 K / 47 BB in 83.2 IP between JC and QC Trevor Martin 3 2 1 2 1 IF had an .802 OPS at Johnson City last season
Max Foody 1 2 1 1 Walked 16 in 16 1/3 GCL innings in 2012 pro debut Amaury Capellan 3 1 1
Lenadro Mateo 1

On Sunday, the Cardinals minor leaguers complete their spring training with an abbreviated day consisting of a light workout in Jupiter, before heading to their new destinations. The ones not making one of the four full-season clubs will remain behind in extended spring training.

Subscribers to the main site,, should continue to check out our extensive spring training content.

Follow me on Twitter.
Follow The Cardinal Nation Blog on Facebook.

Follow me

Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
Follow me

25 Responses to “Cardinals minor league spring training notebook: 03/30/13”

  1. DT-Flush says:

    Given Gaviglio is a sinkerball-groundball pitcher. Any idea of how many groundouts he induced in this outings?

  2. JumboShrimp says:

    Has Ryan Jackson really fallen lower than Jermaine Curtis? This is unlikely.

    The Cards want Jackson to collect another year of AAA experience. Also they do not want the Post Dispatch reporters and others to undercut our SS starter, Pete Kozma, by clamoring for Jackson. This would not be fair for Pete, who has enough on his plate as a rookie handling a tough job. Hence the Cards have buried Jackson this spring, to keep him out of the limelight.

    If Wong were not ready to play at Memphis, Jackson could slide over and spend a second AAA season at 2B. This is what happened in 2012 with Pete. We cant do the same thing with Ryan. Thus we will move Ryan Jackson to 3B. Curtis can become a AAA utility guy, playing all around.

    So this is one thing to look for, to consider Jackson’s true standing. Is he a real no-hoper, lower than even Curtis as a prospect? Or is he a faux no-hoper, merely downvalued by the Cards for the short run, to help Kozma? He is probably the the latter, but this is something to watch for.

    The Cards could have kept Aldron Chambers as a reserve owing to Freese’s injury. Chambers played well enough during the playoffs in 2011. He had a good second season at AAA in 2012. However, the Cards did select Jackson to stay with the ML team as Freese’s backfill. They did not need to do this, having Descalso, Carpenter, and Old Wiggy who can play 3B. This is a positive sign toward Jackson that he was selected over Chambers, a mini-reward.

    The next sign will be whether Jackson plays regularly at AAA again, as he did in 2012, or whether he is benched behind a near non-prospect in Curtis.

    • Brian Walton says:

      Regarding Curtis, I guess you think I just make things up when they do not align with your perceived reality. Curtis earned his promotion. Had Oscar not been there, Curtis would have won the TL batting title.

      Regarding Jackson, they need an infielder in St. Louis for a short term assignment. He is the only one already on the 40-man.

      The real, non-fantasy explanations are very simple.

      • JumboShrimp says:

        Simple additional factors:
        Jackson has been a regular at A, AA, and AAA levels during the past 3 years, 2010-12. As such, he received 1,500 or more at bats. In contrast, Curtis has been given less than 1,000 at bats, over the same three year span. The Cards have given priority to Jackson’s development.
        Though Curtis turned pro earlier (08 vs 09), Jackson who has already been a AAA regular for a year. Jackson overtook Curtis by only one year at AA while the latter was spending parts of three seasons there.
        At the minor league baseball page for Springfield 2012, Curtis is identified as a DH, suggesting he spent some time DHing. He is a handy guy for a roster, if he can play some 3B, 2B, SS, LF, etc.
        Curtis has not been selected for the Baseball America Top 30 for the Cards, whereas Jackson has been so selected.
        MLB scouting bureau reports were high on Jackson coming out of high school in 2006 and out of college in 2009. Curtis less so.
        I have no objection to the idea Curtis could win the 3B job for Memphis. While I doubt it, its not impossible.
        Last September, Domeboys was frustrated Jackson did not get more playing time versus Kozma. This was and remains an interesting question. I am still upbeat about Jackson for 2014.

        • Brian Walton says:

          What I would do and what the organization plans to do are not always the same. Then again, they have much more information from which to make their decisions. I realize that, even when I might disagree personally.

          I cannot think of a single example when they told me something about the minor leagues that was blatantly untrue, however.

          • JumboShrimp says:

            I am not sure the Cards have to be blatantly untrue.
            Pumped up by spring, the imaginations of PD reporters are off to the races, they mislead themselves. Only Derrick Goold is going to know enough about the minors and he kept Jackson at 15 on his list.
            There is nothing wrong with Garcia getting time at SS for Memphis. Garcia has very sure hands defensively. If he were to hit, as at Springfield, he would be interesting. At SS, he reunites with college teammate Wong.
            Public relations messaging has to be an important aspect of the business of any team. They do not want two rookie SSes, so Jackson can collect a second year at AAA, where we are also lucky to have Garcia. Abundance is a good problem.
            Jackson is reputedly a pal of Matt Adams. Both are hardnosed and determined to play in the majors. Jackson had a strong rookie season at Memphis, if he improves in a second go round, he will have put himself into position..

            • Brian Walton says:

              This has nothing to do with the P-D or PR or anything else. I reported Curtis will be the starting 3B at Memphis. You have burned several hundred words blathering on about why you believe that is not the case. The reality will be clear soon enough.

  3. blingboy says:

    The blurb about Siegrist says “starter turned reliever”. Is that official now?

  4. blingboy says:

    DD won’t be minimum wage next season. Jackson’s chances are probably better if he gets more experience used as a UT. He will have to hit, of course, and look good all around the infield.

  5. blingboy says:

    Marlins DFA Zack Cox. I wonder who will claim him. I remember some Marlins suit thought they got a steal getting him for Mujica. I guess there is a reason the Marlins are the Marlins.

  6. blingboy says:

    By the way, any word on Joey Bombs? He was cut loose 3 weeks ago. Or Tyler Greene.?

  7. blingboy says:

    Bling Sports Bureau Game Capsule

    Ronny is outhitting one Elvis and Rick is outhitting another one, as they have their team alone atop the AL West, a half game ahead of Arte’s has beens, a full game up on the cellar dwelling Nolans.

    Bud Chuck is 1-0 and Ankiel leads the majors in RBIs, but his 2.500 OPS is second to a teammate’s 2.750. The Luhnow’s are looking like a lumber company so far.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.