All posts by Marilyn Green

Cardinals Minor League Notebook – May 11, 2022

photo: Chandler Redmond (Peoria Chiefs)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 1-3 on Tuesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day, Springfield DH Chandler Redmond, drove in five. Other standouts for the Double-A Cards were Jordan Walker, Moises Gomez, Pedro Pages, Chase Pinder, Malcom Nunez and rehabber Edmundo Sosa.

Results from games played Tuesday, May 10.



Memphis 1 at Norfolk 6

The Memphis Redbirds fell to the Tides in a 6-1 contest on Tuesday night at Norfolk’s Harbor Park. Aaron Brooks took the mound for Memphis. The right hander pitched 3 2/3 innings, gave up two runs on five hits, struck out one and walked three. Brooks took the loss, his first of the season at Triple-A.

Tommy Parsons surrendered one run in 2 1/3 innings of relief. Blake Parker threw a scoreless seventh. Zach McAllister allowed three runs in the eighth as the home club pulled away.

The Redbirds scored first. In the top of the second inning, Alec Burleson singled and Ali Sanchez walked. Burleson advanced to third on a fly out and scored on a single by Cory Spangenberg.

Cory Spangenberg

Norfolk scored one run in the second, fourth and sixth, and three runs in the eighth. Memphis failed to score after the second inning. Memphis plated its one run on four hits, with no Redbird having multiples. Scott Hurst stole his second base of the season.

Memphis has a record of 15-16 and is in eighth place in the International League West, 6.5 games back of first place Nashville.

Wednesday’s game:  at Norfolk, RHP Johan Oviedo (2-2, 6.59) vs. Zac Lowther LHP (0-3, 9.64) 5:35 CT

Springfield 11, Amarillo 10

The Springfield Cardinals topped the Amarillo Sod Poodles in a one run slugfest on Tuesday at Hammons Field. It wasn’t easy as the home club almost squandered an 11-3 lead.

Kyle Leahy made the start for Springfield. The right hander pitched seven innings and gave up three runs, one earned, on five hits, struck out six and walked one. Leahy suffered his fourth loss of the season.

Kyle Leahy

Sean Kealey surrendered two runs, one earned, in the eighth. Cory Thompson started the ninth and relinquished five runs. He was replaced with one out in the inning by Johan Quezada, who got the final two outs for his first save of 2022.

Amarillo took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first, but Springfield quickly responded with five runs in the home half. Edmundo Sosa, on a rehab assignment, singled to begin the inning. A single by Matt Koperniak, followed by a Jordan Walker double, scored Sosa. Moises Gomez plated Koperniak on a single. Pedro Pages drew a walk. Chandler Redmond reached on a fielding error and Walker came home to score. Chase Pinder singled to score Gomez, and Malcom Nunez’ single plated Pages. The Cardinals led 5-2.

The Sod Poodles posted their third score in the second. In the fourth, the Cardinals added two more runs to their tally to make it 7-3. Walker singled and Gomez walked. Pages drove in Walker on a single. Gomez scored on a sac fly by Redmond.

Springfield increased its lead to 11-3 in the sixth on a three-run home run by Redmond, and a solo shot by Nunez. Amarillo added two runs in eighth and five runs in the ninth to close Springfield’s lead to one, but it wasn’t enough to keep the Cardinals out of the win column.

Walker went 3-for-5 with an RBI and two runs scored. Sosa was 2-for-4. Gomez was 2-for-4 with an RBI and three runs scored. Pages was 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored. Chase Pinder drove in one and was 2-for-5. Nunez had two RBI and was 2-for-2. Redmond plated five.

Chandler Redmond

On the base paths, Walker was caught stealing for the third time this season. In the field, Walker made his ninth error, a fielding miscue. Pages had a passed ball.

Springfield is 12-16 and is in last place in the Texas League North, 4.5 games back of first place Wichita.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Amarillo, LHP Domingo Robles (1-1, 3.42) vs. RHP Deyni Olivero (0-2, 8.64) 11:30 am.

Peoria 1, Cedar Rapids 10

The Peoria Chiefs were shellacked by the Cedar Rapids Kernels in a laugher at Dozer Park on Tuesday night. Dionys Rodriguez started for Peoria. The right hander pitched four innings and gave up four runs, two earned, on two hits, fanned six and walked one. Rodriguez took the loss, his second of the season.

John Beller surrendered two runs in three innings of relief. Enmanuel Solano threw a scoreless eighth. Colin Schmid allowed four runs, three earned, in the ninth.

The Kernels took a 2-0 lead in the third inning, then added on with two in the fourth, one in the fifth and one in the seventh. The Chiefs finally got on the board with their only run in the home seventh. Mack Chambers reached on an error and scored on a single by Thomas Francisco.

Thomas Francisco

The Chiefs scored one run on three hits. Francisco was 2-for-4 with and RBI. The other hit was a single L.J. Jones.

On the base paths, Matt Chamberlain was picked off and caught stealing. In the field, the Chiefs had a rough night. Masyn Winn made two fielding errors. Francisco Hernandez also had a fielding miscue. Chambers made a throwing error.

Peoria is 12-16 and is in fourth place in the Midwest League West, 8 games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Cedar Rapids, RHP Austin Love (0-3, 9.00) vs. Sean Mooney RHP (0-0, 1.69) 11:05 am.

Palm Beach 0 at Fort Myers 3

The Palm Beach Cardinals were no-hit by the Mighty Mussels in a 3-0 defeat at Fort Myers’ Hammond Stadium on Wednesday night. Trent Baker started for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched 4 2/3 innings, gave up two runs, one earned, on one hit, fanned eight and walked three to take his fourth loss of the season.

Luis Jimenez threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. Edwin Nunez tossed the final two innings and surrendered one run.

The Beach Birds’ offense struck out 14 times, including three each by Wade Stauss and Trejyn Fletcher, and drew three walks against a trio of Fort Myers hurlers. They were 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position. Tyler Reichenborn made a fielding error.

Palm Beach is 11-17 and sits in last place in the Florida State League, 7 games back of first place St. Lucie.

Wednesday’s game:  at Fort Myers, Zane Mills RHP (1-1, 3.16) vs Travis Adams RHP (1-0, 1.80) 6:00 CT.


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Palm Beach Cardinals Notebook – 2022 Week 5


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – May 2-8

photo: Juan Yepez (D. Ross Cameron/USA TODAY Sports)

The St. Louis Cardinals went 4-3 in a week that included six road games. The pitching remains inconsistent, with the arrival of rookie Juan Yepez aiding the offense. Our history feature recounts the cross-state Cardinals-Royals rivalry.



Game recaps

Monday, May 2 – Cardinals 1, Royals 0

The St. Louis Cardinals met the Kansas City Royals at Busch Stadium in a makeup of a previously rained out game. The Cardinals prevailed in a low scoring contest.

Steven Matz took the mound for St. Louis. The left hander pitched six scoreless innings, allowed four hits and fanned four to earn his third win of the season. Kodi Whitley, Nick Wittgren, and Giovanny Gallegos each tossed a scoreless inning. Gallegos collected his fifth save.

Steven Matz

The only run of the game was scored by the Cardinals in the first inning on a solo home run by Paul Goldschmidt. The first baseman was 2-for-3 in the game. There were four hits on the St. Louis side. Dylan Carlson doubled, and Brendan Donovan singled.

Tuesday, May 3 – Cardinals 1 at Royals 7

The Cardinals left St. Louis and traveled to Kansas City to take on the Royals in a two-game series. The Redbirds were overmatched by a determined Royals offense.

Dakota Hudson started for the Cardinals. The right hander pitched six innings and gave up three runs on nine hits, struck out four and walked two. Hudson took the loss, his second of the season. T.J. McFarland surrendered two runs in the seventh and recorded only one out. Jake Woodford tossed the final 1 2/3 innings and allowed two more runs.

The Cardinals scored their sole run in the eighth. Tommy Edman singled and Paul Goldschmidt walked. Tyler O’Neill plated Edman on a single.

On the base paths, Edman was caught stealing for the first time.

Wednesday, May 4 – Cardinals 10 at Royals 0

The Cardinals routed the Royals in the conclusion of the two-game series in Kansas City. Starter Adam Wainwright pitched seven scoreless innings, allowed one hit, struck out two and walked one to earn his third win of the season.

Adam Wainwright

T.J. McFarland and Packy Naughton each tossed a scoreless inning of relief.

St. Louis took an early lead, scoring five runs in the first inning. Tommy Edman and Paul Goldschmidt drew walks. Nolan Arenado followed with a three-run home run to left center field. Juan Yepez doubled for his first professional hit and scored on a triple by Tyler O’Neill. Harrison Bader plated O’Neill on a sac fly.

The score remained 5-0 until the seventh inning when three consecutive walks (to Paul DeJong, Edman and Goldschmidt) and a single by Nolan Arenado, resulted in two runs scored. In the eighth, Bader singled, Yadier Molina singled and Bader scored on a sac fly by DeJong.

The Cardinals posted two more runs in the ninth on an O’Neill long ball. Arenado went 2-for-4 with five RBI. O’Neill was 2-for-4 with three RBI and two runs scored. Bader and DeJong each drove in one.

Yepez became the first player in Cardinals history double twice in his first MLB game.

On the base paths, DeJong stole his third base of the season and Edman swiped his sixth. Arenado made a fielding error.

Thursday, May 5 – Cardinals 7 at Giants 1

The Cardinals headed to the West Coast for a four-game series at the 2021 NL West champion San Francisco Giants. The Cardinals beat the Giants by a six-run margin.

Miles Mikolas started for St. Louis. The right hander pitched 5 2/3 innings, gave up one run on seven hits, struck out three and walked three to earn his second win of the season.

Miles Mikolas

Andre Pallante relieved Mikolas and threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Nick Wittgren and Kodi Whitley each tossed a scoreless inning.

The Cardinals got on the board in the third inning on a solo home run by Yadier Molina. St. Louis added to the lead in the fifth on a two-run single by Tommy Edman.

The Giants scored their only run in the home fifth. In the seventh, the Cardinals expanded their lead to 7-1. Dylan Carlson doubled and scored on a single by Edman. Paul Goldschmidt singled and Nolan Arenado drew a walk. Tyler O’Neill singled to plate Edman and Goldschmidt. Arenado scored on a single by Juan Yepez.

Tommy Edman

Edman went 3-for-5 with three RBI. O’Neill was 2-for-5 with two RBI. Yepez was 2-for-4 with an RBI. Molina was 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. Carlson was 2-for-4 with two runs scored.

In the field, O’Neill had an outfield assist at second base.

Friday, May 6 – Cardinals 3 at Giants 2

The Cardinals topped the Giants in a ninth inning rally on Friday night at Oracle Park. In a tie game, the Cardinals sneaked ahead in the ninth.

Jordan Hicks made the start for St. Louis. The right hander pitched 4 1/3 innings, gave up two runs on three hits, fanned five and walked two. Genesis Cabrera threw two scoreless innings of relief. Ryan Helsley fanned four in 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Giovanny Gallegos earned his sixth save in a scoreless ninth.

The Cardinals scored first in the fifth inning on a two-run home run by Harrison Bader. The Giants responded in the home half of the fifth with two runs to tie it.

The game remained knotted up 2-2 until the ninth. Juan Yepez doubled and scored on Dylan Carlson’s single to give the Cardinals a 3-2 lead. Gallegos held off the Giants in the ninth to grant the Cardinals their second win of the series.

In the field, Cabrera picked a runner off first base.

Saturday, May 7 – Cardinals 7 at Giants 13

The Cardinals were shellacked by the Giants in a slugfest on Saturday night in San Francisco. Starter Steven Matz could not hold back the San Francisco offense. The left hander pitched only two innings and gave up eight runs on five hits, struck out three and walked three. Matz took the loss, his second of the season.

Jake Woodford surrendered one unearned run in 3 1/3 innings of relief. Packy Naughton secured the last two outs of the sixth. Nick Wittgren allowed a run in the seventh. Kodi Whitley started the eighth and could not record an out after walking four Giants and giving up a run. T.J. McFarland replaced Whitley and escaped further damage.

The Cardinals briefly led the game in the first inning 1-0. Tommy Edman walked and stole second. Nolan Arenado plated Edman on a single.

The Giants immediately took over the game by scoring four runs in the home half of the first. The Cardinals made it closer in the second. Juan Yepez singled to lead off. Harrison Bader singled and Yadier Molina singled to score Yepez. Bader scored on a single by Paul DeJong. The Giants lead was cut to 4-3.

The Giants persisted and scored four more runs in the bottom of the second to make it 8-3. The Cardinals added one run in the fourth. Bader walked, stole second base, and scored on a DeJong single.

The Giants matched St. Louis with one run in the bottom of the fourth. St. Louis once again got close in the seventh on a three-run home run by Dylan Carlson. The Giants lead was 9-7.

San Francisco made it 10-7 in the bottom of the seventh, then blew up the score to 13-7 in the eighth. The Cardinals were unable to catch up.

Bader went 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Goldschmidt was 2-for-5 and Arenado was 2-for-5 with an RBI. DeJong was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Carlson drove in three.

On the base paths, Bader and Edman each stole their seventh base of the season. In the field, the Cardinals had a poor showing up the middle as Edman made a throwing error, DeJong had a fielding miscue, and Molina dropped a foul ball.

Sunday, May 8 – Cardinals 3 at Giants 4

The Cardinals were edged by the Giants in the final game of the series on Sunday at Oracle Park. Dakota Hudson took the mound for St. Louis. The right hander pitched 4 2/3 innings, gave up three runs on five hits, and walked four.

T.J. McFarland secured the final out of the fifth inning. Genesis Cabrera surrendered one run in the sixth. Andre Pallante and Giovanny Gallegos each tossed a scoreless inning.

The Cardinals took a 2-0 lead in the third on a two-run home run by Juan Yepez, the rookie’s first career long ball. San Francisco quickly took the lead away with three runs in the home second.

Juan Yepez

In the sixth, St. Louis tied it 3-3. Yepez walked and Dylan Carlson smacked a ground rule double. Harrison Bader plated Yepez on a ground out to short.

Once again the Giants responded in the bottom half of the inning, scoring one to take a 4-3 lead. The two teams battled but in the end the Cardinals were unable to push another run across the plate.

Yepez went 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs scored. Carlson and Paul Goldschmidt were both 2-for-4. Harrison Bader drove in one.

In the field, Paul DeJong committed his fourth error, a throwing miscue.

Arenado NL Player of the Month

Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado was named the National League Player of the Month for April.

Nolan Arenado

The 31-year-old batted .375 with 12 extra-base hits including five home runs and 17 RBI. His OPS of 1.125 led the NL and he ranked third in batting average, tied for second in RBI and tied for fourth in home runs.

Arenado is the second straight Cardinal to be NL Player of the Month as Tyler O’Neill received the honors for September 2021.

O’Neill arbitration hearing held

Speaking of O’Neill, the left fielder and the Cardinals held their salary arbitration hearing on Friday with a three-person panel. O’Neill asked for $4.15 million. The team’s offer was $3.4 million. The decision on which will be chosen will be announced in a few weeks.

Tyler O’Neill

Coming off a strong 2021, the 27-year-old is off to a slow start in 2022, with a slash line of .206/.277/.330/.607. O’Neill does have 19 RBI in 26 games, second-most on the team.

The other six Cardinals who are eligible for arbitration previously settled. Agreeing to one-year deals were pitchers Jack Flaherty, Giovanny Gallegos, Jordan Hicks, Dakota Hudson and Alex Reyes. Outfielder Harrison Bader came to terms with the club on a two-year extension covering 2022 and 2023.

NL Central Standings

Team W L Pct GB
Milwaukee 19 10 0.655
St. Louis 16 12 0.571 2.5
Pittsburgh 11 16 0.407 7
Chicago 9 18 0.333 9
Cincinnati 5 23 0.179 13.5

The Big Picture

With six road games, the Cardinals ended the week with a winning record of 4-3. They took 2 of 3 from the Royals and split 2-2 with the Giants.

St. Louis remains in second place in the NL Central, 2.5 games back of the Brewers. Both teams lost their last two games, so the Cardinals failed to make any gains when they had the opportunity.

The offense has been able to score runs for the most part, but the pitching needs to give up less. The run differential for the week was +5. The team can do better.

Dylan Carlson

The top offensive performers for the week by OPS are Juan Yepez (1.289 on nine hits in his first five games), Dylan Carlson (1.155 in seven games), Paul Goldschmidt (.994 in seven games), and Tyler O’Neill (.808 in six games). Yadier Molina has an OPS of .846 in three games. Former OPS leaders Tommy Edman (.732) and Nolan Arenado (.707), have fallen off for the week.

Andrew Knizner (.133 in four games), Paul DeJong (.216 in seven games), and Corey Dickerson (.222 in five games) are scuffling. In fact the designated hitter position has been a disappointment so far for the season. Albert Pujols (.220 in 2022) has performed only slightly better than Dickerson. Yepez filled the DH position in three of his five games and if he hit left-handed, would be an excellent candidate for the job on a permanent basis. Dickerson has shown almost nothing so far this season (.430 OPS). DeJong’s OPS remains a disappointing .417 and Sosa is on the IL.

Miles Mikolas continues to be the bright spot in the rotation. Adam Wainwright, whose recent performances had been underwhelming, had an excellent start against the Royals on Wednesday. In contrast, Dakota Hudson, who started the season well, struggled in his last two starts, especially Sunday’s start in San Francisco. Steven Matz has shown flashes but has been mostly disappointing. Jordan Hicks has improved to a degree as his pitch counts increase.

Ryan Helsley

The really bright spot in the bullpen is Ryan Helsley, who had two spectacular outings recently and has yet to allow a run in 2022. The right-hander threw triple digit gas and mowed down hitters. Giovanny Gallegos and rookie Andre Pallante have also been good. The rest of the bullpen needs some work, most especially Kodi Whitley, who had a disastrous appearance against the Giants.

The Cardinals have Monday off after 20 straight games. It will be a much needed rest for the pitchers. The Orioles come to St. Louis for a three-game series. Baltimore has been a cellar dweller for the past several seasons, though they are surprisingly playing better than the Red Sox, who are in last place in the AL East. Historically, the Cardinals haven’t performed well in interleague play.

At the end of the week the Cardinals play the Giants again at Busch Stadium. Winning both series or even sweeping one of the series would be a big boost, especially because the Brewers continue to have a fairly easy schedule. The Cardinals need to keep the Brewers from getting a large lead in the Division as they did in 2021.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 5/2 The Cardinals optioned LHP Packy Naughton to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 5/2 The Cardinals designated RHP Aaron Brooks for assignment.
  • 5/3 The Cardinals recalled 1B Juan Yepez from the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 5/3 The Cardinals recalled LHP Packy Naughton from the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 5/3 The Cardinals placed LHP Steven Matz on the bereavement list.
  • 5/3 The Cardinals placed INF Edmundo Sosa on the Covid-IL
  • 5/3 The Cardinals sent RHP Drew VerHagen on rehab assignment to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 5/5 The Cardinals sent RHP Aaron Brooks outright to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 5/6 The Cardinals placed RHP Adam Wainwright on the Covid-IL
  • 5/6 The Cardinals activated LHP Steven Matz from the bereavement list.

Injury Report

  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder. The right hander was placed on the 10-day injured list to begin the season. Flaherty has been throwing at increasing distances on flat ground. Last week, John Mozeliak told Bally Sports Midwest that Flaherty is about a week away from his first bullpen session and that the club is optimistic about his recovery.
  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes was placed on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until June. John Mozeliak said last week that Reyes is about two weeks behind Flaherty with more news expected mid-May.
  • RHP Drew VerHagen remains on the 10-day injured list due to a right hip impingement. He received an injection in the hip. The right hander threw 1 2/3 innings in a rehab start in Memphis on Tuesday, May 3. VerHagen then tested positive for COVID and was unable to make another start during the week. It was announced during the game on Sunday that when the pitcher gets a negative test he will throw a bullpen and then be sent on another rehab assignment, likely in Springfield since Memphis will be on the road.
  • INF Edmundo Sosa was placed on the COVID IL on May 3. Sosa must be symptom free and test negative twice before he can return to the team.
  • RHP Adam Wainwright was placed on the COVID IL on May 6. Wainwright tested positive for COVID but is symptom free. He must test negative twice before returning to the team. As of Sunday Wainwright has not tested negative twice but will be tested again on Monday and if he tests negative can make his Tuesday scheduled start.

Looking Ahead

The Cardinals return home for a six-game homestand to begin on Tuesday. Three games against the Orioles open the homestand. A three-game set with the Giants concludes the week.

St. Louis leaves for a seven-game road trip the following week, starting in New York as they take on the Mets in four games. The Cardinals then head to Pittsburgh to play the Pirates in a weekend series.

The regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

The Cardinals played the Kansas City Royals this week in the final three games of a four game season series. The teams met the previous week in which one of the two games was rained out. The makeup of that game was played on Monday in St. Louis with two more games following in Kansas City.

The two teams, one in the NL and one in the AL, met in the 1985 World Series, but did not face each other in the regular season until interleague games were introduced starting with in 1997. The Royals as came into existence in 1969 as an expansion franchise after the Athletics left Kansas City in 1968 and moved to Oakland.

This week’s Blast takes a look at the history between the two teams, their records and other interesting details of note since the Cards and Royals first met in the 1985 World Series.

The two teams have met in every regular season since 1997 for a total of 127 times. Unlike with other AL teams the Cardinals play only every three years, the Cardinals play their Missouri AL rivals every year. This is the same for every NL team who has an AL team in their state or locality, like the Chicago Cubs against the White Sox and the Dodgers against the Angels, etc.

The Cardinals’ overall record against the Royals in the regular season is 76-51 for a win percentage of 59.8%. St. Louis’ record in home games is 30-27 and their record in Kansas City is 46-24. The Cardinals clearly play the Royals better in Kansas City than at home.

The Cardinals have met the Royals in the postseason only once, in the 1985 World Series, during which they lost to Kansas City in seven games. Most Cardinals fans are aware of the controversy that surrounded that series.

Beginning with interleague play in 1997, the Cardinals have shut out the Royals 14 times. The first regular season shutout was on July 2, 1998, a 3-0 win for the Cardinals. The last shutout was the 1-0 win over the Royals on Monday. The Cardinals have been shut out by the Royals three times in the regular season. All occurred during the five-year span from 2011-15. The first was May 20, 2011 (3-0), then June 2, 2014 (6-0) and last on May 22, 2015 (5-0).

The biggest run differential in a game was the 10-0 St. Louis win on Wednesday. The most runs the Cardinals have scored against the Royals was 13, which they accomplished three times – two were wins and one was a loss. In 2003, the Cardinals beat the Royals on back to back days, June 28 and 29, 13-9 and 13-6. On June 9, 1999, the Cardinals lost to the Royals 17-13. The Royals beat the Cardinals 11-10 the previous day on June 8. The Royals scored 17 runs on the Cardinals a second time, on June 14, 2007, in a 17-8 loss for the Cardinals.

The longest game between the two teams was 15 innings on June 17, 2012, a 5-3 loss for the Cardinals in Busch Stadium. The two teams played nine other extra-inning games. The shortest between the two teams was a six-inning game that was called for rain on May 23, 2015. The Royals won 3-2 at Kauffman Stadium.

The World Series matchup between the Cardinals and the Royals ended with a seven-game loss for St. Louis. The Cardinals won three of the seven games. Two of the games were shutouts, a 3-0 win for the Cardinals in Game 4 and an 11-0 win for the Royals in Game 7. St. Louis won the other two games, 3-1 (Game 1) and 4-2 (Game 2).

Starting in 2023, every team in the NL will play every team in the AL. MLB is abandoning the rotating formula of every three years. All 30 teams will play at least one three-games series against the other 29 teams. Intradivision games will be reduced from 19 to 14. The Cardinals and Royals typically play four games, two in St. Louis and two in Kansas City. This may change.


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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2022 Week 5


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – May 7, 2022

photo: Kramer Robertson (Memphis Redbirds)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 1-4 on Friday with Springfield winning and Memphis dropping two. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day, 3B Kramer Robertson, went 3-for-4 with 5 RBI in the Redbirds’ Game 2 loss and 4-for-7 for the night. Other standouts include Luken Baker, Tyler Pike and Masyn Winn.

Results from games played Friday, May 6.



Memphis 3, Jacksonville 7 (seven innings, Game 1)

The Memphis Redbirds fell to the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp in the first game of a twin bill on Friday at AutoZone Park. Matthew Liberatore took the mound for Memphis. The left hander pitched 5 2/3 innings, gave up six runs on nine hits, fanned seven and walked two. Libertore suffered his third loss of the season.

In relief, Tommy Parsons surrendered one run in the final 1 1/3 innings.

Jacksonville got on the board first with two runs in the top of the first inning. Memphis responded with one run in the home half. Lars Nootbaar walked and stole second base. Luken Baker singled to score Nootbaar.

The Jumbo Shrimp added to their lead with one run in the second, then widened their tally with three runs in the third. In the fourth, the Redbirds scored two on a two-run home run from Baker.

Jacksonville cemented their lead with one score in the seventh. Memphis failed to score after the fourth inning. Baker went 2-for-3 with three RBI.

Luken Baker

On the base paths, Nootbaar stole his second base of the season. In the field, Baker made a fielding error. Nootbaar had an outfield assist at second base.

Memphis 6, Jacksonville 10 (nine innings, Game 2)

The Redbirds were swept in the twin bill with Jacksonville in extra innings at AutoZone Park on Friday night. Johan Oviedo took the mound in game two. The right hander pitched six innings and gave up four runs seven hits, struck out three and walked three.

Brandon Waddell relieved and surrendered one run in the seventh. Junior Fernandez struggled, allowing five runs, four earned in 1 1/3 innings. Blake Parker got the final two outs in the ninth. Fernandez took the loss.

The Jumbo Shrimp jumped ahead 3-0 in the second and third innings. Memphis answered back with two runs in the home half of the third on a two-run double by Kramer Robertson.

The 3-2 lead lasted until Jacksonville added one run each in the sixth and seventh. The Redbirds tied it in the bottom half of the seventh on a three-run home run by Robertson.

Kramer Robertson

The game was originally scheduled for seven innings but went into extras. Neither team scored in the eighth. In the ninth, Jacksonvillle put up a crooked number, scoring five runs to take a 10-5 lead.

Memphis rallied in the bottom of the ninth but were only able to push one run across, on an RBI triple by Conner Capel.

Robertson went 3-for-4 with five RBI. No other Redbird had multiple hits.

Memphis is 15-13 on the season and is in fourth place in the International League West, 3.5 games back of first place Nashville.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Jacksonville, LHP Zack Thompson (1-0, 4.03) vs. Braxton Garrett LHP (2-1, 3.86) 6:35 CT.

Springfield 2, NW Arkansas 1

The Springfield Cardinals topped the Northwest Arkansas Naturals in a 2-1 game on Friday night at Hammons Field. In his first career start, right-hander Edgar Escobar pitched four innings, gave up one run on four hits, struck out four and walked one.

Tyler Pike

Tyler Pike threw four scoreless innings in relief to earn his first win of the season. Freddy Pacheco tossed a scoreless ninth and collected his fifth save.

NW Arkansas took an initial 1-0 in the first inning. Springfield tied it up in the second when Nick Dunn doubled and scored on a single by Matt Koperniak. The game remained tied until the fifth when the Cardinals plated a second run on a single by Moises Gomez.

Dunn went 2-for-4. Koperniak and Gomez each drove in a run.

On the base paths, Jordan Walker was caught stealing for the second time.

Springfield has a record of 11-14 and sits in last place in the Texas League North, 5 games back of first place Wichita.

Saturday’s game:  vs. NW Arkansas, Connor Lunn RHP (2-2, 3.90) vs. Drew Parrish LHP (2-1, 3.38) 6:05 CT.

Peoria 2 at South Bend 4

The Peoria Chiefs lost to the Cubs on Wednesday night in South Bend by the score of 4-2. Austin Love started for Peoria. The right hander pitched five innings, gave up two runs on six hits, struck out four and walked two. Love took the loss, his third of the season.

Wilfredo Pereira surrendered two runs in two relief innings pitched. Leonardo Taveras tossed a scoreless eighth.

South Bend got off to a 2-0 lead in the first inning. The Chiefs scored one run in the fourth on an RBI single by Francisco Hernandez.

Masyn Winn

The Cubs expanded their lead to 4-1 in the sixth. In the eighth, Peoria added their second and final run. Masyn Winn tripled and scored on a wild pitch.

The Chiefs scored two runs on eight hits. Winn was 2-for-5 including the triple and a run scored, with the leadoff man raising his batting average to .389. Tommy Jew was 2-for-4.

Hernandez and Mack Chambers each stole a base.

Peoria is 12-12 on the season and is in third place in the Midwest League West, 4.5 games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Saturday’s games:  doubleheader at South Bend, Game 1: RHP Logan Gragg (1-1, 5.29) vs. Max Bain RHP (1-0, 3.60) 1:30 CT. Game 2: RHP Michael McGreevy (1-0, 1.27) vs. LHP Jordan Wicks.

Palm Beach 3, St. Lucie 8

The Palm Beach Cardinals were defeated by the St. Lucie Mets in an 8-3 contest at Roger Dean Stadium on Friday. Carlos Guarate started for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched four innings, gave up six runs on eight hits, struck five and walked two. Guarate took his second loss of the season.

Jose Moreno surrendered one unearned run in three innings of relief. Gustavo Rodriguez allowed one unearned run in the eighth. Gianluca Dalatri tossed a scoreless ninth.

St. Lucie took a 1-0 lead in the second inning, then increased their lead to 4-0 in the third. The Beach Birds score their first run in the home half of the third. Sander Mora doubled and Hansel Otamendi drew a walk. Tyler Reichenborn walked, and Mora scored on a wild pitch.

The Mets posted two more runs in the fourth to widen the deficit to 6-1. The Cardinals added their second run in the bottom of the fourth on a sac fly by Otamendi.

Palm Beach scored a third time in the fifth inning. Ramon Mendoza walked to begin the inning and later scored on a single by Osvaldo Tovalin.

Osvaldo Tovalin

St. Lucie widened their tally to 8-3 with run one scored in the seventh and one in the eighth. The Cardinals did not score after the fifth.

Riechenborn and Tovalin each had two hits. Tovalin and Otamendi drove in one each. In the field, Moreno made an error on a pickoff. Rodriguez made a throwing error.

Palm Beach is 9-16 on the season and sits in last place in the Florida State League East, 9 games back of first place St. Lucie.

Saturday’s game:  vs. St. Lucie, LH Chris Gerard (1-1, 4.22) vs. TBA 2:00 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – May 5, 2022

photo: Lars Nootbaar (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 1-3 on Wednesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is Memphis OF Lars Nootbaar, whose three-run home run cemented Memphis’ win over Jacksonville. Kramer Robertson, Conner Capel and Ben DeLuzio also contributed.

Results from games played Wednesday, May 4.



Memphis 7, Jacksonville 3

The Memphis Redbirds defeated the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp on Wednesday afternoon at AutoZone Park. In his return to the rotation, Angel Rondon pitched three innings and gave up two runs on one hit, struck out six and walked five.

James Naile relieved and surrendered one run in three innings. Kyle Ryan threw scoreless innings to earn his first win of the season. Junior Fernandez tossed a scoreless ninth.

Jacksonville took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning. Memphis made it 2-1 in the third on an RBI double by Kramer Robertson.

The Jumbo Shrimp increased their lead to 3-1 in the fifth. A big seventh inning put the Redbirds up 7-3. Alec Burleson led off the inning with a double. Ivan Herrera singled, Conner Capel singled, and Burleson scored. Evan Mendoza drew a walk, and Ben DeLuzio plated Herrera on a single. Capel then scored on a wild pitch. Lars Nootbaar followed with a three-run home run to right field.

Lars Nootbaar

Jacksonville failed to rally, and the Redbirds celebrated their 15th win of the season. Robertson, Herrera and DeLuzio each had two hits. Nootbaar drove in three.

On the base paths, DeLuzio stole his first base of the season.

Memphis is 15-11 on the season and stands in third place in the International League West, 2.5 games back of first place Columbus.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Jacksonville, LHP Matthew Liberatore (3-2, 3.18) vs. Daniel Castano LHP (0-0, 11.57) 6:45 CT.

Springfield 3, NW Arkansas 13

The Springfield Cardinals were walloped by the Northwest Arkansas Naturals in a 13-3 laugher at Hammons Field on Wednesday night. Kyle Leahy initially took the mound for Springfield. The right hander pitched five innings and gave up seven runs on nine hits, struck out two and walked six. Leahy took the loss, his fourth of the season as his ERA grew to 9.53.

Sean Kealey relieved first and threw two scoreless innings. Johan Quezada pitched a scoreless eighth and returned to start the ninth. Quezada yielded five runs before he was replaced by Kevin Marnon with one out. Marnon allowed one more run before getting the final two outs.

NW Arkansas took command of the game with a five-run third inning. The Cardinals scratched out one run in the home half of the third to cut the lead to 5-1. Delvin Perez drew a walk and Matt Koperniak singled. Perez advanced to third on the hit. Perez then scored on a wild pitch.

The Naturals tacked on two more runs in the fifth. The score was 7-1 until the bottom of the eighth when Moises Gomez blasted his MiLB-leading 13th long ball of the season, a two-run shot.

Moisés Gómez

NW Arkansas poured it on in the ninth and ran the score up to 13-3. The Cardinals were unable to respond to the onslaught.

The Springfield offense had six hits, drew just two walks and scored three runs. Todd Lott was 2-for-4. All the hits were singles but the home run from Gomez.

In the field, Perez made a fielding error. Leahy picked a runner off second base.

Springfield has a record of 10-13 and stands in last place in the Texas League North, 4 games back of first place Tulsa and Wichita.

Thursday’s game:  vs. NW Arkansas, Domingo Robles LHP (1-1, 3.38) vs. Dante Biasi LHP (1-0, 4.50) 6:35 CT.

Peoria 3 at South Bend 6

The Peoria Chiefs were defeated by the Cubs in a 6-3 contest on Wednesday at South Bend’s Four Winds Field. Dionys Rodriguez made the start for Peoria. The right hander pitched five innings and gave up three runs on three hits, fanned seven and walked two.

Nathanael Heredia threw scoreless innings in relief. Nick Trogrlic-Iverson surrendered three runs in the eighth and took the loss, his first of the season.

Nathanael Heredia

The Chiefs scored two runs in the top of the second to take a 2-0 lead. L.J. Jones doubled to start the inning and Mack Chambers drew a walk. Aaron Antonini singled to bring home Jones. Chambers scored on a sac fly by Thomas Francisco.

South Bend responded with one run in the second, then added two more in the third to make 3-2. Peoria tied it at 3-3 in the fourth on an RBI double by Masyn Winn.

The score remained knotted until the eighth, when the Cubs posted three runs to go up 6-3. Peoria was unable to respond and suffered their 11th loss of the season.

Antonini went 2-for-4 with an RBI. He was the only Chief with multiple hits. Francisco and Winn each drove in a run.

On the base paths, Mike Antico stole his Midwest League-leading 14th base of the season. Winn was picked off first base. In the field, Noah Mendlinger made a throwing error.

Peoria is 12-11 on the season and sits in third place in the Midwest League West, 3.5 games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Thursday’s game:  at South Bend, Austin Love RHP (0-2, 10.59) vs. TBA 6:05 CT.

Palm Beach 2, St. Lucie 3

The Palm Beach Cardinals were edged by the St. Lucie Mets in a one run contest on Wednesday night at Roger Dean Stadium. Trent Baker made the start for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched 4 2/3 innings, gave up three runs on six hits, fanned eight and walked two. Baker suffered his third loss of the season.

Bryan Pope threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings in relief. Alex Cornwell tossed the final two scoreless innings.

St. Lucie took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, then added a run in the third. The Cardinals answered in the home half of the third with one run to decrease the lead to 3-1. Sander Mora led off the inning with a single and Ramon Mendoza drew a walk. Tyler Reichenborn singled to plate Mora.

Tyler Reichenborn

The score remained 3-1 until the eighth inning. Osvaldo Tovalin tripled and scored on a ground out by Jeremy Rivas to make the score the 3-2 final. Reichenborn was 2-for-3 with an RBI.

In the field, Tovalin had an outfield assist at second base.

Palm Beach is 9-14 and is in last place in the Florida State League East, 7 games back of first place St. Lucie.

Thursday’s game:  vs. St. Lucie, Zane Mills RHP (1-1, 2.96) vs. Luis Moreno RHP (1-0, 6.08) 5:30 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – May 4, 2022

photo: Pedro Pages (Springfield Cardinals Fanatic Photos)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 1-3 on Tuesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Players of the Day are Springfield CF Moises Gomez and C Pedro Pages, who combined for four hits, five RBI and four runs scored in the Cardinals win over NW Arkansas. Other standouts include Peoria starter Gordon Graceffo, with six scoreless innings with eight strikeouts and Memphis’ Juan Yepez with three RBI.

Results from games played Tuesday, May 3.



Memphis 6, Jacksonville 8

The Memphis Redbirds fell to the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp in a Tuesday night contest at AutoZone Park. St. Louis’ Drew VerHagen pitched 1 2/3 innings in his first rehab start. The right hander gave up one run on one hit, struck out two and walked one.

Connor Thomas scuffled through 3 1/3 innings of relief. The regular starter surrendered six runs, four earned, on nine hits to take his first loss of the season. Zach McAllister tossed two scoreless innings. Blake Parker relinquished one run in the eighth and Brandon Waddell hurled a scoreless ninth.

Memphis scored the first run of the game in the first inning. Lars Nootbaar led off with a single and stole second base. Nolan Gorman plated Nootbaar on a single.

Jacksonville tied the game at 1-1 in the second, then added two runs in the third and two runs in the fourth to take a 5-1 lead. The Redbirds cut the lead by one in the home half of the fourth. Ali Sanchez walked, and Conner Capel doubled. Luken Baker drove in Sanchez on a ground out.

The Jumbo Shrimp widened their tally to 7-2 in the fifth. In the seventh, Memphis scored four to make it 7-6 on a solo home run by Baker and a three-run home run by Juan Yepez, who was called up to St. Louis after the game.

Juan Yepez

In the eighth, Jacksonville added their final run on a balk. Memphis was unable to rally.

The Redbirds offense scored six runs on six hits. No Memphis player had more than one hit. Yepez had three RBI and Baker plated two.

On the base paths, Nootbaar stole his first base. In the field, Nootbaar and Yepez each made a throwing error.

Memphis is 14-11 and is in fourth place in the International League West, three games back of first place Nashville.

Tuesday’s game:  vs. Jacksonville, Angel Rondon RHP (1-0, 2.84) vs. Matthew Kent LHP (1-1, 4.35) 12:05 CT.

Springfield 12, NW Arkansas 5

The Springfield Cardinals defeated the Northwest Arkansas Naturals in a 12-5 contest at Hammons Field on Tuesday night. Dalton Roach started for Springfield. The right hander pitched six innings, gave up two runs on five hits and fanned seven to earn his second win of the season.

Kevin Marnon relieved and surrendered three runs in 2/3 of an inning. Cory Thompson threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Michael Brettell tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Cardinals took an early lead with three runs in the first inning.  The inning began with back to back walks from Matt Koperniak and Jordan Walker. A double steal by Koperniak and Walker resulted in Koperniak scoring on a throwing error. Malcom Nunez doubled to plate Walker, then scored on a single by Chandler Redmond.

Springfield added to the 3-0 lead with two runs in the second on a two run double by Pedro Pages. The Naturals got on the board in the fourth with two runs scored. The Cardinals answered with one run in the home half of the fourth on a solo home run by Moises Gomez, his MiLB-leading 12th of the season.

Moisés Gómez

In the sixth, Springfield brought four more runs home. Walker was hit by a pitch and Gomez walked. Pages was hit by a pitch. Nunez walked and Walker scored. Redmond singled to plate Gomez.  Todd Lott drew a bases loaded walk to score Pages.  Nunez scored on a walk by Delvin Perez.

NW Arkansas rallied for three runs in the top of the seventh. The Cardinals responded with two runs in the bottom half of the seventh on a two run double by Pages.

Pedro Pages

Gomez was 2-for-4 with an RBI and three runs scored. Pages was 2-for-3 with four RBI. Redmond was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Walker drew three walks and scored four times.

The Cards were active on the base paths as Koperniak stole his fifth base, Walker stole his ninth base and Gomez stole his second base of the season.

In the field, Walker made two throwing errors.

Springfield is 10-12 on the season and sits in last place in the Texas League North, 3.5 games back of first place Tulsa.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. NW Arkansas, Kyle Leahy RHP (0-3, 8.66) vs. TBA 6:35 CT.

Peoria 4 at South Bend 5 (10 innings)

The Peoria Chiefs were topped by the South Bend Cubs in an extra innings on Tuesday night at Four Winds Field. Gordon Graceffo started for Peoria. The right hander pitched six scoreless innings, allowed two hits, fanned eight and walked one while lowering his ERA to a league-best 0.85.

Gordon Graceffo

Levi Prater relieved and surrendered one run in the seventh. Colin Schmid threw 1 2/3 innings and allowed three runs.  Schmid was charged with the blown save. Enmanuel Solano relinquished one unearned run in the 10th and took the loss, his second of the season.

The game was scoreless until the sixth inning when the Chiefs took a 2-0 lead.  Mack Chambers led off with a single. Francisco Hernandez singled. Thomas Francisco was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Chambers scored on a wild pitch. Tommy Jew walked, and Hernandez scored.

Peoria made it 4-0 in the eighth. Hernandez doubled and Francisco followed with a double that plated Hernandez.  Masyn Winn singled to score Francisco.

South Bend finally got on the board with one run in the home half of the eighth.  In the ninth, the Cubs tied it up 4-4.

The game went into the 10th. The Chiefs failed to bring the runner on second home in the top of the 10th, but South Bend succeeded in doing so and walked the game off, 5-4.

Hernandez was 2-for-4 with two runs scored. No other Chiefs player had multiple hits.

On the base paths, Mike Antico stole two bases, increasing his total to 13 on the season. Winn stole his 11th base. Jew was caught stealing.

In the field, Matt Chamberlain had an outfield assist at third base.

Peoria has a record of 12-10 and sits in third place in the Midwest League West, 3.5 games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Wednesday’s game:  at South Bend, RHP Dionys Rodriguez (0-1, 2.00) vs. RHP Kohl Franklin 10:05 am CT.

Palm Beach 1 at St. Lucie 3

The Beach Birds took the early lead but could not hold on as they lost to the Mets in a close contest in Port St. Lucie Tuesday evening. Starter Inohan Paniagua pitched six innings. The righty allowed nine hits, two earned runs and struck out five opposing hitters.

Inohan Paniagua

Osvaldo Tovalin doubled, scoring Ramon Mendoza in the bottom of the first inning. The Cards led 1-0 after one. Paniagua surrendered the lead in the next inning via a solo home run to tie the score.

Paniagua allowed baserunners in the next few innings but managed to escape unscathed each time. That was the case until the fifth inning when St. Lucie notched another solo homer against Palm Beach’s starter.

The Cardinals managed six hits on the evening but could not capitalize on them. The team left 10 runners on base in total.

St. Lucie homered again in the eighth inning, with their third solo shot sealing the loss for the Cardinals. Tyler Reichenborn led the way with two hits. Paniagua suffered the loss, his second of the season.

Wednesday’s game:  at St. Lucie, Trent Baker RHP (1-2, 3.15) vs. Mike Vasil RHP (0-1, 3.18) 5:30 CT.

Note: The above Palm Beach game recap was written by TCN’s local reporter, Kevin Garcia, who covered the game in person Tuesday night. Join The Cardinal Nation to catch Kevin’s in-depth reports on the Beach Birds each Tuesday morning all season long.

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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – April 25-May 1

photo: Mike Maddux, Yadier Molina, Miles Mikolas (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals had a disappointing 3-4 week at home, falling out of first place. The offense continued its inconsistency as the starting pitching of Miles Mikolas and Dakota Hudson remain a bright spot. The April home run hitting exploits of the 2000 Cardinals are remembered in our history feature.



Game recaps

Monday, April 25 – Cardinals 2, Mets 5

The St. Louis Cardinals took on the New York Mets in the first of a three-game series at Busch Stadium. Miles Mikolas took the mound for the Cardinals. The right hander pitched seven scoreless innings, allowed four hits, struck out five and walked one.

Genesis Cabrera threw a scoreless eighth. Giovanny Gallegos and T.J. McFarland combined to pitch the ninth. Gallegos surrendered four runs in the inning and McFarland relinquished one additional run. Gallegos took the loss and was charged with a blown save.

The game was a scoreless pitching duel between Mikolas and Max Scherzer until the eighth inning. Yadier Molina led off the home half of the inning with a single, and Harrison Bader followed with a single. Paul Goldschmidt drew a walk to load the bases. Tyler O’Neill singled and drove in Molina and Bader to give the Cardinals a 2-0 lead.

The Mets rallied in the ninth. Gallegos gave up two singles and a double that put the Mets on the board. Then the right hander allowed a two-run single to give New York a 3-2 lead. Key plays in the inning were a throwing error by third baseman Nolan Arenado and Gallegos being late to cover first base. Gallegos was replaced by McFarland, who gave up a two-run home run on his first pitch to Brandon Nimmo.

The Cardinals were unable to rally in the bottom half of the ninth. The offense scored two runs on five hits. Goldschmidt was 2-for 3. O’Neill drove in both Cardinals runs.

Tuesday, April 26 – Cardinals 0, Mets 3

The Cardinals were blanked by the Mets in the second game of the three-game series on Tuesday. Jordan Hicks got the start for St. Louis. The right hander pitched two innings and gave up two runs on two hits, struck out one and walked two. Hicks’ outing was cut short by a bruise caused by a comebacker to his right wrist area.

Andre Pallante threw three scoreless innings of relief on three hits allowed and one punch out. Nick Wittgren and Packy Naughton combined for the next two scoreless innings. Kodi Whitley tossed a scoreless eighth. Aaron Brooks surrendered one run in the ninth. Hicks suffered his second loss of the season.

The Cardinals offense managed only three hits in the game, singles from Paul Goldschmidt, Nolan Arenado, and Paul DeJong.

Tommy Edman stole two bases.

Wednesday April 27 – Cardinals 10, Mets 5

The Cardinals were able to salvage the final game of the series and avoid being swept at home. Starter Steven Matz pitched four innings and gave up four runs on six hits, fanned six and walked two.

Jake Woodford relieved and surrendered one run in two innings pitched to earn his first win. Genesis Cabrera threw two scoreless innings and Ryan Helsley tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Cardinals offense got on the board first on an RBI single by Corey Dickerson. The Mets answered by scoring four runs in the second to make it 4-1.

The Redbirds got two runs back in the third. Tommy Edman and Paul Goldschmidt hit back-to-back singles. The runners advanced on a ground out by Tyler O’Neill. Nolan Arenado smacked a single to plate both.

The Cardinals took an 8-4 lead with a five-run fourth inning. Yadier Molina led off with a double and Edmundo Sosa was hit by a pitch. Tommy Edman doubled to score Molina. Nolan Arenado was intentionally walked, then Sosa scored on a wild pitch. Corey Dickerson singled to plate Edman. Dylan Carlson tripled, scoring Arenado and Dickerson.

Arenado made it 9-4 in the sixth with an RBI double. The Mets scored their final run in the seventh to make it 9-5. In the home half of the seventh, Goldschmidt drove in the Cardinals 10th run.

Tommy Edman

Edman went 3-for-5 with an RBI and three runs scored. Arenado was 3-for-3 with three RBI. Dickerson was 2-for-3 and drove in two. Carlson was 2-for-3 with two RBI.

On the base paths, O’Neill stole his third base of the season and Edman stole his fourth. In the field, O’Neill had an outfield assist at second base and Carlson threw a runner out at third.

The game was marred by an incident that resulted in the bases clearing. Nolan Arenado was brushed back by a high and inside pitch near his head. The pitch was likely intentional and in response to several Mets being hit by pitches in the series, including one to the helmet of Pete Alonso. Arenado took exception to the pitch and had words with and gestured at the pitcher. The benches cleared and in response to the incident Arenado was suspended. Genesis Cabrera, who had hit J.D. Davis in the foot in a prior inning, was also suspended. Each sat out one game. No Mets were suspended, though several players were fined.

Thursday, April 28 – Cardinals 8, Diamondbacks 3

The Cardinals beat the Diamondbacks in the opener of a four-game series at Busch Stadium. Dakota Hudson got the start for the Cardinals and pitched six scoreless innings, allowed one hit, struck out four and walked three to earn his second win of the season.

Dakota Hudson

Aaron Brooks relieved and surrendered three runs in 2 2/3 innings. Nick Wittgren got the final out of the ninth.

The Cardinals took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning on sac flies by Tyler O’Neill and Corey Dickerson. St. Louis increased the lead to 5-0 with three runs in the second. Tommy Edman and Paul Goldschmidt each plated a run on a single. O’Neill drove in his second run on a sac fly.

The score remained 5-0 until the sixth inning. Harrison Bader led off with a single and stole second base. Yadier Molina singled and he also stole second base. Edman singled to score Bader. Goldschmidt singled to plate Molina and Edman. The Cardinals led 8-0.

The Diamondbacks scored two runs in the eighth and one run in the ninth to bring the final score to 8-3 in favor of St. Louis.

Paul Goldschmidt

Goldschmidt went 3-for-3 with three RBI. Edman was 2-for-4 with two RBI and three runs scored. Arenado was 2-for-4. Bader was 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Molina was 2-for-4. The offense had 15 hits, all singles.

Bader stole his fifth base of the season and Molina stole his first.

Friday, April 29 – Cardinals 2, Diamondbacks 6

In the second game of the series with Arizona, the Cardinals fell to the Diamondbacks, 6-2. Adam Wainwright suffered his third loss of the season. The right hander pitched six innings, gave up three runs on four hits, struck out four and walked five.

T.J. McFarland and Andre Pallante combined to pitch the seventh. McFarland surrendered two runs and was replaced by Pallante with one out in the inning. The rookie got the final two outs with no further damage. Kodi Whitley allowed one run in the eighth. Nick Wittgren tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Cardinals took the lead in the first inning on a solo home run by Paul Goldschmidt. In the third, the Diamondbacks put up two runs. Arizona added a run in the sixth, and two more in the seventh to widen their edge to 5-1.

The Redbirds scored one more in the bottom of the seventh. Harrison Bader drew a walk and Yadier Molina singled. Bader went from first to third on the single. With Paul DeJong at the plate, Diamondbacks pitcher Luis Frias balked, and Bader scored.

Arizona added an eighth run in the eighth. St. Louis failed to rally in the final two innings.

The Cardinals offense put up two runs on five hits. Nolan Arenado doubled. Molina, Tommy Edman, and Albert Pujols all singled.

On the base paths, Edman stole his fifth base of the season.

Saturday, April 30 – Cardinals 0, Diamondbacks 2

The Cardinals fell to the Diamondbacks in the third game of the series on Saturday. Miles Mikolas made his second start of the week. The right hander pitched 7 1/3 innings, gave up two runs on four hits and fanned seven.

Genesis Cabrera relieved Mikolas and got the final two outs of the inning. Jake Woodford tossed a scoreless ninth.

The game was scoreless until the eighth inning when Mikolas gave up solo home runs to Ketel Marte and Nick Ahmed to give Arizona a 2-0 lead. After the game, manager Oliver Marmol took responsibility for the loss, saying he should have gone to the bullpen for the eighth.

The Cardinals remained scoreless and managed only two hits for the game – singles from Yadier Molina and Harrison Bader.

Bader stole his NL-leading sixth base of the season. The defense made two errors in the field, throwing miscues by Brendan Donovan and Edmundo Sosa.

Sunday, May 1 – Cardinals 7, Diamondbacks 5

The Cardinals were able to pull out a win in the final game of the series on Sunday for a series split. Jordan Hicks made the start and pitched 3 1/3 innings. The right-hander gave up two runs on two hits, struck out four and walked two.

Andre Pallante relieved and surrendered one run in 1 2/3 innings. Nick Wittgren allowed one run in the sixth. Genesis Cabrera and Kodi Whitley combined to pitch the seventh. Cabrera relinquished one run in 2/3 innings. Whitley got the final out of the inning. Ryan Helsley hurled the final two scoreless innings and struck out four of the six batters he faced.

Ryan Helsley

The Diamondbacks scored first with one run in the first inning. The Cardinals briefly took a 2-1 lead in the third. Andrew Knizner singled but was eliminated on a force out by Paul DeJong. Tommy Edman drew a walk. Harrison Bader reached on a fielder’s choice error and DeJong scored. Edman scored on a force out by Tyler O’Neill.

Arizona quickly tied the game in the fourth, then added runs in the fifth and sixth for 4-2 lead. The Cardinals made it 4-3 in the home half of the sixth on an RBI single by Albert Pujols.

The Diamondbacks scored again in the seventh to make it 5-4. The Cardinals offense persisted and scored four runs in the bottom of the seventh. Knizner singled and DeJong doubled. Brendan Donovan grounded out and Knizner scored. Bader then hit a two-run moonshot to left center field to give the Redbirds a 6-5 lead. Nolan Arenado added a solo home run to make it 7-5.

Harrison Bader

The Diamondbacks were no match for Ryan Helsley in the final two innings. Helsley was throwing gas up to 103 mph and fanned four of the six hitters he faced to close out the win for St. Louis. It was his first save of 2022.

On the base paths, Tyler O’Neill was caught stealing. In the field, Paul DeJong was tagged with a throwing error.

Cardinals players cited for actions in benches clearing incident

The series between the Mets and the Cardinals concluded on Wednesday with a benches-clearing skirmish between the two teams that resulted in suspensions for two Cardinals players and fines for others.

The tension was brewing since the second game of the series when Mets first baseman Pete Alonso was hit in the helmet with an errant changeup from Kodi Whitley. Alonso did not leave the game.

Alonso was not the first Met hit by a pitch in the series but the third. Mark Canha was hit by Miles Mikolas in the first game of the series, and Dominic Smith had been hit two innings before Alonso. Starling Marte was hit by Aaron Brooks in the ninth. The helmet hit to Alonso was the most serious up to that point. Two Cardinals, Brendan Donovan and Tommy Edman, were also hit by Mets pitchers in Game 2. None of the hits to Mets players took any of those players out of the game.

Tensions reached their zenith in the final game of the series on Wednesday. In the eighth inning of the game, Genesis Cabrera hit J.D. Davis with a 96 mph fastball in his left ankle. The injury was enough to take Davis out of the game.

When Nolan Arenado came to the plate to bat in the bottom of the eighth, Mets reliever Yoan Lopez sent a 94 mph fastball up and in near Arenado’s head, brushing him off the plate. Arenado began yelling and gesturing to Lopez and the benches cleared.

The skirmish featured first base coach Stubby Clapp wrestling Alonso to the ground at one point. The tussle ended as quickly as it started, but it resulted in both Arenado and Clapp being ejected from the game.

The consequences of the “brawl” were that Cabrera received a one game suspension and Arenado was suspended for two games. No Mets were ejected or suspended. Lopez received an undisclosed fine for his part in the incident, and both Jack Flaherty and Mets pitcher Taijuan Walker were fined an undisclosed amount for joining the fray while being on the injured list.

Cabrera served his suspension on Friday. Arenado appealed and his suspension was reduced to one game and a fine. He served his suspension on Saturday.

NL Central Standings

The Cardinals have lost five of their last eight and have fallen out of first place, two games behind the Milwaukee Brewers, winners of 11 of their last 14.

Team W L Pct GB
Milwaukee 15 8 0.652
St. Louis 12 9 0.571 2
Chicago 9 13 0.409 5.5
Pittsburgh 9 13 0.409 5.5
Cincinnati 3 19 0.136 11.5

The Big Picture

The Cardinals ended a disappointing week at home with a record of 3-4. The Cardinals won just 1 of 3 from the first-place Mets from the East and split the four-game series with the last-place Diamondbacks from the West.

Nolan Arenado

The offense has shown sluggishness this past week. Two of their losses were shutouts and one was a two-hit shutout. The OPS leaders for the week were Nolan Arenado (1.077), Paul Goldschmidt (.962), and Harrison Bader (.851).

Corner outfielders Dylan Carlson (.308) and Tyler O’Neill (.321) continue to struggle. Paul DeJong (.411) has improved his offense a slight amount from last week but is still far below expectations. The designated hitters – Corey Dickerson (.516) and Albert Pujols (.500) – did not do much, either.

Miles Mikolas

Dakota Hudson and Miles Mikolas continue to be the top starting pitchers. Adam Wainwright hasn’t pitched to expectations since his Opening Day start. His last outing was not good, which included an uncharacteristic five walks. Steven Matz and Jordan Hicks have also been below average.

Ryan Helsley has been the top reliever. The right-hander pitched the final two innings of Sunday’s game and struck out four of the six batters he faced, throwing fastballs clocked at 103 mph. Rookie Andre Pallante has also been good.

Rosters will be cut from 28 to 26 players on Monday, May 2. Teams are allowed to keep 14 pitchers for another month. The likeliest players to be cut are the two most recent callups, pitcher Packy Naughton, and infielder Brendan Donovan, though a Sunday injury to Tommy Edman could change matters.

The Cardinals fell out of first place and have a record of 12-9, two games back of the Brewers. The season is early so it is expected there will be constant movement at the top. The Cardinals and the Brewers are really the only two teams likely to contend for the Division.

The Cardinals must improve in the rotation, and the offense needs to be more consistent. Carlson and O’Neill need to produce. DeJong is being given a long leash for now and is being helped by the fact that Edmundo Sosa has also struggled at the plate. Nolan Gorman is knocking at the door from Triple-A, and while it doesn’t appear the Cardinals are keen on moving Tommy Edman to shortstop for now, Gorman continuing to hit at Memphis could make the decision much harder.

The team plays the Royals for the next three games, a team that has always had extra incentive to beat the superior team from Eastern Missouri. The Cardinals then go to San Francisco to face the always tough Giants, who are only a half game back of the Dodgers and the Padres in the NL West. The Cardinals need to play better than they have the past week to not lose more ground to the streaking Brewers.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 4/25 The Cardinals optioned OF Lars Nootbaar to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/25 The Cardinals recalled 3B Brendan Donovan from the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/28 LHP Genesis Cabrera suspended one game.
  • 4/29 The Cardinals activated LHP Genesis Cabrera.
  • 4/30 3B Nolan Arenado suspended one game.
  • 5/1 The Cardinals activated 3B Nolan Arenado.

Injury Report

  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder. The right hander was placed on the 10-day injured list to begin the season. Flaherty has been throwing at increasing distances on flat ground. On Sunday, John Mozeliak told Bally Sports Midwest that Flaherty is about a week away from his first bullpen session and that the club is optimistic about his recovery.
  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes was placed on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until June. On Sunday, Mozeliak said Reyes is about two weeks behind Flaherty with more news expected mid-May.
  • RHP Drew VerHagen was placed on the 10-day injured list due to a right hip impingement. He received an injection in the hip and is expected to have minimal time away. The right hander will begin a 1-2 start rehab stint with Memphis on Monday night.
  • 2B Tommy Edman was removed from Sunday’s game due to a tight left hip flexor. The move was described as precautionary and not serious with more information expected Monday.

Tommy Edman

Looking Ahead

On Monday afternoon, May 2, the team will play a makeup of a rained out home game against the Royals, then head to KC to play the Royals at Kauffman Stadium in a two- game series. Steven Matz is scheduled to start on Monday. Dakota Hudson gets the start in Kansas City on Tuesday, with Adam Wainwright going on Wednesday.

The Cardinals will extend the road trip on Thursday, heading to San Francisco to play the Giants for four games.

After a travel day on Monday, May 9, the team returns to St. Louis to begin a six-game homestand. The Cardinals will play the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday through Thursday for three, followed by a weekend series against the Giants.

The regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

Jim Edmonds (Getty Images)

This week’s Blast from the Past commemorates the most home runs hit in a month by the Cardinals in franchise history. This feat occurred in April 2000 when the Cardinals ended the month with 55 home runs, which tied the April National League record at that time.

In contrast, the 2022 Cardinals hit just 14 home runs in April.

The following is a breakdown of the April 2000 home runs by game.

April 3 – Craig Paquette (3 runs), Shawon Dunston (solo), Eric Davis (solo)

April 5 – Jim Edmonds (2 runs), Ray Lankford (solo)

April 6 – Fernando Tatis (3 runs), J.D. Drew (solo and grand slam), Mike Matheny (solo)

April 8 – Mark McGwire (solo)

April 9 – Mark McGwire (2 runs), Craig Paquette (solo), Jim Edmonds (solo), Edgar Renteria (solo), Shawon Dunston (solo), J.D. Drew (2 runs)

April 10 – Mark McGwire (2 runs), Edgar Renteria (2 runs), Ray Lankford (solo), J.D. Drew (2 runs)

April 11 – Jim Edmonds (solo), Thomas Howard (grand slam), Edgar Renteria (3 runs)

April 12 – Jim Edmonds (solo), Thomas Howard (2 runs)

April 13 – Placido Polanco (solo), Fernando Tatis (solo), Jim Edmonds (solo)

April 14 – Eric Davis (solo)

April 16 (Game 1) – Placido Polanco (solo), Thomas Howard (solo)

April 16 (Game 2) – Jim Edmonds (3 runs), Eli Marrero (solo)

April 18 – Edgar Renteria (solo)

April 19 – Fernando Tatis (solo), Shawon Dunston (solo)

April 20 – Eli Marrero (solo, grand slam), Rick Ankiel (solo)

April 21 – Fernando Tatis (2 run)

April 22 – Mark McGwire (2 runs), Fernando Tatis (2 runs)

April 23 – Mark McGwire (solo), Placido Polanco (grand slam)

April 25 – Edgar Renteria (solo), Mark McGwire (solo), Ray Lankford (3 runs)

April 26 – Rick Ankiel (3 runs), Jim Edmonds (solo), Fernando Tatis (2 runs)

April 27 – Eric Davis (solo), Mark McGwire (2 runs)

April 29 – Craig Paquette (2 runs)

April 30 – Jim Edmonds (solo), Mark McGwire (2 runs)

In only two games in April were there no home runs, April 7 and April 28.

Mark McGwire (Getty Images)

14 Cardinals went deep that month, led by Jim Edmonds and Mark McGwire with eight each. Fernando Tatis hit six and Edgar Renteria added five.

The current record for home runs in a month in either league is 74 by the Yankees in August 2019. The current NL record is 57 by the Dodgers in August 2020.

The Cardinals tied the 1947 New York Giants for the NL record in 2000. The Braves tied the record with 55 in May 2003, then broke it with 56 in June 2019. The Dodgers broke it again in August 2020 and continue to hold the NL record.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 30, 2022

photo: Matthew Liberatore (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 3-1 on Friday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is Matthew Liberatore, with seven strikeouts in seven scoreless innings in Memphis’ road win. Other standouts include Domingo Robles, Pedro Pages and Mack Chambers.



Results from games played Friday, April 29.

Memphis 2 at Durham 1

The Memphis Redbirds secured a one-run victory on Friday night at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Memphis starter Matthew Liberatore pitched seven scoreless innings for the second consecutive outing. The left hander allowed four hits, fanned seven and walked three to earn his third win.

Matthew Liberatore

Junior Fernandez threw a scoreless eighth. Jake Walsh surrendered one run in the ninth but earned his fifth save.

The Redbirds scored the first run of the game in the fourth inning on a solo home run by Ali Sanchez. Memphis added one in the seventh on a solo shot by Evan Mendoza.

Memphis’ offense scored its two runs on just six hits. Alec Burleson went 2-for-4. Lars Nootbaar and Kramer Robertson singled.

In the field, Burleson had an outfield assist at second base. Liberatore picked a runner off first base. Sanchez picked a runner off second.

Memphis is 12-10 and is in fourth place in the International League West, three games back of first place Columbus.

Saturday’s game:  at Durham, RHP Johan Oviedo (1-2, 9.77) vs. TBA, 5:35 CT.

Springfield 7 at San Antonio 6

The Springfield Cardinals edged the San Antonio Missions in a 7-6 contest on Friday night at Nelson Wolff Stadium. S-Cards’ left-handed starter Domingo Robles pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings, allowed four hits, struck out three and walked one.

Domingo Robles

Cory Thompson came on with two runners in scoring position to secure the final out of the sixth. All six San Antonio runs scored in the seventh. Michael Brettell surrendered five runs and Grant Black allowed one before getting the third out of the long inning. Black was charged with a blown save but was also awarded the win when his offense came back in the eighth. Freddy Pacheco tossed the final two scoreless innings to earn his fourth save.

Springfield took a 4-0 lead in the third inning. Moises Gomez drove in a run on a double. Two more runs scored on a single by Pedro Pages. The fourth run came home on a throwing error.

The Cardinals increased the lead to 5-0 in the top of the seventh. Pages singled and later scored on a single by Todd Lott. In the home half of the seventh San Antonio rallied for six runs to take a 6-5 lead.

Springfield took the lead back in the eighth on an RBI double by Gomez and a sac fly by Pages. Gomez, Pages and Delvin Perez each had two hits. Pages had three RBI and Gomez drove in two.

Pedro Pages

Matt Koperniak, Jordan Walker, and Perez each stole a base.

Springfield has a record of 8-11 and stands in last place in the Texas League North, four games back of first place Tulsa.

Saturday’s game:  at San Antonio, Garrett Williams LHP (0-1, 5.27) vs. TBA, 7:05 CT

Peoria 13, Wisconsin 10

The Peoria Chiefs prevailed in a Friday night slugfest with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers at Dozer Park. Peoria starter Austin Love pitched three innings and gave up six runs on seven hits, struck out four and walked two.

Out of the bullpen, Wilfredo Pereira surrendered three runs in 3 2/3 innings. Leonardo Taveras threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings to earn his second win of the season. Enmanuel Solano started the ninth and walked all three batters he faced. Ryan Loutos allowed a run to score that was charged to Solano but got all three outs for his second save.

Peoria got on the board first with one run in the first inning. Mike Antico doubled, stole third base, and scored on a passed ball. Wisconsin answered in the second inning with five runs on two long balls and added a sixth run in the third inning on a solo home run.

The Chiefs cut the lead to 6-3 in the home half of the third. Antico drove in a run on a single and a second run scored on a sac fly by L.J. Jones. Peoria scored one more in the fourth on a solo home run by Carlos Soto.

The Timber Rattlers made it 7-4 in the fifth. Peoria responded with a run in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run by Jacob Buchberger.

In the seventh, Wisconsin widened their tally by two more runs. The Chiefs then let it rip in the home seventh. Jones doubled to plate a run. Mack Chambers blasted a three-run home run. Masyn Winn tripled to score two and Peoria led 11-9.

Mack Chambers

In the eighth the Chiefs padded their lead to 13-9 on an RBI single by Jones and a ground out by Chambers. Wisconsin attempted to rally in the ninth but added only one run.

Antico, Buchberger, Chamberlain and Jones each had two hits. Jones drove in three and Chambers plated four.

The Chiefs were running wild early as Antico stole three bases, and Buchberger and Winn had two apiece, all in the first three innings. Noah Mendlinger stole his third base of the season but was also picked off first base.

Peoria is 10-9 and is in third place in the Midwest League West, five games back of Cedar Rapids.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Wisconsin, Logan Gragg RHP (0-1, 6.75) vs. Justin Jarvis RHP (1-1, 7.04) 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 0, Jupiter 11

The Palm Beach Cardinals were blanked by the Jupiter Hammerheads in a lopsided contest on Friday night at Roger Dean Stadium. Zane Mills got the start for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched 6 1/3 innings and gave up five runs on six hits, struck out five and walked one.

Alex Cornwell surrendered four runs without recording an out. Bryan Pope followed and threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Nelfri Contreras allowed two runs in the ninth, before Ludwin Jimenez got the final out of the ninth. Mills took the loss.

The Beach Birds offense managed only two hits, singles by Tyler Reichenborn and Jeremy Rivas.

On the base paths, Ramon Mendoza was caught stealing for the first time this season. In the field, catcher Roblin Heredia had a passed ball.

Palm Beach has a record of 8-11 and sits in last place in the Florida State League East, four games back of first place St. Lucie.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Jupiter, Carlos Guarate RHP (0-1, 4.40) vs. TBA 5:00 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 28, 2022

photo: Nolan Gorman (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 2-2 on Wednesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day, 2B Nolan Gorman, went 4-for-5 including two home runs with four RBI in Memphis’ win. Gordon Graceffo and Tommy Jew powered Peoria’s victory.



Results from games played Wednesday, April 27.

Memphis 9 at Durham 6

The Memphis Redbirds won their road contest over the Durham Bulls on Wednesday night by the score of 9-6. Memphis starter Connor Thomas pitched four innings, and gave up two runs on six hits, struck out five and walked one.

Brandon Waddell relieved and surrendered three runs in the fifth. Angel Rondon allowed one run in his two innings.  Junior Fernandez threw a scoreless eighth and Jake Walsh added a scoreless ninth to earn his fourth save. Rondon received the win, his first of the season.

Memphis began the scoring with three runs in the first inning on a two-run home run by Nolan Gorman and an RBI single by Alec Burleson. Durham answered in the home half of the first to decrease the Redbirds lead to 3-1.

Memphis added two runs in the second, on another two-run home run by Gorman. The Bulls scored one in the third and the Redbirds led 5-2.

Nolan Gorman

In the fifth, Juan Yepez’ solo home run widened the Memphis lead to 6-2. Durham posted three runs in the bottom of the fifth to make it 6-5.

Evan Mendoza thumped a solo home run in the sixth to increase the Memphis tally to 7-5. A solo home run by Durham in the bottom half of the sixth restored the one run edge.

The long ball slugfest continued in the seventh with a solo shot by Burleson to make it 8-6. The score became the final of 9-6 in the ninth when Gorman singled and scored on a fielding error.

Gorman went 4-for-5 with four RBI on two home runs, his ninth and 10th of 2022, and three runs scored. Lars Nootbaar was 3-for-5 with two runs scored. Yepez was 2-for-4 and Burleson was 2-for-5 with two RBI.

On the base paths, Conner Capel stole his sixth base of the season.

Memphis has a record of 11-9 and is in fourth place in the International League West, two games back of first place Columbus.

Thursday’s game: at Durham, RHP T.J. Zeuch (0-3, 10.91) vs. RHP Tommy Romero, 5:35 CT

Springfield 1 at San Antonio 4

The Springfield Cardinals fell to the Missions in a 4-1 contest at San Antonio’s Nelson Wolff Stadium on Wednesday night. Starter Dalton Roach pitched seven innings, gave up four runs on six hits and suffered his first loss of the season. The right hander struck out two and walked one.

Johan Quezada relieved and tossed a scoreless eighth.

Springfield scored their only run in the sixth. Chase Pinder drew a walk and Jordan Walker followed with a double to right. Pinder scored on a single by Todd Lott.

The Cardinals offense managed only three hits, the Walker double, the single by Lott and a single by Julio Rodriguez.

On the base paths, Walker was caught stealing for the first time this season.

Springfield is 7-10 and sits in last place in the Texas League North, four games back of first place Tulsa.

Thursday’s game:  at San Antonio, Kyle Leahy RHP (0-2, 11.37) vs. TBA, 7:05 CT.

Peoria 5, Wisconsin 2

The Peoria Chiefs beat the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers in a 5-2 contest on Wednesday at Dozer Park. Gordon Graceffo took the mound for Peoria. The right hander pitched 5 2/3 innings, gave up one run on three hits and fanned nine.

Gordon Graceffo

Nathanael Heredia surrendered one run in 1 2/3 innings of relief and was charged with a blown save. Ryan Loutos tossed the final 1 2/3 scoreless innings to earn his second win of the season.

The Chiefs got on the board with one run in the first inning. Masyn Winn reached on a throwing error and scored on a double by Jacob Buchberger. Peoria increased the lead to 2-0 on a bases loaded walk by Winn.

Wisconsin finally got on the board with one run in the sixth and the tying run in the eighth. In the bottom of the eighth, the Chiefs answered with a three-run home run by Tommy Jew to take a 5-2 lead. The Timber Rattlers failed to answer in the ninth.

Tommy Jew

As the only Chief with multiple hits, Winn was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Jew drove in three.

Four Peoria players had stolen bases – Noah Mendlinger, Francisco Hernandez, Winn, and Mack Chambers. Hernandez, Matt Chamberlain, and Carlos Soto were each caught stealing.

Winn made a fielding error. Mike Antico had an outfield assist at second base.

Peoria is 9-8 and sits in third place in the Midwest League West, five games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Wisconsin, Dionys Rodriguez RHP (0-0, 2.25) vs. Brandon Knarr LHP (1-1, 2.20) 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 3, Jupiter 6

The Palm Beach Cardinals were defeated by the Jupiter Hammerheads in a Wednesday contest at Roger Dean Stadium. Inohan Paniagua got the start for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched five innings and gave up two runs on five hits, struck out six and walked two.

Inohan Paniagua

Hayes Heinecke surrendered one run in two innings of relief. Roy Garcia and Andre Granillo combined to throw the final two innings. They protected the tie until in the ninth when Granillo allowed a three-run shot with two inherited runners on base. Garcia took the loss, his third of the season.

The game was scoreless until the fourth inning when Jupiter got on the board with one run. The Hammerheads increased the lead to 2-0 in the top of the fifth.

The Beach Birds responded with one run in the home fifth. Ramon Mendoza singled, stole third base, and advanced to third on a passed ball. Tyler Reichenborn drove Mendoza home on a single.

Jupiter scored a third run in the top of the sixth, but the Cardinals responded with two runs in the home half of the sixth to tie the game. Adanson Cruz drew a walk. Brandon Hernandez reached on a fielder’s choice, and both advanced a base on a ground out by Hansel Otamendi. Elijah Cabell walked to load the bases. Cruz then scored on a wild pitch, and Hernandez came home on a Mendoza single.

The game remained knotted up until the ninth when the Hammerheads scored three runs.  Palm Beach failed to rally in the bottom half of the inning.

Reichenborn was 3-for-4 with an RBI. Mendoza was 2-for-3 and drove in a run.

Ramon Mendoza

Mendoza also stole two bases. In the field, Cruz had an outfield assist at home plate.

Palm Beach is 7-10 and stands in last place in the Florida State League East, four games back of first place St. Lucie.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Jupiter, Trent Baker RHP (0-2, 4.85) vs. TBA, 5:30 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 27, 2022

photo: Zack Thompson (Memphis Redbirds)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 4-0 on Tuesday, with two shutouts and a 20-2 scoring edge. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is Memphis starter Zack Thompson, who pitched 6 2/3 scoreless with nine punchouts. Teammate Ben DeLuzio went deep twice and made a gem in the outfield.

Results from games played Tuesday, April 26.



Memphis 10 at Durham 0

The Redbirds blanked the Bulls by a whopping 10 runs on Tuesday afternoon at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Zack Thompson got the start for Memphis. The left hander pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings, allowed one hit and one walk and fanned a career high nine.

Zack Thompson

Zach McCallister relieved and threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Blake Parker tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Redbirds posted their first two runs in the second inning on a double by Ivan Herrera and a throwing error. In the third, Nolan Gorman drove in a run on a double, extending his hitting streak to 13 games.

Two long balls by Ben DeLuzio, one in the fourth, a two-run blast, and the second in the fifth, a solo shot, widened the Redbirds lead to 6-0. Conner Capel’s solo home run in the seventh made it 7-0.

Ben DeLuzio

In the ninth, Herrera hit a solo home run, Evan Mendoza plated a run on a double, and a sac fly by Gorman scored the 10th and final run. Juan Yepez, Capel, DeLuzio and Mendoza, each had three hits. Herrera was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Gorman drove in two.

On the base paths, Gorman stole his first base of the season.

Memphis is 10-9 and is in sixth place in the International League West Division, 3.5 games back of first place Nashville.

Wednesday’s game:  at Durham, LHP Connor Thomas (1-0, 2.31) vs. RHP Easton McGee, 5:35 CT.

Springfield 5 at San Antonio 1

The Cardinals beat the Missions 5-1 in a Wednesday night contest at Nelson Wolff Stadium. Connor Lunn started for Springfield. The right hander pitched 6 2/3 innings, gave up one run on four hits, struck out eight and walked one to earn his first win of the season and first at Double-A.

Grant Black threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. Cory Thompson tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Cardinals put three runs on the board to begin the game on a three-run home run by Moises Gomez, his MiLB-leading 10th of the season. San Antonio partially answered with one run in the bottom of the first.

Moisés Gómez

In the second, Chase Pinder singled and later scored on fielding error. The Cardinals added to their 4-1 lead in the third. Chandler Redmond drew a walk. Pedro Pages doubled, and Delvin Perez walked. Nick Dunn plated Redmond on a sac fly.

Pinder went 2-for-5. Gomez was 2-for-3 with three RBI.

On the base paths, Jordan Walker stole his sixth base of the season. Gomez was picked off first base.

Springfield is 7-9 and in last place in the Texas League North, three games back of first place Tulsa.

Wednesday’s game:  at San Antonio, Dalton Roach RHP (1-0, 4.30) vs. TBA 7:05 CT.

Peoria 3, Wisconsin 1

The Chiefs defeated the Timber Rattlers in a Tuesday night game at Dozer Park. Michael McGreevy took the mound for Peoria. The right hander pitched six innings and gave up one run on four hits and fanned nine to earn his first win of the season and first at High-A.

Michael McGreevy

John Beller tossed the final three scoreless innings to earn his second save of the season.

Wisconsin got on the board first with one run in the second inning. In the fifth, the Chiefs jumped ahead with a three-run burst. Mack Chambers singled and he scored on Thomas Francisco’s double. Masyn Winn drew a walk and Jacob Buchberger drove in Francisco and Winn on a single. Buchberger was 2-for-4 with two RBI.

In the field, Chambers made a throwing error. McGreevy picked a runner off first base but also committed a pickoff error.

Peoria is 8-8 and is in third place in the Midwest League West, 4.5 games back of first place Cedar Rapids.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Wisconsin, RHP Gordon Graceffo (2-0, 0.56) vs. Max Lazar RHP (1-0, 4.50) 11:05 am CT

Palm Beach 2, Jupiter 0

The Cardinals shut out the Hammerheads on Tuesday night in 2-0 contest at Roger Dean Stadium. Jose Moreno got the start for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched four scoreless innings, allowed three hits, struck out two and walked four.

Jose Moreno

The Palm Beach bullpen protected the shutout the rest of the way. Ludwin Jimenez relieved and threw two scoreless innings. Edgar Manzo and Gianluca Dalatri combined for the final three scoreless innings. Jimenez got the win.

The Beach Birds posted one run in the first inning. Tyler Reichenborn reached on a throwing error and Sander Mora did as well. Osvaldo Tovalin ground into a force out and Reichenborn scored. The score remained 1-0 until the seventh inning when the Cardinals plated their second run on a double by Hansel Otamendi.

The offense scored two runs on three hits. No Cardinal had multiple hits. Otamendi’s double was the only extra base hit.

On the base paths, Jeremy Rivas was picked off first base. In the field, Brandon Hernandez made a fielding error. Otamendi had an outfield assist at third base. Catcher Roblin Heredia picked a runner off second base.

Palm Beach has a record of 7-9 and sits in last place in the Florida State League East Division, three games back of first place St. Lucie.

Wednesday’s game:  vs Jupiter, Inohan Paniagua RHP (0-1, 1.69) vs. Edgar Sanchez RHP (1-0, 0.82) 5:30 CT.


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – April 18-24

photo: Dakota Hudson (Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports)

The St. Louis Cardinals finished the 6-4 road trip with two 2-1 series wins. The offense cooled as the starting pitching stepped up, led by Dakota Hudson’s 6 2/3 scoreless innings. Tommy Herr’s heroics on “Seat Cushion Night” in 1987 are remembered in our weekly history feature.



Game recaps

Monday, April 18 – Off day

Tuesday, April 19 – Cardinals 5 at Marlins 1

The St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Miami Marlins in the first of a three-game set at Loan Depot Park. Adam Wainwright took the mound for the Cardinals against Marlins hard throwing lefty Jesus Luzardo.

Adam Wainwright

Wainwright pitched 5 2/3 innings and gave up one run on five hits, fanned six and walked two to earn his second win of the season. T.J. McFarland, Ryan Helsley and Giovanny Gallegos combined to throw the final 3 1/3 innings of relief.

St. Louis’ offense got on the board in the second inning on an RBI double by Paul DeJong. DeJong later scored the second run of the inning on a throwing error.

In the third, the Cardinals added two more runs on a single by Tyler O’Neill and a triple by Tommy Edman. Edman drove in the fifth and final run in the fifth inning on a single. Edman went 2-for-4 with two RBI. Albert Pujols was 2-for-3 with two runs scored.

O’Neill and DeJong each stole a base. It was O’Neill’s first and DeJong’s second. Harrison Bader had an outfield assist at second base.

 

Wednesday, April 20 – Cardinals 2 at Marlins 0

The Cardinals blanked the Marlins 2-0 on Wednesday night in Game 2 of the three-game road series. Starter Miles Mikolas pitched five scoreless innings, allowed four hits and struck out five.

Miles Mikolas

Rookie Andre Pallante relieved in the sixth and threw impressive scoreless innings. Genesis Cabrera and Giovanny Gallegos each tossed a scoreless inning. Cabrera picked up his first win of the season and Gallegos earned his third save.

The game was a pitching duel between Mikolas and Marlin’s starter Sandy Alcantara. The stalemate was finally broken in the ninth inning. Tyler O’Neill drew a walk and Nolan Arenado blasted his fifth home run, a two run shot, into left center field to give the Cardinals the lead. The Redbirds had five total hits in the game. Tommy Edman was 2-for-4. Yadier Molina and Harrison Bader each singled.

Nolan Arenado

Paul Goldschmidt stole his second base of the season. Edman stole his first base. Molina made a throwing error.

Thursday, April 21 – Cardinals 0 at Marlins 5

After shutting out the Marlins the previous game, the Marlins reversed the outcome on the Cardinals in Thursday’s series finale. Jordan Hicks made the start. The right hander pitched three innings and gave up one run on two hits, struck out three and walked two. Hicks suffered his first loss of the season.

Drew VerHagen surrendered one unearned run in the fourth. Aaron Brooks threw the next 2 2/3 innings and allowed three runs. Nick Wittgren secured the final out of the seventh. Kodi Whitley tossed a scoreless eighth.

St. Louis’ offense managed five hits, three by Nolan Arenado. Dylan Carlson and Yadier Molina had the other two hits. All five hits were singles.

Paul DeJong committed his first error of the season, a missed catch. Molina had a passed ball.

Friday, April 22 – Cardinals 4 at Reds 2

The Cardinals traveled to Cincinnati to play the Reds in a weekend series. Game 1 on Friday was a 4-2 win for the Redbirds.

Cards starter Steven Matz posted his second win of the season. The left hander pitched five innings and gave up one run on seven hits, fanned six and walked two.

Steven Matz

Nick Wittgren relieved and threw a scoreless sixth. Ryan Helsley followed with 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Genesis Cabrera threw 2/3 scoreless innings. Giovanny Gallegos was tagged with one run in the ninth but received his fourth save of the season.

The Cardinals got on the board in the first inning. Dylan Carlson led off with a single and scored on a single by Paul Goldschmidt with a fielding error. St. Louis added two runs in the fourth on two run single by Goldschmidt.

In the fifth, Lars Nootbaar drove in a run to make it 4-0. The Reds finally scored in the bottom of the fifth and then added a second run in the ninth. Goldschmidt was 3-for-5 and Nolan Arenado was 2-for-4.

Saturday, April 23 – Cardinals 5 at Reds 0

On Saturday, the Cardinals blanked the Reds in Game 2 to win the series at Great American Ballpark. Dakota Hudson pitched well in this start and won his first game of the season.

Hudson went 6 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing only two hits. The right hander’s only blemish was four walks. He also struck out four.

Dakota Hudson

Andre Pallante and Kodi Whitley combined to toss the final 2 1/3 innings.

St. Louis scored in the second inning. Harrison Bader drew a walk, then stole second base. Andrew Knizner singled to plate Bader.

The Redbirds made it 2-0 in the fifth on an RBI single by Corey Dickerson. In the sixth, Knizner doubled, Tommy Edman was hit by a pitch, and Paul Goldschmidt drove in both on a double.

The fifth and last run scored in the eighth. Bader walked, stole second, and then stole third. Bader scored on a Tommy Edman single. Bader was hitless, but walked twice, stole three bases, scored two runs, and had an outfield assist at third base that saved a run.

Knizner, Paul Goldschmidt, and Dylan Carlson each had two hits.

In addition to the three bases stolen by Bader, Lars Nootbaar stole his first base of the season.

Sunday, April 24 – Cardinals 1 at Reds 4

The Cardinals were unable to complete a sweep of the Reds on Sunday in the final game of the series. Adam Wainwright got the start and had to battle his way through five innings. The right hander gave up four runs on eight hits, struck out three and walked three.

T.J. McFarland threw two scoreless innings in relief before Jake Woodford tossed a scoreless eighth. Wainwright took the loss, his second.

The Cardinals offense scored their only run in the sixth inning. Paul Goldschmidt smashed a ground rule double. Tyler O’Neill followed with a double that scored Goldschmidt. Goldschmidt was 2-for-4 in the game. Harrison Bader was 2-for-3.

O’Neill stole his second base of the season. Dylan Carlson had an outfield assist at second base.

NL Central Standings

Team W L Pct GB
St. Louis 9 5 0.643
Milwaukee 10 6 0.625
Pittsburgh 8 8 0.500 2
Chicago 7 9 0.438 3
Cincinnati 3 13 0.188 7

The Big Picture

The Cardinals ended the week with a record of 4-2, taking 2 of 3 from both the Marlins and the Reds. The Redbirds record is 9-5 and they remain in first place in the NL Central over Milwaukee by percentage points.

In their season-long 10-game road trip, the Cardinals went 6-4, splitting with Milwaukee but unable to sweep either Miami or Cincinnati. Yet, the results overall have been good.

The winning formula changed as the hot St. Louis offense cooled off a bit. The two hottest hitters from last week, Nolan Arenado and Tommy Edman, both dropped to sub .800 OPS’s this week. The top performer for the week is Paul Goldschmidt, with an OPS of .832. Andrew Knizner has an OPS of .804 in two games.

Paul Goldschmidt

The strugglers with the bat are Paul DeJong (.381) and Yadier Molina (.286). The offense had to face several tough pitchers this week, most notably Sandy Alcantara of the Marlins, who kept the offense scoreless through eight innings on Wednesday. Hard-throwing rookie Nick Lodolo of the Reds also gave the offense fits.

A major contributor to the week was strong starting pitching, as Miles Mikolas, Steven Matz, and Dakota Hudson had good starts. Jordan Hicks made his first start of the season but was limited to three innings. Adam Wainwright started two games with mixed results. He pitched fine in his first start against the Marlins but struggled on Sunday against the Reds.

The bullpen suffered an injury this week, with Drew VerHagen sidelined on the 10-day IL with a hip impingement. The bullpen has been successful so far in this early season, but the 28 player rosters change to 26 at the end of the month, and two players, most likely pitchers, will have to go. The team will have a tough decision to make, made tougher by the emergence of rookie Andre Pallante, who has pitched well in April. There are a limited number of pitchers with minor league options remaining, however, and Pallante is one of them. Jake Woodford’s use has been very limited and he may benefit by starting regularly at Triple-A.

The Cardinals return home on Monday to take on the Mets, who are in first place in the NL East with a record of 12-5, the best record in baseball currently. They face a tough competitor in Max Scherzer on Monday. After the Mets, the Cardinals play the Diamondbacks, currently in last place in the NL West with a record of 6-10. The Mets will be tough, but Arizona should not be underestimated. The Cardinals just lost a game to the Reds, the worst team in baseball, so there is no sure thing in this sport. Both the offense and the pitching must be at the top of their game.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 4/22 The Cardinals placed RHP Drew VerHagen on the 10-day injured list. Right hip impingement
  • 4/22 The Cardinals recalled LHP Packy Naughton from the Memphis Redbirds.

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes is on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until June.
  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder. The right hander was placed on the 10-day injured list to begin the season. Flaherty has been throwing and a rehab stint is expected but has not been scheduled.
  • RHP Drew VerHagen was placed on the 10-day injured list due to a right hip impingement. He received an injection in the hip and is expected to have minimal time away. The right hander will begin throwing during the coming week, with a bullpen session to occur within a few days.

Looking Ahead

The Cardinals ended the 6-4 road trip and return home to begin an eight-game homestand. The team plays the Mets in a three-game series beginning on Monday. Miles Mikolas will get the Monday start and will face Mets ace Max Scherzer. Jordan Hicks will follow on Tuesday, and Steven Matz will face off against his former team on Wednesday.

Beginning on Thursday, the Cardinals play a four-game set with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

On Monday, May 2 the team will make up a rained out home game against the Royals, then head to KC to play the Royals at Kauffmann Stadium for two.

The Cardinals will extend the road trip next Thursday, heading to San Francisco to play the Giants in a four-game weekend series.

The regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

This week’s Blast from the Past looks at a memorable game that occurred on April 18, 1987. The Cardinals were playing the World Series Champions from the year before, the New York Mets. The Mets and the Cardinals were considered to be the contenders for the National League East Division title that season. The Cardinals considered the Mets (referred to as Pond Scum by the Cardinal faithful) a rival to be reckoned with.

It started as an ordinary April game at Busch Stadium, not particularly meaningful in the sense that it was just 10 games into the season. When it ended, the moniker “ordinary” no longer applied. This was a promotional night, and the fans received a seat cushion as they entered the park that evening.

The pitching matchup was Danny Cox for the Cardinals and Ron Darling for the Mets. Cox, in his fifth season in St. Louis, was coming off a 12-13, 2.90 ERA showing in 1986. Darling, (known to today’s fans as an analyst for the Mets SNY Network, along with Cardinals Hall of Famer Keith Hernandez) had finished the previous season with a record of 15-6 and an ERA of 2.81.

Neither starter would last long. Cox had won his previous two starts and this one began with a scoreless first inning for the right hander. In the second inning he gave up his first run on a single to Mets center fielder Lenny Dykstra. The game unraveled for Cox in the third. With two outs, Cox gave up a double to Daryl Strawberry and walked Kevin McReynolds. The Mets big slugger, Howard Johnson (no connection to the hotel chain) took Cox deep for a three-run home run.

Cox did not return for the fourth inning. Jose Oquendo pinch hit for Cox, and Pat Perry came in to pitch the fourth. Perry gave up one run and the Mets led 5-0.

Darling, on the other hand, had cruised through three innings. When the Cardinals came up to bat in the fourth, everything changed. Darling gave up consecutive singles to Tom Herr, Jack Clark and Willie McGee. Herr scored on McGee’s knock. Jim Lindeman then doubled to score Clark and McGee. Steve Lake plated Lindemann on a single. With two outs and four runs on the board, Darling surrendered a single to Vince Coleman, walked Ozzie Smith, and when the lineup came back around, walked Tom Herr with the bases loaded to score the fifth run to tie the game. After the Herr walk, Darling was replaced by David Cone, who fanned Clark to get the final out.

Ton Herr

The Cardinals took a 6-5 lead in the sixth when Cone walked Smith and Herr doubled to score Smith from first.

The seventh and eighth innings were scoreless on both sides. Todd Worrell had replaced Perry and Cone was replaced by Gene Walter. In the ninth, Worrell walked the first two Mets and was replaced by Bill Dawley. Dawley retired the next two hitters then allowed back to back singles to score the two runners on base and give the Mets a 7-6 lead.

Down one run in the bottom of the ninth, the Cardinals hitters faced veteran lefty Jesse Orosco. Orosco walked Smith. Herr sacrificed Smith to second on a bunt. Smith stole third base and scored on a throwing error by Orosco. The game was tied. Clark and McGee struck out and the game went into extra innings.

Dawley returned to start the 10th. He walked Al Pedrique, who was then bunted over to second base. At that point Dawley was out and Dave LaPoint was in. LaPoint retired his first hitter on a groundout that advanced Pedrique to third. On his next hitter, Tim Teufel, he threw a wild pitch and Pedrique scored to give the Mets an 8-7 lead. La Point walked Teufel but struck out Keith Hernandez to end the inning.

Orosco returned to pitch the bottom of the 10th. He retired Tito Landrum on a groundout but gave up back-to-back singles to Terry Pendleton and Lake (Tom Lawless pinch ran for Lake). Tom Pagnozzi pinch hit for Curt Ford and singled to score Pendleton and tie the game at 8-8.

With the game once again tied, Orosco retired Coleman on a ground out to first, then intentionally walked Smith to load the bases. Tom Herr came to bat. Herr had already reached base four times that evening. Orsoco threw Herr a first pitch fastball, and Herr sent it soaring over the left field wall for the first gram slam of his career.

The Cardinals won the game 12-8 on a walk off as Cardinals fans pummeled the field with thousands of seat cushions. The field was so littered with them that the grounds crew were still picking them up the next day.

Future Cardinals Hall of Famer Herr received the game winning ball from an usher. Manager Whitey Herzog said afterward, “I guess that will be the end of seat cushion day.”  He was right.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 23, 2022

photo: Mack Chambers (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system went 1-3 on Friday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is shortstop Mack Chambers, who went 3-for-5 including a home run, three RBI and two runs scored in Peoria’s win at Cedar Rapids.

Results from games played Friday, April 22.



Memphis 3, Omaha 9

The Memphis Redbirds lost to the Omaha Storm Chasers by a 9-3 score on Friday night at AutoZone Park. The starter for Memphis was T.J. Zeuch. The right hander pitched two innings, gave up five runs, four earned, on seven hits, struck out three and walked five. Zeuch took the loss, his third of the season as his ERA grew to 10.91 over four starts.

Angel Rondon relieved in the third and walked in a run before fanning the side.  He was pulled after a solo home run and a walk to open the sixth. The right-hander allowed two earned runs in his three-plus innings. Kyle Ryan yielded two more runs of his own in the four-run sixth. Blake Parker threw a scoreless seventh, and Zach McAllister tossed the final two scoreless innings.

Zach McAllister

The Storm Chasers posted one run in the first inning to take the early lead. Memphis immediately tied it in the bottom of the first. Kramer Robertson doubled and Cory Spangenberg singled. Robertson scored on a sac fly by Juan Yepez.

Omaha answered with two runs in the second and two runs in the third to go ahead 5-1. In the sixth, the Storm Chasers expanded their lead to 9-1.

The Redbirds started a rally in the eighth but were only able to get two runs closer. An Ivan Herrera RBI single led to the first run and the second scored on a ground out by Clint Coulter. The offense scored their three runs on five hits.

In the field, Robertson made a fielding error, and Herrera had a passed ball.

Memphis has a record of 8-8 and is tied for fifth place with Omaha in the West Division of the International League, four games back of the first place Columbus Clippers.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Omaha, LHP Matthew Liberatore (1-2, 6.28) vs. LHP Austin Cox, 3:05 CT.

Springfield 7, Tulsa 10

The Springfield Cardinals fell to the Tulsa Drillers 10-7 in a Friday night game at Hammons Field. Kyle Leahy took the mound for Springfield. The right hander pitched 3 1/3 innings, gave up eight runs on 10 hits, struck out five and walked one. Leahy took the loss, his second of the season as his ERA grew to 11.37.

Sean Kealey surrendered two runs in 1 2/3 innings of relief. Tyler Pike threw three scoreless innings on one hit, one walk and with two strikeouts. Mike Brettell tossed a clean ninth.

Tulsa took a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Springfield scored one run in the bottom half of the first on a sac fly by Moises Gomez.

In the third, the Cardinals took the lead with a six-run outburst. Chase Pinder hit a solo home run. Gomez then blasted a two-run shot. Chandler Redmond followed with a two-run blast. The final run of the inning came home on a single by Irving Lopez.

The 7-3 lead was short-lived. In the top of the fourth, the Drillers posted their own crooked number, scoring seven runs to retake the lead 10-7. The slugfest ended there, and neither team was able to score further.

Moisés Gómez

Jordan Walker was 2-for-5 and Gomez was 2-for-4 with three RBI. Redmond drove in two.

On the base paths, Walker stole his third base of the season. Delvin Perez swiped his seventh. Gomez was picked off first base.

The Cardinals are 5-8 on the season and is are last place in the North Division of the Texas League, four games back of first-place Tulsa.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Tulsa, Domingo Robles LHP (1-0, 0.75) vs. John Rooney LHP (1-1, 4.66) 5:35 CT.

Peoria 8 at Cedar Rapids 2

The Peoria Chiefs were victorious over the Cedar Rapids Kernels at Perfect Game Field on Friday night. Right-handed starter Dionys Rodriguez pitched four innings and gave up two runs on three hits, fanned five and walked three.

Levi Prater threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief. Wilfredo Pereira added 2 1/3 scoreless innings to earn the win, his first of the season. Nick Trogrlic-Iverson tossed a scoreless ninth.

The Chiefs got on the board first in the third inning on a solo home run by Mack Chambers. Cedar Rapids quickly tied the game in the bottom of the inning.

In the fourth, Mike Antico drove in two runs on a double to give Peoria a 3-1 lead. The Kernels cut the lead to 3-2 in the home half of the frame.

The Chiefs widened their lead to 7-2 in the seventh. Chambers drove in a run on a single and then scored on a single by Aaron Antonini. Tommy Jew drew a walk and stole second. Antonini came home on a throwing error. Thomas Francisco singled to plate Jew. Peoria added an eighth run in the eighth on a second RBI single by Chambers.

Mack Chambers

Chambers went 3-for-5 with three RBI and two runs scored. Francisco was 2-for-4.

On the base paths, Antico, Chambers, Antonini and Jew each stole a base. For Chambers it was his first. Chambers also made a throwing error in the field.

The Chiefs are 7-6 on the season and stand in third place in the West Division of the Midwest League, three games back of Cedar Rapids.

Saturday’s game:  Cedar Rapids, RHP Austin Love (0-1, 9.72) vs. Sawyer Gipson-Long RHP (1-0, 0.00) 2:05 CT.

Palm Beach 2 at Lakeland 9

The Palm Beach Cardinals were defeated by the Lakeland Flying Tigers on Friday night at Publix Field. Palm Beach starter Trent Baker pitched 3 1/3 innings and gave up five runs, four earned, on eight hits, struck out one and walked two. Baker suffered his second loss of the season.

Reliever Roy Garcia surrendered two runs in the fourth. Andrew Marrero started the fifth and issued three walks to load the bases. Marrero was replaced by Alex Cornwell. Cornwell induced a ground ball for one out but two scored on a throwing error by second baseman Brandon Hernandez. Cornwell continued through a scoreless sixth. Edgar Manzo and Hayes Heinecke each tossed a scoreless inning.

Lakeland took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but the Beach Birds tied it in the top of the second on an RBI double by Ryan Holgate. The Flying Tigers retook the lead with a run in the home second.

The Cardinals retied the score in the top of the third on a solo home run by Sander Mora. In similar fashion, Lakeland regained their one run lead in the bottom of the third. The Flying Tigers pushed the lead wider with a four-run fourth.

The Flying Tigers added two more scores in the fifth. Palm Beach was unable to rally in the final innings. Cleanup hitter Jeremy Rivas went 2-for-4 with a run scored but his teammates had just three more hits combined. Palm Beach hitters fanned 13 times, including three by Hernandez batting second.

On the base paths, Rivas stole his first base of the season, while Tyler Reichenborn was caught stealing for the third time.

In the field, Hernandez made a throwing error and Rivas had a fielding miscue. Roblin Heredia had a passed ball.

The Cardinals are 5-8 on the young season and sit in last place in the East Division of the Florida State League, three games behind the first place St. Lucie Mets.

Saturday’s game:  at Lakeland, Zane Mills RHP (0-0, 1.64) vs. TBA 5:00 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 21, 2022

photo: Moises Gomez (Springfield Cardinals)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 0-3 on Wednesday with Peoria’s game postponed. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is Springfield outfielder Moises Gomez, who went 3-for-5 with two runs scored in Springfield’s loss.

Results from games played Wednesday, April 20.



Memphis 6, Omaha 9 (eight innings)

The Memphis Redbirds (7-7) fell to the Omaha Storm Chasers in a Wednesday afternoon contest at AutoZone Park. After an hour rain delay, Zack Thompson took the mound for Memphis. The left hander pitched 4 1/3 innings and gave up five runs on seven hits, struck out three and walked one.

Reliever Blake Parker surrendered two additional runs in the fifth and took the loss. Packy Naughton threw scoreless sixth and seventh innings. Zach McCallister began the eighth and allowed two runs. The game was delayed again at the start of the ninth inning, with Junior Fernandez announced to pitch, but the game was ultimately called before play resumed.

Omaha scored two quick runs on Thompson in the first inning and added a third run in the second. Memphis responded in the bottom half of the second with two runs on RBI singles by Scott Hurst and Brendan Donovan.

The Storm Chasers increased the lead with one run in the third to make it 4-2. In the bottom frame of the third a two-run long ball by Cory Spangenberg tied the game at 4-4 and Hurst hit his second RBI single to make it 5-4.

Cory Spangenberg

Omaha stormed back with three solo home runs, one against Thompson and the other two against Parker to retake the lead 7-5. Justin Toerner made it 7-6 on a sac fly.

The Storm Chasers added two unanswered runs in the eighth. The rain came and the game was called, with the Redbirds defeated 9-6. Ali Sanchez went 2-for-4. Toerner was 2-for-2 and Hurst was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Spangenberg drove in two. Nolan Gorman singled, but his home run streak ended at five games.

Clint Coulter had an outfield assist at home plate.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Omaha, LHP Connor Thomas (0-0, 1.50) vs. RHP Jackson Kowar, 6:45 CT.

Springfield 5, Tulsa 7

The Springfield Cardinals (4-7) were defeated by the Drillers at Hammons Field on Wednesday night. Connor Lunn suffered his second loss of the season. The right hander pitched 4 2/3 innings, gave up six runs on 10 hits, fanned seven and walked one.

Cory Thompson threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. Kevin Marnon surrendered one run in 2/3 of an inning and Grant Black tossed the final 2 1/3 scoreless innings on one hit with two strikeouts.

Tulsa got on the board with two runs each in the third and fourth innings. The Cardinals scored for the first time in the bottom of the fourth. Moises Gomez singled and walks by Malcom Nunez and Todd Lott loaded the bases. Gomez scored when Julio Rodriguez drew a free pass.

Moisés Gómez

The Drillers increased their lead to 6-1 in the fifth. Springfield scored three in the sixth to cut the lead to 6-4 on a two-run single by Rodriguez and a force out from Roberto Baldoquin.

Julio Rodriguez

Tulsa scored again in the seventh to make it 7-4, but the Cardinals answered in the bottom frame with a run on an RBI single by Chandler Redmond. A ninth inning rally with Jordan Walker on third base with one out, fell short as the final two batters struck out.

Gomez went 3-for-5 with two runs scored. Walker was 2-for-5. Rodriguez drove in three.

In the field, Walker made a throwing error, his third of the season.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Tulsa, Dalton Roach RHP (0-0, 2.08) vs. Gus Varland RHP (0-1, 5.68) 6:35 CT.

Peoria at Cedar Rapids (postponed)

The game between Peoria (6-4) and Cedar Rapids was postponed due to rain. It will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Thursday.

Thursday’s games:  at Cedar Rapids (Game 1), RHP Michael McGreevy (0-0, 0.00) vs. Sean Mooney RHP (0-0, 6.00) 5:30 CT; (Game 2), RHP Gordon Graceffo (2-0, 0.82) vs. RHP Casey Legumina

Palm Beach 0 at Lakeland 9

The Palm Beach Cardinals (5-6) were blanked by the Flying Tigers by 9-0 score on Wednesday night at Lakeland’s Publix Field. Jose Moreno made the start for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched four innings, gave up two runs, one earned, on four hits, struck out three and walked three. He suffered his first loss of the season.

Ludwin Jimenez relieved and surrendered three runs in the fifth. Newcomer Bryan Pope threw a scoreless sixth. Nelfri Contreras allowed four unearned runs in the seventh and Alex Cornwell tossed a scoreless eighth.

Luis Rodriguez

The Beach Birds offense had just five hits, including a double by Osvaldo Tovalin. Luis Rodriguez singled twice in four at-bats. The Cards were 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranded nine runners.

The Cardinals committed three errors that led to the five unearned runs. Franklin Soto made a throwing error, Tovalin had a fielding miscue, and Contreras had a missed catch error.

Thursday’s game:  at Lakeland, Ihohan Paniagua RHP (0-0, 1.80) vs. TBA 5:30 CT.


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Peoria Chiefs Notebook – 2022 Week 2


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History of Labor Struggles in MLB: A Turbulent Decade Begins

photo: Marvin Miller

The Cardinal Nation’s series highlighting the history of labor struggles in MLB continues with multiple contentious CBA negotiations and the 1981 strike. Author Marilyn Green is a retired attorney with background in employment law.



As outlined in Part 9 of this series, the end of the decade of the 1970s brought huge gains for the MLB Players Association with the right to free agency granted by arbitration decision and a new Basic Agreement that gave new rights to players.  The gains came at a cost as the decade turned over and more negotiations for a new Basic Agreement were underway.

The last Agreement of the 1970s expired on New Year’s Eve 1979.  As that date approached, it was clear from the increasingly tense relationship between the union and the owners that a major showdown was looming.  The owners remained defiant in the wake of their setbacks from the prior Agreement.  The owners strongly resented what they felt was interference in their business by the MLBPA and they were dead set on clawing back some of what they lost in the 1976 Basic Agreement.

In anticipation of the upcoming negotiations, the owners voted to assemble a “strike fund” of $3.5 million generated by 2% of the gate receipts from the previous season.  The owners also procured strike insurance from Lloyd’s of London.  In response, the union set aside $1 million from licensing revenues for their own emergency fund.

Bowie Kuhn

Commissioner Bowie Kuhn took the bold step of meeting with MLBPA head Marvin Miller for the purpose of extracting some kind of promise from Miller to “throw” the upcoming negotiations on the basis of an alleged payroll crisis for the owners.  Miller of course refused, in words that were less than refined, according to Kuhn.  The request served one purpose, that of a warning signal to the union that a war was on the horizon.

Miller saw these negotiations as likely the last before he retired, and his resolve was hardened even more than usual.  He dismissed Kuhn’s claim of owner poverty as laughable. As the end of the year neared, Miller made his demands clear; the players wanted a lowering of free agency eligibility to four years, a pension boost, a raise of the minimum salary to $40,000 and an elimination of the five-year waiting time for a repeat free agency.

The owners countered, via their new negotiator Ray Grebey, with draconian demands for the end of salary arbitration, a pay scale for players with less than six years of service, and more compensation for loss of free agent players in the form of replacement players from the signing teams.

The MLBPA responded to what they considered outrageous demands with a strike date of April 1, 1980.  The owners dropped their demand for a salary scale shortly after.  Nevertheless, the owners persisted in publicly crying poverty, even at the risk of an NLRB complaint and subpoenas to open their books to back up their claims.

Despite the bluster from both sides, by the end of March both the union and the owners agreed to submit their disputes to nonbinding arbitration.  The MLBPA offered to remove the strike threat on the condition that the owners committed to bargaining in good faith on all issues except free agent compensation.  That issue would be punted until the negotiations on the next Basic Agreement.

The union’s offer was rejected by the owners.  As initially promised, the players walked out of their spring training camps on April 1.  The cancellation of regular season games was a virtual certainty.  The MLBPA made one last offer, that they would the resume the regular schedule as long as an agreement was reached by May 22.  If no agreement was reached, they would walk out again on May 23.

Ken Moffett

The negotiations, facilitated by arbitrator Ken Moffett, descended into a standoff over the issue of free agent compensation.  Moffett suspended the talks twice for a cooling off period.  In the early morning hours of May 23, Miller and Grebey agreed to a one-year interim agreement.  The agreement sketched out raises in the minimum salary and increased pension contributions.  Free agent compensation was assigned to a study group that would issue a report at the end of the year.

In addition, if no final agreement was reached by February 19, 1981, the owners would have the power to unilaterally impose their last offer on free agent compensation.  The union would have until March 1, 1981 to file a formal objection and then vote on a strike to take place no later than June 1, 1981.

The union ratified the interim agreement and the 1980 season proceeded as scheduled.  The joint study committee accomplished nothing by the end of the year deadline. Further negotiations in early 1981 also were fruitless.  On February 19, the owners’ free agent compensation plan took effect.  The players reported for spring training and played out the schedule, with a strike date of May 29.

The MLBPA filed an NLRB grievance over the owner’s claims of poverty and a request for injunction for the owners to open their books was filed in federal court.  The filing caused a postponement of the strike date.  However, on June 10 the federal judge denied the injunction.  The players went out on strike on June 12, 1981.

Negotiations for a final agreement resumed but only three meetings took place in the first week of the strike.  Miller, always a lightning rod for the owners, withdrew from the negotiations to try to cool things off.  He was replaced by players Mark Belanger, Doug DeCinces, Bob Boone, and Steve Rogers as well as union counsel Don Fehr.

Miller returned to the talks on July 1.  The All-Star Game, set for July 14, was postponed.  The U.S Secretary of Labor asserted himself into the negotiations at the request of one of the owners.  Still no agreement was reached but there was some momentum for a proposal by the union for pooled compensation as opposed to compensation from the signing team.  By the end of July an agreement was reached on pooled compensation.

The strike lasted 50 days, 712 games were cancelled, and the season was split into two halves.  The union ratified the agreement on August 2. Principals were Kuhn, Grebey, Orioles owner Edward Bennett Williams, and Astros owner John McMullen for the owners.  For the union, Miller, Moss, and Fehr were principals.

The agreement was for four years with an expiration date of December 31, 1984.  The provisions were:

  • Free agent eligibility remained at six years.
  • Teams losing free agents would receive compensation from a pool of players with rankings as Type A and Type B players. The players in the pool are from unprotected players from the rosters of teams that sign free agents.  In addition to a pool player, the losing team receives a draft pick.
  • Salary arbitration remains at two years of service time.
  • Minimum salary raises: $30,000 (1980), $32,500 (1981), $33,500 (1982), $35,000 (1983), and $40,000 (1984).
  • Right to demand trade remains the same as prior agreement.
  • Pension contributions raised to $15.5 million.

Marvin Miller, who rescued the MLBPA from obscurity and built the union into what it remains to this day, retired at the end of 1982.  He remained on in a consulting capacity for new Executive Director Kenneth Moffett, the federal arbitrator who had facilitated the 1981 Agreement.  Even before Miller officially stepped down, rumors circulated that the owners, with the ink still fresh on the Basic Agreement, were already colluding to keep free agent salaries down.

The reign of Moffett began poorly and was short-lived.  He refused Miller’s counsel and would not relocate to the offices in New York.  Though Miller had contracted to consult, Moffett locked him out of the MLBPA offices.  Moffett gave the players every indication that he was not going to work hard for them, so in September 1983, the Executive Committee voted to fire Moffett.

Don Fehr

Miller returned temporarily to guide the MLPA until a new Executive Director was hired.  The MLBPA decided on assistant counsel Donald Fehr as acting director, and he was made the official Executive Director in December 1985.

The other side was going through a transition as well.  Bowie Kuhn, who had held the office of Commissioner since 1969, fell into disfavor.  The owners were unhappy over Kuhn’s handling of the 1981 strike, and when Kuhn declared war on some players for their drug use, suspending four Kansas City Royals players for one year without the due process required in MLB’s Joint Drug Policy, the owners had enough.  The suspensions were overturned by an arbitrator and Kuhn was out the door.

Peter Ueberroth

New commissioner Peter Ueberroth was selected by the owners in March 1984, but did not officially take office until October.  Negotiations were underway for a new Basic Agreement with the expiration of the existing Agreement set for December 31.  As usual, talks were tense and moving at a snail’s pace.  Ueberroth was met with a potential umpire’s strike upon taking his post but was able to avert that by granting raises to the umpires.  His entry into the snake pit of Basic Agreement talks would not be so easy.

Owners were once again claiming poverty but unlike in prior years, they suddenly announced in February 1985 a willingness to open their books to the union.  Knowing it would take time to go through the voluminous documents, the union agreed to start the season on time while continuing the negotiations. However, on June 4, Fehr announced that a strike would be called if no agreement was reached by August 6.

In mid-June, the economics expert hired by the union to examine the owners’ finances issued a report that basically said baseball was in good shape financially with robust growth, but that players’ salaries had declined substantially.  Unsurprisingly, the owners responded with their own expert who reported that baseball was heading for a huge financial loss.

The two sides were at a stalemate.  When games concluded on August 6, the players went on strike.  This was the shortest stoppage in baseball history, as two days later an agreement was announced.  The cancelled games would be made up in doubleheaders.

The new Basic Agreement was a five-year agreement to expire on December 31, 1989. Principals to the agreement were Ueberroth, Committee Chairman Lee McPhail, and General Counsel Barry Rona for the owners.  The union was represented by Fehr, Associate General Counsel Gene Orza, and Special Assistant to the Executive Director Mark Belanger.

The provisions were:

  • Free Agency – The free agent draft was eliminated, allowing free agents to negotiate with all clubs.
  • Free Agency Compensation – Player compensation was eliminated. Compensation would be draft picks only.
  • Salary Arbitration – Service time for arbitration was raised to three years beginning in 1987.
  • Drug Testing – The parties agree to create an independent committee to oversee player drug issues and discipline. The union retained the right to challenge disciplinary action through grievance.
  • Minimum salary – Increase to $60,000 with cost of living adjustments in subsequent seasons. Minimum is $62,500 for 1987 and 1988 and $68,000 for 1989.
  • The players receive a cut of World Series pool.
  • League Championship Series will remain at seven games through the end of the Agreement.
  • Pension – Increase in owner contribution to $33 million each year from 1985-88. Increase to $39 million in 1989.

The media declared this Agreement to be another victory for the union.  Many players saw it differently and were upset that they had given up the additional year for arbitration.  Mistrust in Fehr began to grow. The 1985 Agreement was never put in writing.

The owners were even more unhappy.  Their unhappiness led them to do something over the next several years that resulted in one of the greatest scandals in baseball since the Black Sox scandal in 1919 one that would be costly to its perpetrators.

To be continued…

Prior articles in this series

History of Labor Struggles in Major League Baseball: The Early Years

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Rise of the AL and Road to Antitrust Exemption

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Supreme Court and Baseball’s Antitrust Exemption

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: Post World War II

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The MLBPA and Marvin Miller

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The First Collective Bargaining Agreement

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Fight for Free Agency

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The End of the Reserve System

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Free Agency Era Begins


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TCN’s Monthly Cardinals Top 50 Prospect Rankings – April 2022


2022 Prospect Guide now available

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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 20, 2022

photo: Nolan Gorman (Springfield Cardinals)

The St. Louis Cardinals system went 1-3 on Tuesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day Nolan Gorman hit his seventh home run of the season backing Johan Oviedo’s strong start in Memphis’ home win over Omaha.

Results for games played Tuesday, April 19.



Memphis 2, Omaha 1

The Memphis Redbirds (7-6) topped the Omaha Storm Chasers by a 2-1 score at AutoZone Park on Tuesday night. Johan Oviedo earned his first win of the season. The right hander pitched six innings and gave up just one run on three hits, struck out four and walked three.

Johan Oviedo

Angel Rondon relieved and threw a scoreless seventh. Brandon Waddell pitched a scoreless eighth and Jake Walsh tossed a scoreless ninth to earn his third save.

Omaha put up its first and only run in the second inning. Memphis tied the game in the fifth on an RBI single by Ben DeLuzio. The Redbirds took the 2-1 lead in the sixth on a solo home run by Nolan Gorman. Gorman’s long ball, his seventh in the last seven games, was the only extra base hit for the Redbirds.

Nolan Gorman

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Omaha, LHP Zack Thompson vs. (0-0, 3.86) vs. RHP Daniel Mengden, 11:05 am CT.

Springfield 2, Tulsa 4

The Springfield Cardinals (4-6) fell to the Tulsa Drillers on Tuesday night at Hammons Field. Garrett Williams started on the mound for Springfield and pitched 4 1/3 innings. The left hander gave up four runs on five hits, fanned seven and walked two.

Edgar Escobar threw the final 4 2/3 scoreless innings in relief, allowing no runs on three hits and two walks with six strikeouts. Williams took the loss, his first of the season.

Edgar Escobar

Springfield got on the board in the first inning on an RBI single by Malcom Nunez. Tulsa tied the game in the third inning, then two innings later took a 4-1 lead.

The Cardinals added their final run in the sixth on a double by Pedro Pages. Pages went 2-for-4 with an RBI and Moises Gomez also was 2-for-4.

In the field, catcher Pages made a throwing error, his first error of the season.

Wednesday’s game: vs. Tulsa, Connor Lunn RHP (0-1, 3.97) vs. Michael Grove RHP (0-0, 2.45) 6:35 CT.

Peoria 3 at Cedar Rapids 4

The Peoria Chiefs (6-4) were edged by the Kernels in a 4-3 contest at Cedar Rapids’ Perfect Game Field on Tuesday night. Peoria starter Logan Gragg pitched four innings, gave up two runs on five hits, struck out four and issued one free pass.

Nathanael Heredia surrendered two runs in 2 2/3 innings of relief. The left hander took the loss, his first of the season. Leonardo Taveras tossed the final 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

The Chiefs put the first run on the board in the top of the first inning. Masyn Winn tripled and scored on a sac fly by Aaron Antonini. In the bottom of that inning Cedar Rapids tied the game at 1-1.

Masyn Winn

The Kernels took a 2-1 lead in the second inning, but Peoria reknotted the score at 2-2 in the fourth. The inning began with a double by Winn. Matt Chamberlain drew a walk and Tommy Jew followed with a single to plate Winn.

Cedar Rapids regained the lead with two runs scored in the sixth. In the seventh, the Chiefs decreased the Kernels lead to 4-3. Jew walked, advanced to second on a wild pitch, stole third base, and scored on a sac fly by Thomas Francisco. Peoria was unable to rally further in the final two innings.

The Peoria offense had just six hits and fanned 13 times. Winn doubled, tripled and scored twice. Jew had an RBI single and his teammates Jacob Buchberger, Matt Chamberlain, and Noah Mendlinger each singled. Chamberlain was the only starter to avoid being punched out.

On the base paths, Jew stole his third base of the season. Mendlinger was picked off first base.

Wednesday’s game:  at Cedar Rapids, RHP Michael McGreevy (0-0, 0.00) vs. Sean Mooney RHP (0-0, 6.00) 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 2 at Lakeland 3

The Palm Beach Cardinals (5-5) were edged by the Flying Tigers in a Tuesday night contest at Lakeland’s Publix Field. Carlos Guarate made the start for Palm Beach and pitched five innings. The right hander gave up two run on two hits, struck out six and walked two.

Hayes Heinecke pitched the sixth and surrendered one run. He took the loss. Edgar Manzo tossed the final two scoreless innings.

The Beach Birds got on the board first with one run in the top of the third inning on an RBI single by Wade Stauss. Lakeland quickly tied it up in the home half of the inning.

The Cardinals regained the lead in the fourth on an RBI triple by Tyler Reichenborn. In the fifth, the Flying Tigers knotted it up again at 2-2, then took the lead 3-2 in the sixth. Palm Beach failed to answer.

Tyler Reichenborn

Leadoff man Reichenborn went 2-for-5 with an RBI. Jeremy Rivas was 2-for-4. The Beach Birds had 10 strikeouts and were 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position.

On the base paths, Reichenborn was picked off and caught stealing. In the field, Reichenborn had an outfield assist at second base. Catcher Roblin Heredia picked a runner off second base. He also had a passed ball.

Wednesday’s game:  at Lakeland, Jose Moreno RHP (0-0, 1.80) vs. TBA 5:30 CT.


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TCN’s Monthly Cardinals Top 50 Prospect Rankings – April 2022


Now Available – 2022 Cardinals Prospect Guide

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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – April 11-17

photo: Steven Matz (Jeff Curry/USA TODAY Sports)

The St. Louis Cardinals split the weekend series in Milwaukee and hold a small division lead. Nolan Arenado and Tommy Edman are pacing the offense and Miles Mikolas and Steven Matz made strong starts. We highlight key events in this week in team history.



Regular season recaps

Monday, April 11 – Cardinals vs. Pirates (postponed)

The final game of the opening series at Busch Stadium was postponed due to rain. It will be made up on June 14 as part of a doubleheader.

Tuesday, April 12 – Cardinals 6, Royals 5

The Cardinals topped the Royals 6-5 in the first of a two game home series. Dakota Hudson got the start for St. Louis. The right hander pitched four innings, gave up three runs on five hits and struck out four.

Jordan Hicks tossed two scoreless innings of relief with two strikeouts and one walk to earn the win. Nick Wittgren surrendered one run in seventh and Genesis Cabrera allowed one run in the eighth. Giovanny Gallegos threw a scoreless ninth to earn his first save.

Albert Pujols gave the home crowd what it was waiting for, his first home run in a Cardinals uniform since 2011. Pujols’ solo blast followed a two-run home run by Nolan Arenado in the first inning.

The Royals tied the game in the second on two home runs, a solo shot and a two-run blast. Andrew Knizner gave the lead back to the Cardinals with a three-run moonshot in the fourth.

Andrew Knizner

Kansas City rallied with single runs in the eighth and ninth, but the attempt fell short. The Redbirds held on for the 6-5 win. Pujols went 3-for-4 with two singles in addition to the home run. Tommy Edman was 2-for-4. Arenado had two RBI.

Wednesday, April 13 – Cardinals vs. Royals (postponed)

The conclusion of the two-game series with the Royals was postponed due to rain. It will be made up on May 2, previously an off day for both teams.

Thursday, April 14 – Cardinals 1 at Brewers 5

The Cardinals fell to the Brewers in the opener of a four-game series at American Family Field on Thursday. Adam Wainwright made his second start of the season. The right hander’s outing did no go as well as his opening day start. He pitched 4 1/3 innings and gave up four runs on eight hits, fanned seven and walked two. Wainwright suffered his first loss of the season.

Drew Verhagen relieved Wainwright and threw 2 2/3 innings. He gave up one run in his Cardinals debut. Aaron Brooks tossed a scoreless eighth.

The Redbirds’ only run came via a solo home run by Tommy Edman in the eighth inning. The Cardinals managed only five total hits with Edman’s long ball the only extra base hit.

Albert Pujols was caught at third base in his first stolen base attempt of the season.

Friday, April 15 – Cardinals 10 at Brewers 1

The Cardinals offense rebounded from the previous day’s loss with a 10-1 win over the Brewers on Friday at American Family Field. Miles Mikolas got the start for St. Louis. The right hander pitched 6 2/3 innings and gave up one run three hits, struck out seven and walked one to earn his first win of the season.

Miles Mikolas

Nick Wittgren got the final out of the seventh. Rookie Andre Pallante tossed the final two scoreless innings.

St. Louis’ offense amassed 14 hits. In the first inning, Harrison Bader drove in two runs on a single. Andrew Knizner followed with a two-run single to give St. Louis a 4-0 lead.

In the second inning, Dylan Carlson was hit by a pitch and Paul Goldschmidt drove him in on a double. Nolan Arenado plated Goldschmidt on a single.

The Redbirds took a 6-0 lead into the fifth and added to it with a two-run home run by Tommy Edman. The Brewers finally got on the board with one run in the seventh to make it 8-1.

Arenado blasted a two-run home run in the ninth to increase the lead to 10-1. Knizner went 3-for-5 with two RBI. Tyler O’Neill was 3-for-5 with two runs scored. Arenado was 2-for-3 with three RBI. Bader was 2-for-5 with two RBI. Edmundo Sosa was 2-for-5. Edman had two RBI.

Bader stole his first base of the season.

Saturday, April 16 – Cardinals 2 at Brewers 1

The Cardinals won their second consecutive game against the Brewers in a close contest on Saturday. Steven Matz took the mound for St. Louis. The right hander pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings, allowed three hits and fanned six to earn his first win as a Cardinal.

Steven Matz

Ryan Helsley relieved Matz and got the final out of the sixth inning. Genesis Cabrera surrendered one run in 1 2/3 innings. Giovanny Gallegos tossed the final 1 1/3 scoreless innings to earn his second save.

Every hitter in the starting lineup got one hit except Paul Goldschmidt, but no Cardinal had multiples. St. Louis scored its first run in the fourth inning on an RBI double by Paul DeJong. The second run came home in the eighth on a single by Corey Dickerson.

Sunday, April 17 – Cardinals 5 at Brewers 6

The Cardinals split the series with the Brewers due to the 6-5 loss on Sunday in Milwaukee. Dakota Hudson started for St. Louis. The right hander pitched three innings and gave up four runs, three earned, on four hits while striking out two and walking two. Hudson suffered his first loss of the season.

T.J. McFarland relieved and threw a scoreless fourth. Jordan Hicks followed and hurled two scoreless innings. Drew VerHagen surrendered two runs in the seventh. Kodi Whitley tossed a scoreless eighth.

Milwaukee scored three runs off Hudson in the first inning. In the third, Dylan Carlson reached on a fielding error and Nolan Arenado walked. Albert Pujols then blasted his 681st career home run into the upper deck in left field to tie the game at 3-3.

The Brewers regained the lead in the fourth with one run, then widened the lead with two in the seventh to make it 6-3. The Cardinals came back in the eighth with two runs to decrease the lead to 6-5 on Tommy Edman’s RBI single and a bases loaded walk by Corey Dickerson.

Brewers closer Josh Hader shut the Cardinals down in the ninth.

Arenado went 2-for-4 with a double and a single. Pujols drove in three.

On the base paths, Paul DeJong stole his first base of the season. In the field, Edman and Andrew Knizner both committed throwing errors.

NL Central Standings

Team W L Pct GB
St. Louis 5 3 0.626
Chicago 5 4 0.556 0.5
Pittsburgh 5 4 0.556 0.5
Milwaukee 5 5 0.500 1
Cincinnati 2 8 0.200 4

The Big Picture

The Cardinals finished their first full week of the season with a record of 3-2. They won one from the Royals with the second game postponed. The Cardinals split the four-game series with the Brewers 2-2. The final game of the Pirates series on Monday was postponed.

The Cardinals are in first place in the NL Central with a record of 5-3. Chicago and Pittsburgh are a half game behind the Cardinals in this early season. The Reds are in last place with a record of 2-8, four games back of the Cardinals.

Nolan Arenado

The offense has been mostly good, with Nolan Arenado and Tommy Edman leading the week with an OPS of 1.333 and 1.090 respectively in five games. Albert Pujols posted an OPS of 1.683 in three games. Paul Goldschmidt (.195 OPS) and Dylan Carlson (.212 OPS) struggled in the five games.

Tommy Edman

The starting pitching this past week was adequate. Steven Matz had the best start, allowing no runs in a 5 2/3 inning outing. Miles Mikolas gave up only one run in his 6 2/3 inning start. Dakota Hudson has struggled out of the gate with an ERA of 7.71 in two starts.

The back end of the rotation needs to improve. With Jack Flaherty out presumably for several weeks to a month, the rotation is in flux. Jordan Hicks is scheduled to get a start next week. The fourth starter, Hudson, has been unimpressive. With only three relatively stable starters, the rotation is the team’s current weak point.

The bullpen is much better, with Drew VerHagen being the weak link so far. VerHagen has an ERA of 7.36 in two games and three walks in 3 2/3 innings pitched. The season is early, however, so numbers in two outings don’t mean much.

Starting Tuesday, the Cardinals will play a three-game set against the Marlins in Miami and end the week with three versus the Reds in Cincinnati. The Marlins have a record of 4-5 and are in third place in the NL East. The Reds have played poorly in 10 games so far, but they always match up against the Cardinals well, so don’t count them out. Taking both series is the goal here.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

There are no transactions to report.

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes was placed on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until at least June.
  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder. The right hander was placed on the 10-day injured list to begin the season. Flaherty had a throwing session from 120 feet over the weekend at American Family Field and will likely have several more before a rehab stint is considered.
  • C Yadier Molina (right knee soreness) was kept out of the final three games of the Brewers season due to general soreness and pain in his right knee. Molina is considered day to day.

Looking Ahead

The Cardinals have an open day on Monday in Miami.

A three-game series with the Marlins begins on Tuesday. Jordan Hicks is scheduled to make the Tuesday start. No pitchers have been announced for the remainder of the series but will likely be Adam Wainwright and Miles Mikolas.

The Cardinals will then travel to Cincinnati for a weekend series with the Reds.

The following week, the Cardinals return to St. Louis to begin an eight-game homestand that includes three games against the Mets, four with the Diamondbacks, and one makeup contest with the Royals.

The full regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

We continue our “remember when” series with notable events in franchise history during the period April 11 to April 17.

Bill Virdon

April 11, 1954 – The Cardinals traded Enos Slaughter to the Yankees for Bill Virdon. Slaughter was at the tail end of his career, but Virdon was named the National League Rookie of the year in 1956.

April 11, 1962 – The New York Mets debuted as a team and played their first game against the Cardinals, who beat the Mets 11-4 in Busch Stadium.

April 11, 2019 – Harrison Bader became the first Cardinal since RBI stats were recorded in 1920, to have two RBI on two hit by pitches in the same game.

April 12, 1960 – In the first ever game played at Candlestick Park, the Giants beat the Cardinals 3-1. During the third inning, the umpires filed a protest concerning the foul poles, which were completely within fair territory.

April 13, 1954 – Tom Alston became the first Black player to appear in a Cardinals uniform.

Wally Moon

April 13, 1954 – Wally Moon became the second player in Cardinals history to hit a home run in his first major league at bat. Moon was named Rookie of the Year that season and also hit a home run in his last at bat in 1954.

April 14, 1936 – Eddie Morgan became the first player in Cardinals history to hit a home run in his first at bat. Pinch-hitter Morgan did it in the seventh inning of a 12-7 loss to the Cubs.

April 14, 1969 – The Montreal Expos played their first ever home game against the Cardinals. It was the first ever regular season game played outside the United States. Expos pitcher Larry Jaster threw the first pitch to Cardinals’ leadoff hitter Lou Brock. The Expos beat the Cardinals 8-7.

April 14, 1993 – Cardinals reliever Lee Smith broke the NL record for saves with his 301st save.

Mark McGwire (Getty Images)

April 14, 1998 – Mark McGwire became the first Cardinal to have a three-home run game at Busch Stadium.

April 15, 1959 – Bob Gibson made his major league debut in Los Angeles. He gave up a home run to the first batter faced, Dodger third baseman Jim Baxes.

April 15, 2018 – The Cardinals swept the Cincinnati Reds in four games, the first time they swept the Reds in four games since 1949.

April 16, 1913 – A game between the Reds and the Cardinals was called in the seventh inning because the Reds had to catch a train to their next game in Pittsburgh.

Bob Forsch

April 16, 1962 – In a game between the Cardinals and the Phillies, both starters, Bob Gibson and Cal McLish, were pulled from the game in the first inning for allowing six runs.

April 16, 1978 – Bob Forsch threw a no-hitter against the Phillies. Forsch’s brother Ken, a pitcher for the Astros, tossed a no-hitter against the Braves, becoming the first siblings to throw no-hitters in the majors.

April 17, 1945 – Red Schoendienst made his major league debut in a game against the Cubs. He went 1-for-4.

April 17, 2010 – The Mets beat the Cardinals 2-1 in a 20-inning game.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 16, 2022

photo: Masyn Winn (Palm Beach Cardinals)

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 4-1 on Friday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day, Masyn Winn, was 5-for-6, plus a walk, a steal and two RBI. Starters Michael McGreevy and Gordon Graceffo also starred in Peoria’s doubleheader sweep. Palm Beach logged its third straight walkoff win.



Results from games played Friday, April 15.

Memphis 6 at Charlotte 3

The Memphis Redbirds beat the Knights at Truist Field in Charlotte on Friday night. Connor Thomas made the start for Memphis. The left hander pitched four innings and gave up one unearned run, allowed three hits and struck out two.

Packy Naughton tossed three innings of relief and surrendered one run to earn the win. Blake Parker allowed one run in the eighth and Jake Walsh threw a scoreless ninth to earn his second save.

Packy Naughton

Charlotte got on the board first with one run in the first inning. In the fifth the Knights added one score to make it 2-0. The Redbirds responded with their first run in the sixth when Kramer Robertson singled and came home on a pair of Charlotte defensive errors.

Memphis took the lead in the seventh with three runs. Alec Burleson led off with a single and Ivan Herrera walked. Conner Capel singled to load the bases and Burleson scored on a force out by Ben DeLuzio. Pinch hitter Juan Yepez hit into a fielder’s choice to plate Herrera. Evan Mendoza followed with a sac fly to score DeLuzio.

The Knights scored their third run in the eighth on a solo home run. Memphis answered with a solo home run by Capel and an RBI single by Cory Spangenberg. Burleson and Capel each had two hits.

Spangenberg made a throwing error.

Saturday’s game:  at Charlotte, T.J. Zeuch RHP (0-1, 6.75) vs. Kade McClure RHP, 6:04 CT

Springfield 5 at Arkansas 6

The Springfield Cardinals were edged by the Travelers in a one-run contest at windy Dickey Stephens Field on Friday night. Despite the loss, prospect Jordan Walker had good night at the plate.

Springfield came to bat in the second behind 1-0. Moises Gomez walked, and Chandler Redmond plated him on a double. Todd Lott and Nick Dunn each drew a walk. With the bases juiced, Redmond scored on a wild pitch. Matt Koperniak grounded out and Lott scored to increase Springfield’s lead to 3-1.

Arkansas quickly tied it with two runs in the bottom of the second. The game remained knotted at 3-3 until the sixth inning when the Travelers took a 5-3 lead. Arkansas added their sixth run in the seventh.

Moisés Gómez

Springfield rallied in the eighth when Walker singled and Gomez hit a two-run home run to decrease the lead to 6-5. The Cardinals could not add on in the ninth. Walker was 3-for-5 in the game with three singles.

Jordan Walker

Kyle Leahy took the mound for the Cardinals. The right hander pitched 5 1/3 innings and gave up five runs, four earned, on four hits, fanned eight and walked two. Leahy suffered his first loss of the season. Michael Brettell relieved Leahy and surrendered one run in 1 2/3 innings. Sean Kealey tossed a scoreless eighth.

In the field, Nick Dunn and Gomez each made a fielding error. Catcher Julio Rodriguez had a passed ball.

Saturday’s game:  at Arkansas, Domingo Robles LHP (0-0, 2.25) vs. Taylor Dollard RHP (0-0, 0.00) 7:05 CT.

Peoria 2, Great Lakes 1 (10 innings, Game 1)

The Peoria Chiefs edged the Loons in a 2-1 win the first game of a twin bill at Dozer Park on Friday night. Starter Michael McGreevy pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings with two hits allowed and four strikeouts.

Michael McGreevy

John Beller relieved and surrendered one unearned run in 3 1/3 innings to close out the game. Beller was awarded the win, his first of the season.

The game was scoreless until the ninth, when Great Lakes pushed across a run, but the Chiefs answered with one run in the bottom frame to re-tie the score. Noah Mendlinger began the inning on second base. Mendlinger advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a sac fly by Masyn Winn.

Peoria scored the winning run in the 10th. Aaron Antonini began the inning on second base. Tommy Jew and Carlos Soto each drew a walk. With the bases loaded, Antonini came home on a wild pitch for the walk off victory. Winn was 3-for-3 with a walk and an RBI.

Masyn Winn

On the base paths, Winn stole his fourth base of the season. Jew stole his second base and pinch runner Francisco Hernandez swiped his first.

Winn and Jacob Buchberger each committed a throwing error.

Peoria 5, Great Lakes 2 (seven innings, Game 2)

The Chiefs defeated the Loons in the second game of the twin bill on Friday night at Dozer Park. Gordon Graceffo started for Peoria and pitched six innings. The right hander gave up one run on two hits and fanned seven to earn his second win. Enmanuel Solano surrendered one unearned run in the seventh.

Gordon Graceffo

Great Lakes scored first with one run in the second. Peoria answered in the third with three runs to take the lead on RBI singles by Mack Chambers, Masyn Winn, and Jacob Buchberger.

Buchberger drove in the fourth run on a ground out in the fourth. In the sixth, a sac fly by Winn plated a fifth run for the Chiefs. The Loons added a second run in the seventh, but the rally fell short.

Winn and Buchberger each had two hits.

On the base paths, Tommy Jew and Mike Antico each stole their third base of the season. In the field, Chambers made a throwing error.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Great Lakes, Dionys Rodriguez RHP (0-0, 0.00) vs. Nick Nastin RHP, 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 4, Daytona 3

The Cardinals topped the Tortugas in a 4-3 win at Roger Dean Stadium on Friday night. It was the Beach Birds’ third consecutive walkoff victory. Alex Cornwell took the mound to start for Palm Beach. The left hander pitched 2 1/3 innings and gave up two runs, one earned, on five hits, struck out two and walked one.

Ludwin Jimenez

Ludwin Jimenez threw 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief. Hayes Heinecke surrendered one run in two innings pitched. Nelfri Contreras tossed a scoreless ninth to earn the win.

Daytona got on the board first with two runs in the top of the first. The Cardinals answered with one run in the bottom half of the first on a sac fly by Osvaldo Tovalin.

The score stayed at 2-1 until the sixth. Jeremy Rivas led off with a single. Wade Stauss singled and Hansel Otamendi followed with a ground out. Rivas scored on a fielding error on the ground out to tie the game at 2-2.

The Tortugas regained the lead with one run in the top of the eighth. The Beach Birds quickly tied it again in the bottom frame of the eighth on two singles by Tovalin and Stauss and a wild pitch.

The Cardinals won the game in a walk off in the ninth. Franklin Soto singled, Rivas singled, and Tovalin walked. A wild pitch sent Soto home for the win. Rivas and Stauss each had two hits.

In the field, Soto made a throwing error. Outfielder Adanson Cruz had an assist at first base.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Daytona, Trent Baker RHP (0-1, 6.75) vs. Arij Fransen RHP (0-0, 7.71) 5:00 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 14, 2022

photo: Alec Burleson, Juan Yepez, Nolan Gorman

The St. Louis Cardinals system was 2-1 on Wednesday with Peoria postponed. The Cardinal Nation’s Players of the Day are the Memphis trio of Alec Burleson, Juan Yepez and Nolan Gorman. The former pair each hit two three-run home runs for six RBI and the latter had five hits in the Redbirds’ slugfest victory in Charlotte.



Results from games played Wednesday, April 13.

Memphis 18 at Charlotte 14 (11 innings)

The Memphis Redbirds (5-3) outslugged the Knights (3-5) in a Wednesday night contest at Truist Field in Charlotte behind four three-run home runs.

Johan Oviedo got the start for Memphis and pitched four innings. The right hander gave up seven runs, six earned, five hits, struck out five and walked four.

Tommy Parsons relieved Oviedo and threw two innings with four runs allowed. Kyle Ryan tossed a scoreless seventh. Junior Fernandez surrendered one run in the eighth. Jake Walsh relinquished an unearned run in his two innings pitched to earn the win. James Naile hurled a scoreless 11th.

The first Memphis run scored in the first inning on a solo home run by Nolan Gorman. The Knights put up five runs in the second to take the lead.

Nolan Gorman

The Redbirds cut the lead to 5-4 in the fourth on a three-run home run by Alec Burleson. In the fifth, a Gorman single plated the tying run.

Charlotte responded with six runs in the bottom of the fifth. In the seventh Memphis added four runs on a Gorman single and a three-run home run by Juan Yepez. The Knights made it 12-9 in the eighth.

Yepez blasted his second three-run home run in the ninth to knot the score at 12 apiece. The contest advanced to the 10th when Ivan Herrera gave Memphis a 13-12 lead on an RBI single.

Juan Yepez

Charlotte tied the game again in the bottom half of the 10th. In the top of the 11th, Brendan Donovan scored on a wild pitch, Burleson smacked another three-run home run, and Herrera plated a run on a double to make it 18-13. Charlotte pushed a final run over the plate in the bottom of the 11th, but the Redbirds prevailed 18-14.

Alec Burleson

Gorman went 5-for-6 with a home run and four runs scored. It was his first career five-hit contest. Yepez was 3-for-5 with six RBI and three runs scored. His RBI total of 12 in just eight games leads all of Triple-A. Burleson was 2-for-5 with six RBI and two runs scored. It was the outfielder’s second career multi-home run game. Herrera was 2-for-6 with two RBI. Ben DeLuzio was 2-for-5.

Conner Capel stole two bases, and Cory Spangenberg stole his third base of the season. In the field, Capel made a throwing error, Herrera had a fielding miscue, and Gorman was tagged for interference.

Thursday’s game:  at Charlotte, Zack Thompson LHP (0-0, 6.23) vs. Johan Dominguez RHP, 6:04 CT.

Springfield 0 at Arkansas 8

The Springfield Cardinals (3-3) were blanked by the Travelers 8-0 at Little Rock’s Dickey-Stephens Park on Wednesday. The Springfield offense managed only two hits off Arkansas pitching.

The two hits were a single by Delvin Perez in the first inning, and a double from Malcom Nunez in the second. The Cardinals struck out 11 times and drew just three walks.

Connor Lunn

Connor Lunn made the start for Springfield, pitched seven innings, gave up two runs on five hits and fanned eight. Lunn’s offense gave the hurler no run support during those seven innings. Johan Quezada relieved and surrendered six runs, four earned, on five hits in the ninth inning. Lunn took the hard-luck loss.

On the base paths, Perez stole his third base of the season. Perez committed a fielding miscue, his sixth error of the season.

Thursday’s game:  at Arkansas, Dalton Roach RHP (0-0, 2.45) vs. Levi Stoudt RHP (0-1, 3.60) 6:35 CT.

Peoria vs. Great Lakes (postponed)

Wednesday’s game between the Peoria Chiefs (1-3) and Great Lakes Loons (2-2) at Dozer Park was postponed due to inclement weather. It will be played on Friday, April 15 as part of a doubleheader.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Great Lakes, Nathanael Heredia LHP (0-0, 9.00) vs. TBA, 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 4, Daytona 3 (10 innings)

The Palm Beach Cardinals (2-3) topped the Tortugas (2-3) in a 10-inning game at Roger Dean Stadium on Wednesday night. Jose Moreno started for Palm Beach. The right hander pitched four innings, and gave up two runs, one earned, on four hits, fanned five and walked one.

Carlos Guarate

In five innings of relief, Carlos Guarate yielded three hits, two walks and four strikeouts, and surrendered one unearned run. Andre Granillo tossed a scoreless 10th to earn the win.

Daytona took first lead, scoring one run in the second. The Beach Birds tied it up in the third on an RBI single by Wade Stauss. The Tortugas regained the lead with one run in the fourth

The Cardinals scored two runs in the fifth on an RBI single by Osvaldo Tovalin and a sac fly by Hansel Otamendi. In the top of the ninth Daytona knotted it at 3-3. Palm Beach failed to score in the bottom half of the ninth, taking the game to extra innings.

In the bottom of the 10th, Adanson Cruz’ sac fly was the walkoff winner for the Cardinals. Tovalin went 3-for-3 with an RBI. Luis Rodriguez was 2-for-3.

On the base paths, Sander Mora stole hit first base of the season. In the field, Franklin Soto made two errors, one fielding miscue and a missed catch error.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Daytona, Inohan Paniagua RHP (0-0, 4.50) vs. Sam Becschoter RHP (0-1, 10.13) 5:30 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 13, 2022

photo: Moises Gomez hitting against Miles Mikolas (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system went 2-2 on Tuesday. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is center fielder Moises Gomez, who was 2-for-4 with two home runs and four RBI in Springfield’s road win. Cory Spangenberg and Zane Mills were other standouts.



Results from the games played Tuesday, April 12.

Memphis 9 at Charlotte 2

The Redbirds smoked the Knights 9-2 in a Tuesday night contest at Truist Field. Matthew Liberatore earned his first win of the Memphis season, pitching five innings and giving up two runs on six hits. The left hander fanned six.

The pen was strong as Blake Parker tossed a scoreless sixth. Packy Naughton threw two scoreless innings and Zach McCallister closed with a scoreless ninth.

Charlotte got on the board first with their two runs in the second inning. Memphis came back in the fourth with a six-run burst to take the lead. Luken Baker drew a bases loaded walk to score the first run. Conner Capel grounded into a force out and two runs came home with the aid of a throwing error. Cory Spangenberg topped off the inning with a three-run home run.

Cory Spangenberg

The Redbirds added three insurance runs in the ninth. RBI singles by Ben DeLuzio and Juan Yepez brought in two runs and the other scored on a force out by Alec Burleson. Donovan, Yepez, DeLuzio and Ali Sanchez each had two hits. Spangenberg drove in three.

On the base paths, DeLuzio was picked off and caught stealing.

Wednesday’s game:  at Charlotte, Johan Oviedo RHP (0-1, 7.20) vs. Emilio Vargas RHP (0-1, 11.25) 5:35 CT.

Springfield 6 at Arkansas 3

The Springfield Cardinals defeated the Arkansas Travelers on Tuesday afternoon at Dickey-Stephens Park in the opener of a six-game series in Little Rock.

The Springfield offense amassed 11 hits, including two long balls on the way to the victory. Moises Gomez drove in four of the Cardinals six runs on a three-run home run and a solo shot. The latter occurred in the third inning to get the Cardinals on the board and tie the score at one apiece.

Moisés Gómez

The Travelers regained their lead in the bottom of the third. In the fourth, a ground out by Todd Lott knotted the game again and Gomez followed with his three-run blast to give Springfield a 5-2 lead. That lead held until the ninth, when Irving Lopez added an insurance run on a single.

Off-season free agent signee Gomez was 2-for-4 with four RBI and two runs scored. Julio Rodriguez was 3-for-4. Matt Koperniak was 2-for-5.

Garrett Williams started for Springfield. The left hander gave up three runs in 3 2/3 innings with four strikeouts and three walks. Edgar Escobar tossed 4 1/3 scoreless innings of relief to earn the win. Freddy Pacheco added a scoreless ninth for his second save.

Edgar Escobar

On the base paths, Koperniak stole his second base of the season. In the field, Jordan Walker committed a fielding error and Delvin Perez missed a catch. Williams picked a runner off first base.

Wednesday’s game:  at Arkansas, Connor Lunn RHP (0-0, 6.23) vs. George Kirby (0-0, 3.86) 6:35 CT.

Peoria 2, Great Lakes 15

The Chiefs were walloped by the Loons by a 15-2 score in Peoria’s home opener at Dozer Park on Wednesday. Austin Love took the loss for Peoria, pitching 3 1/3 innings and giving up nine runs on seven hits. The right hander struck out three and walked three.

Michael YaSenka surrendered five runs in 1 2/3 innings of relief. Colin Schmid threw two scoreless innings to follow. Leonardo Taveras tossed the final two innings and allowed one run.

Colin Schmid

The Chiefs offense scored two runs on five hits. Thomas Francisco got Peoria on the board with an RBI single in the bottom of the second. The Chiefs did not score again until the ninth, on an RBI single by Mike Antico. No Chiefs hitter had multiple hits. Masyn Winn had the only extra base hit, a triple.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Great Lakes, Nathanael Heredia LHP (0-0, 9.00) vs. TBA 6:35 CT.

Palm Beach 2, Daytona 3 (10 innings)

The Palm Beach Cardinals were edged in extra innings by the Tortugas on Wednesday at Roger Dean Stadium in the first game of the series against Daytona.

The Beach Birds’ offense had 10 hits but could only push two runs home. They scored first in the fifth inning when Ramon Mendoza led off with a single and scored on a throwing error and a passed ball.

Daytona tied it in the sixth, but Palm Beach broke the tie in the seventh on a sac fly by Jeremy Rivas following a Mendoza double and a sac bunt by Tyler Reichenborn. The Tortugas knotted it up again in the eighth on a wild pitch. The game advanced into the 10th inning when Daytona scored the winning run, again on a wild pitch.

Rivas, Mendoza, and Luis Rodriguez each had two hits. Rivas had the only RBI.

Zane Mills

Zane Mills started for the Cardinals. The right hander pitched five scoreless innings, allowed three hits, fanned six, and walked one. Chris Gerard relieved and was charged with a blown save. The left hander gave up the first run scoring wild pitch and two runs in 2 2/3 innings total. Roy Garcia was the final pitcher. The right hander surrendered one run in 2 1/3 innings, took the loss and was charged with a blown save thanks to the second wild pitch.

On the base paths, Franklin Soto was picked off second base.

Wednesday’s game:  vs Daytona, Andrew Marrero RHP (0-0, 0.00) vs. Tanner Cooper RHP (0-0, 0.00) 5:30 CT.


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – April 4-10

photo: Paul Goldschmidt, Nolan Arenado and Dylan Carlson (Jeff Curry/USA TODAY Sports)

The St. Louis Cardinals opened the 2022 season with two wins and a loss at home versus Pittsburgh. Nolan Arenado, Dylan Carlson and Paul Goldschmidt are pacing the NL’s top offense in OPS. We highlight key events in this week in team history.



Spring game recaps

Monday, April 4 – Cardinals 4, Nationals 3

The St. Louis Cardinals topped the Washington Nationals in a spring game at Roger Dean Stadium on Tuesday. This was the final tune up for starter Miles Mikolas.

Miles Mikolas

Mikolas pitched six innings and gave up one run on four hits, struck out one and walked one. Jordan Hicks, Aaron Brooks, and Genesis Cabrera followed Mikolas out of the bullpen. Hicks surrendered two runs in the seventh and was relieved by Brooks with two outs in the inning. Brooks retired the final batter. Cabrera tossed the final two scoreless innings. Mikolas picked up the win.

Albert Pujols drove in the first run for St. Louis in the second inning on a single. A two run home run by Paul Goldschmidt in the third inning gave the Redbirds a 3-0 lead. St. Louis’ final run came home in the sixth on a ground out by Harrison Bader. Pujols was 2-for-2 with an RBI in the contest.

Tuesday, April 5 – Cardinals 7 at Marlins 0

In the final game of spring training the Cardinals blanked the Marlins 7-0 at Roger Dean with the Marlins as the home team.

The offense put up two runs in the third inning on a sac fly by Paul Goldschmidt and a double by Nolan Arenado.

The score remained 2-0 until the eighth inning. The offense was all minor leaguers at that point as the regulars had left the game. Darlin Moquete tripled and drove in one run. A single by Tyler Reichenborn scored the second run of the inning. Jeremy Rivas plated the third and final run of the inning to make it 5-0.

In the ninth, Moquete drove in his second run on a single and Wade Stauss tripled to plate the second run for the final score of 7-0. Arenado and Moquete each had two hits in the game.

Steven Matz

Steven Matz made his final tune up with a 6 2/3 inning scoreless start in which he fanned five and walked one. Giovanny Gallegos got the final out of the seventh. Jake Woodford and Alfredo Ruiz each tossed a scoreless inning. Matz got the win.

The Cardinals finished with the top record in the 2022 Grapefruit League at 9-5.

Wednesday, April 6 – Off day

Regular season recaps

Thursday, April 7 – Cardinals 9, Pirates 0

On Opening Day 2022, the Cardinals blanked the Pirates 9-0 in front of a sold out crowd at Busch Stadium.

Adam Wainwright

Starter Adam Wainwright pitched six scoreless innings with five hits allowed and six strikeouts. Nick Wittgren tossed a scoreless seventh. Genesis Cabrera and Ryan Helsley each hurled a scoreless frame. Wainwright earned his first win of the season.

The Redbirds offense put up one run in the first inning on an RBI single by Tyler O’Neill. In the second, following a leadoff single by Harrison Bader, and a walk by Paul Goldschmidt, O’Neill blasted a three run home run to left field to give the Cardinals a 4-0 lead.

In the sixth, St. Louis increased its lead to 5-0 on a sac fly by Dylan Carlson following a Bader double. The Cardinals had their big inning in the ninth, padding their lead to 9-0 with a solo home run from Tommy Edman, an O’Neill sac fly, and two-run blast by Nolan Arenado. Bader and O’Neill each had two hits in the game.

Goldschmidt stole his first base of the season.

Friday, April 8 – Off day

Saturday, April 9 – Cardinals 6, Pirates 2

The Cardinals defeated the Pirates in the second game of the four-game series by the score of 6-2. A shortened outing for starters Miles Mikolas and Mitch Keller turned the contest into a battle of bullpens.

Mikolas lasted 3 2/3 innings and gave up two runs on six hits, struck out one and walked two. Kodi Whitley relieved and tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings to get the win. Nick Wittgren, T.J. McFarland, Ryan Helsley, and Giovanny Gallegos combined to hurl the final four scoreless innings.

Pittsburgh scored first in the first inning, but St. Louis quickly tied it in the bottom of the first on an RBI double by Nolan Arenado. The Pirates briefly retook the lead 2-1 in the top of the third, but the Cardinals answered in the bottom half of the inning with three runs on an Arenado RBI single and a two run home run by Paul DeJong.

Nolan Arenado

The Cardinals added to their lead with an RBI single by Corey Dickerson in the fifth and an RBI double by Arenado in the sixth. The Cardinals third baseman had a 4-for-4 day with three RBI and two runs scored.

Dylan Carlson swiped his first bag of the season.

Sunday, April 10 – Cardinals 4, Pirates 9

The Cardinals took their first loss of the season with a 9-4 thrashing by the Pirates on Sunday afternoon. The early innings favored the Redbirds, but the Pirates came back to assault St. Louis pitching for 15 hits and nine runs.

The Cardinals posted three runs in the first inning to take the early lead. Dylan Carlson led off with a double to right field. Paul Goldschmidt singled, and Tyler O’Neill plated Carlson on a sac fly. Nolan Arenado then destroyed a baseball into the left field stands for a two-run home run.

The Pirates took St. Louis starter Steven Matz to the cleaners for five runs in the third, including a grand slam, then added two more in the fourth. The 7-3 lead lasted until the seventh when the Pirates planted one more run.

The Cardinals finally answered with their fourth run in the bottom half of the seventh. Harrison Bader doubled, and Tommy Edman singled. Carlson plated Bader on a sac fly. Carlson had two hits and an RBI in the game.

The Pirates padded their lead with a final run in the eighth.

Matz had a shaky outing on the heels of his strong start in the final game of spring. The left hander went three innings with seven runs allowed on nine hits. He fanned five and walked one. Jake Woodford tossed three scoreless innings of relief. Andre Pallante made his major league debut and tossed a one run seventh inning. Aaron Brooks surrendered a run in the final two innings. Matz took the loss.

In the field, Carlson made a throwing error on an attempted putout at third base. The strong throw hit the runner and bounced into the foul area, allowing the runner to score. Nolan Arenado had a rare fielding miscue on a ground ball.

Cardinals home opener draws sellout crowd

St. Louis’ Opening day game against the Pittsburgh Pirates was a sellout, perhaps fueled by the return of superstar Albert Pujols in his final year before retirement along with the pending retirement of Cardinals favorite Yadier Molina. This home opener was the first with a capacity crowd since 2019, due to pandemic concerns.

The Opening Day ceremonies featured the usual parade and introduction of the Hall of Famers, circling the track in their convertibles to the applause of the Cardinals faithful. The bevy of returning red coated former Cardinals included slugger Mark McGwire, no longer kept from attending due to coaching duties with other teams. Newly installed Cardinals Hall of Famers, and Baseball Hall of Famers such as Ted Simmons, Ozzie Smith, and Whitey Herzog were also in attendance.

The manager, coaches, and other field staff plus the active roster of Cardinals and injured players circled the stadium in their Ford trucks as usual, though there was one change this year. Instead of introducing the starting pitcher and catcher from the bullpen, both Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina were introduced coming out of the dugout just prior to the parade of their teammates. Albert Pujols was also introduced from the dugout, shaking the hands of the assembled Hall of Famers just before Wainwright and Molina were presented.

The festivities were a success, and the team presented the assembled fans with a 9-0 shutout of the visiting Pirates.

The series continued on Saturday and Sunday, but with the unfortunate absence of manager Oli Marmol, who had a touch of the flu. His bench coach, former Cardinal Skip Schumaker, took over the managing duties in his absence.

Stats leaders

Nolan Arenado has started the season red-hot. Five of his six hits in 12 at-bats have gone for extra bases. The third baseman’s OPS is 1.789 and he has a team-leading seven RBI.

New leadoff may Dylan Carlson has two doubles, two singles and a walk in 11 plate appearances for a 1.029 OPS.

Dylan Carlson

First baseman Paul Goldschmidt has drawn five walks to go with three singles in 14 plate appearances for a team-leading .571 OBP.

As a team, the Cardinals offense is second in MLB and first in the National League with their .445 slugging percentage and .846 OPS. The team ERA of 3.67 is right in the middle of the pack, 16th in MLB and ninth in the NL.

National League Central Standings

The 2-1 Cardinals are tied with the Cubs on top of the division, a half-game ahead of the Reds and one game ahead of Pittsburgh and Milwaukee.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 4/4 The Cardinals optioned RHP Jake Walsh to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/4 Cardinals placed RHP Jack Flaherty on the 10-day injured list. Right shoulder discomfort.
  • 4/7 The Cardinals sent LHP Brandon Waddell outright to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/7 The Cardinals selected the contract of RHP Andre Pallante from the Memphis Redbirds.

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes was placed on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until June.
  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder. The right hander was placed on the 10-day injured list to begin the season.

Looking Ahead

The Cardinals will finish the four game series against the Pirates on Monday. Monday’s starter is scheduled to be Dakota Hudson.

The homestand continues when the Royals come to town for a two-game set on Tuesday and Wednesday. Jordan Hicks is expected to get the Tuesday start with Adam Wainwright pitching on Wednesday.

The Cardinals travel to Milwaukee to take on the Brewers in a four-game series beginning Thursday, April 14. No starters have been announced but will likely be Mikolas on Thursday, followed by Matz, Hudson, and Hicks.

Following the Brewers series, the Cardinals travel to Miami on Monday for three games with the Marlins to begin on Tuesday.

The regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

This week’s Blast will take a “remember when” look at the days of the past week in the history of the Cardinals’ franchise. Though this week included the opening day of the regular season, the beginning of a baseball season has varied since the beginning of the franchise, with some earlier, and some much later.

This year’s regular season start was delayed by the lockout, but typical opening weeks in the not-too-distant past have begun during the period of the last week of March to the first week in April. This segment looks at the period April 4 through April 10 in Cardinals history.

Stephen Piscotty (USA TODAY Sports Images)

April 4

  • Mark McGwire began his historic 1998 season on this date.
  • In 2017, former Cardinal Stephen Piscotty suffered several incidents of physical abuse in one trip around the bases. In a game against the Cubs, Piscotty was hit by a pitch from Jake Arrieta on his left elbow. When the outfielder advanced to second base on a wild pitch, he was hit in the right elbow by a throw from catcher Willson Contreras. As Piscotty attempted to score on a fielding error, he was hit in the head by a throw from second baseman Javier Baez. Piscotty left the game to be evaluated for a possible concussion.
  • This day is a shared birthday by two Cardinals Hall of Famers, Tom Herr (1956) and Scott Rolen (1975).

April 5

  • The Cardinals purchased the contract of right-handed relief pitcher Fernando Salas from the Mexican League on this day in 2007. Salas is most remembered by Cardinals fans as the replacement for Ryan Franklin in the closer spot mid-season 2011. He finished the 2011 Championship Season with 24 saves.
David Freese

April 6

  • April 6, 1971 was the first time in the history of the franchise that the Cardinals played a regular season game on this date.
  • The longest losing streak to begin a season in franchise history occurred in the first six games of the 1997 season. The Cardinals lost 3-2 to the Astros on this day in 1997, which was the sixth consecutive loss, a franchise record. The next game, on April 8, the Cardinals defeated the Expos 2-1 to end the streak.
  • David Freese made his Cardinals debut on this day in 2009. He went 0-for-1 in a 6-4 loss to the Pirates.
  • Mike Matheny made his managerial debut on this day in 2012. The Cardinals defeated the Brewers 11-5 at Miller Park.

April 7

  • Current broadcaster Rick Horton made his Cardinals playing debut on this day in 1984. He pitched 2 1/3 innings and gave up one earned run on one hit.
  • Colby Rasmus made his St. Louis debut on this day in 2009. Rasmus started in right field and went 2-for-4 with two singles and two runs scored.
Allen Craig

April 8

  • The Cardinals first wore the “Birds on the Bat” uniform in an exhibition game on this day in 1922.
  • Allen Craig made his Cardinals debut on this day in 2010. He went 0-for-4 in a 2-1 loss to the Reds in Cincinnati.
  • On this day in 2016, the Cardinals set a record with three pinch hit home runs in a game. In a 7-4 win over the Braves, Aledmys Diaz, Greg Garcia, and Jeremy Hazelbaker all went deep as pinch hitters.

April 9

  • On this day in 1953, St. Louis Browns owner Bill Veeck sold Sportsman’s Park to Anheuser-Busch for $800,000. The ballpark was renamed Busch Stadium.

April 10

  • On this date in 2006, the “Stan the Man” statute was unveiled outside Busch Stadium III.

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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 9, 2022

photo: Adanson Cruz (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals system went 2-1 on Friday night with Peoria’s opener postponed. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is center fielder Adanson Cruz, with two home runs and four RBI in Palm Beach’s win over Jupiter.

Results from the games played Friday, April 8.

Memphis 4, Gwinnett 3

In the fourth game of the series with Gwinnett on Friday night, the Memphis Redbirds (2-2) edged the Stripers (ATL) 4-3 at AutoZone Park.

Gwinnett took a 2-0 lead in the first inning against Memphis starter Zack Thompson. The Redbirds tied the game in the third on a ground rule double by Juan Yepez that scored two.

The Stripers regained the lead in the fifth with a run to make it 3-2. In the seventh, Memphis took its first lead, scoring two runs on a long ball off the bat of newcomer Ben DeLuzio. The Redbirds held onto the lead to take the win, their second of the series.

Ben DeLuzio

Number two hitter Nolan Gorman was the only Redbird with multiple hits. The second baseman went 2-for-4 with two singles and a run scored. Yepez and DeLuzio each drove in two.

Thompson pitched 4 1/3 innings and gave up four runs, three earned, on four hits. The left hander fanned six. Tommy Parsons tossed 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief to earn the win. Jacob Bosiokovic hurled a scoreless ninth and earned his second save.

Conner Capel stole his second base of the season.

Saturday’s game:  vs. Gwinnett, Connor Thomas LHP (0-0, 0.00) vs. Jasseel De La Cruz RHP (0-0, 0.00) 3:05 CT.

Springfield 8, NW Arkansas 11

In their first game of their new season, the Springfield Cardinals fell to the Northwest Arkansas Naturals (KC) 11-8 in a slugfest at Hammons Field on Friday night.

Connor Lunn got the start for Springfield, and he pitched 4 1/3 innings. The right hander gave up four runs, three earned, on five hits, struck out five and walked one. Garrett Williams relieved and threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings.

From there, the bullpen and the defense struggled. Edgar Escobar started the seventh and surrendered three runs in 2/3 of an inning. Michael Brettell relieved Escobar and could not record an out. Brettell was charged with a blown save. Grant Black entered as the third pitcher in the seventh and got the final out. Black returned to toss the final two innings and allowed three unearned runs. He took the loss.

The Naturals took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning. The Cardinals tied the score in the bottom of the second on a two-run home run by Matt Koperniak. Chandler Redmond’s RBI double gave Springfield a 3-2 lead in the third. Chase Pinder added a solo home run in the fourth to increase the lead to 4-2.

NW Arkansas scored two in the top of the fifth to knot the score at 4-4. The Cardinals answered in the home half of the fifth with a run to regain the lead at 5-4. Malcom Nunez’ double drove in the leading run.

Malcom Nuñez

Springfield added to its lead with three runs in the sixth on two bases loaded walks and a wild pitch. The Naturals came back in the seventh to tie the game again with four runs.

With the game tied at 8-8, NW Arkansas added two unearned runs in the eighth and another in the ninth to lead 11-8. The Cardinals were unable to respond.

Nunez was 2-for-3 with two RBI. Redmond and Koperniak also drove in two each.

Defense on the left side of the infield was an issue for the Cardinals. Shortstop Delvin Perez and third baseman Jordan Walker each committed two errors. For Perez, it was a throwing error and a fielding miscue. Walker made two throwing errors. Catcher Pedro Pages had a passed ball.

Saturday’s game:  vs. NW Arkansas, Dalton Roach RHP (0-0, 0.00) vs. Anthony Veneziano LHP (0-0, 0.00) 5:35 CT.

Peoria at Wisconsin (postponed)

The season opener for Peoria at Wisconsin was postponed due to wet grounds. It will be made up as part of a seven-inning double header on Sunday, April 10.

Saturday’s game:  at Wisconsin, Michael McGreevy (0-0, 0,00) vs. Justin Jarvis RHP (0-0, 0.00) 4:10 CT.

Palm Beach 7 at Jupiter 5

In the opening game of Palm Beach’s season, the Cardinals defeated the Jupiter Hammerheads (MIA) on Friday night as the visiting team at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter.

Starter Inohan Paniagua pitched four innings and gave up four runs, two earned, on four hits. The right hander fanned eight and issued no free passes. Winning pitcher Chris Gerard followed with two scoreless innings of relief with all six outs recorded via the strikeout. Jose Moreno surrendered an unearned run in the seventh. Carlos Guarate and Roy Garcia each tossed a scoreless inning with Garcia collecting his first save.

Adanson Cruz

After Jupiter took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, the Beach Birds scored three runs in the second on a long ball to right center field by Adanson Cruz. A two-run home run by Elijah Cabell increased the Cardinals lead to 5-1.

Cruz hit his second long ball of the night, a solo shot, to make it 6-1. The Hammerheads answered with three in the fourth to cut Palm Beach’s lead to two runs.

In the seventh, an RBI single by Osvalin Tovalin gave Palm Beach a 7-4 lead, but Jupiter wasn’t done, plating their fifth run in the bottom of the seventh. That concluded the night’s scoring.

Cruz went 2-for-4 with two home runs and four RBI. Tyler Reichenborn and Tovalin were each 2-for-5.

Reichenborn was caught stealing. In the field, Tovalin and Reichenborn each made a fielding error and Reichenborn had an outfield assist at home.

Saturday’s game:  at Jupiter, Gustavo J. Rodriguez RHP (0-0. 0.00) vs TBA 5:00 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 7, 2022

photo: Luken Baker (Springfield Cardinals)

The St. Louis Cardinals system had one game on Wednesday with Memphis losing at AutoZone Park. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is first baseman Luken Baker, with a solo home run and two RBI.



Results from the game played Wednesday, April 6.

Memphis 3, Gwinnett 5

The Redbirds played Gwinnett in the second game of the season at AutoZone Park. Memphis (1-1) was defeated by the Stripers Wednesday afternoon by the score of 5-3.

The Redbirds got on the board first with a run in the first inning. Brendan Donovan led off with a double and advanced to third on a fielding error. Nolan Gorman drew a walk. Luken Baker then flied out into a double play and Donovan scored.

Luken Baker

Memphis didn’t score again until the sixth inning. The offense scored twice on a solo home run by Baker and an RBI single by Evan Mendoza. For the day, the Redbirds had five hits with no player getting multiples.

Matthew Liberatore made the start and pitched 3 2/3 innings, giving up four runs on seven hits and fanning five. The left hander took the loss. Angel Rondon tossed 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. Three pitchers with MLB experience handled the final three innings. Zach McCallister surrendered one run in the seventh. Packy Naughton and Blake Parker hurled a scoreless inning each.

Cory Spangenberg stole his second base of the season. Scott Hurst and Justin Toerner each had an outfield assist at second base.

Thursday’s game:  vs. Gwinnett, TBA (Mem) vs. Jackson Stephens RHP (0-0, 0.00) 6:45 CT.


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Cardinals Minor League Notebook – April 6, 2022

photo: Alec Burleson (Springfield Cardinals)

The St. Louis Cardinals system went 1-0 on Tuesday, Opening Day for Memphis. The Cardinal Nation’s Player of the Day is left fielder Alec Burleson, who had a home run and an outfield assist.

Results from the game played Tuesday, April 5.

Memphis 2, Gwinnett 1

In the first game of the Triple-A Redbirds’ 2022 season, Memphis edged the Gwinnett Stripers by the score of 2-1 at AutoZone Park on Tuesday night. T.J. Zeuch got the Opening Day start for Memphis and the right hander pitched 4 1/3 innings. He gave up one run on five hits, fanned eight and walked two.

James Naile relieved Zeuch and tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Junior Fernandez followed with 1 1/3 scoreless innings to collect the win. Kyle Ryan and Jacob Bosiokovic combined for the final 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Bosiokovic earned the first save of 2022.

Gwinnett scored first on a solo home run off Zeuch in the third inning. The Redbirds tied the game in the fifth when Corey Spangenberg singled, stole second base, and came home on a single by Kramer Robertson.

Alec Burleson

Memphis took the lead in the seventh on a solo home run to left center field by Alec Burleson, The Cardinal Nation’s no. 14 prospect. The Redbirds offense had six hits, with Spangenberg’s 2-for 3 the only Memphis player with multiple hits.

Robertson and Spangenberg each had a stolen base. Robertson was picked off first base. In the field, Burleson had an outfield assist at second base, and Connor Capel had an outfield assist at home.

Wednesday’s game:  vs. Gwinnett, Matthew Liberatore (Mem, 0-0, 0.00) vs. Touki Touissant (0-0, 0.00) 12:05 CT.


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – Week of March 28-April 3

photo: Harrison Bader (Jeff Curry/Imagn)

The 7-5 St. Louis Cardinals near the end of camp with the 28-man roster almost complete. Harrison Bader is under contract for two more years and Yadier Molina takes a winter managing job. Our history feature highlights Mark McGwire’s 70-home-run season of 1998.

Spring game recaps

Monday, March 28 – Cardinals 1, Astros 2

The Cardinals began the second full week of spring games with a contest against the Astros in Jupiter. Adam Wainwright got the start and pitched five innings, giving up two runs on four hits and fanning three. The right hander took the loss, his second of the spring. Jordan Hicks, Ryan Helsley, Nick Wittgren and Giovanny Gallegos followed Wainwright with one scoreless inning each.

The Cardinals’ lone run came in the fifth inning on an RBI double by Juan Yepez. The offense managed only three hits off Houston’s pitching staff, a double by Paul DeJong and a single by Noah Mendlinger, who entered to relieve Tommy Edman at second base.

Dylan Carlson had an outfield assist, throwing out Korey Lee at third base.

Tuesday, March 29 – Off day

Wednesday, March 30 – Cardinals 29, at Nationals 8

There was no mercy rule to prevent the massacre that occurred in Palm Beach on Wednesday. Whether the Cardinals have an adequate offense is up in the air, but there was no lack of offense in this game.

The Cardinals scored four runs in the first inning on an Albert Pujols double play, a Paul DeJong single, a Yadier Molina single, and a Harrison Bader double. Four additional runs came home in the second on a force out by Tyler O’Neill and a three-run home run by DeJong.

In the fourth, Paul Goldschmidt hit a solo home run and DeJong doubled to score another run. Bader singled in the third run in the inning. Molina hit a solo home run in the sixth.

Corey Dickerson

In the eighth inning, the Redbirds offense put 15 runs on the board. Corey Dickerson drove in two runs on a double and a single. Edmundo Sosa plated two runs on a single and a hit by pitch. Conner Capel’s two singles scored three runs. Two runs scored on a single and a force out by Brendan Donovan. Three runs came home on a double and sac fly by Alec Burleson. Ali Sanchez drove in a run on a single and Corey Spangenburg plated a run on a walk. A final run scored on a passed ball.

The offense put one more run on the board in the ninth on a single by Capel.

Miles Mikolas got the start for the Cardinals. The right hander pitched five innings and gave up one run on four hits while striking out two. T.J McFarland followed Mikolas and surrendered three runs. Connor Thomas threw a scoreless seventh. Jacob Bosiokovic and Cory Thompson pitched the eighth. Bosiokovic allowed four runs. Jake Walsh hurled a scoreless ninth. Mikolas earned the win, his second of the spring.

Thursday, March 31 – Cardinals 4 at Marlins 7

The Cardinals were defeated by the Marlins in a Thursday contest at Roger Dean Stadium. Drew VerHagen took the mound for the Cardinals and struggled, giving up seven runs in three innings pitched. The right hander struck out four and walked three. Kodi Whitley, Jordan Hicks, Andre Pallante, and Ryan Helsley combined to pitch the remaining five scoreless innings. VerHagen took the loss.

Paul DeJong hit a three-run home run in the third inning to tie the game at 3-3. The Marlins put up four runs in the bottom of that inning to regain the lead. The Cardinals’ fourth and final run was scored on a sac fly by Andrew Knizner in the fifth inning. DeJong and Tyler O’Neill were both 2-for-3 in the game.

Friday, April 1 – Cardinals 7, Mets 2

The Cardinals won their second game of the week in a 7-2 contest over the Mets in Jupiter. The lineup was composed entirely of minor leaguers as the afternoon threatened rain and the game was interrupted for a rain delay.

The offense scored three runs in the second inning on a wild pitch, a Kramer Robertson single and a ground out by Julio Rodriguez. A solo home run by Luken Baker and an RBI single by Rodriguez in the fourth added two runs to the lead.

The Cardinals topped the scoring off with two runs in the eighth on a Robertson double and a single by Mike Antico. Cory Spangenberg went 3-for-4 and Brendan Donovan, Baker and Robertson each had two hits.

Connor Thomas

Connor Thomas took the mound for St. Louis to start and pitched two scoreless innings. Jake Walsh started the third and got the first out before the rain delay. When the game resumed Blake Parker took the mound and finished the third with one run given up on two hits. Nick Wittgren pitched a scoreless fourth. Aaron Brooks surrendered one run in two innings pitched. Matthew Liberatore and Cory Thompson combined to throw the final three scoreless innings. Thomas earned the win.

Saturday, April 2 – Cardinals at Astros (canceled due to rain)

Sunday, April 3 – Off day

Bader agrees to two-year deal

The Cardinals and their Gold Glove Award center fielder reached an agreement on a two-year deal that covers Bader’s final two years of arbitration. The deal was announced on Saturday and finalized on Sunday.

The deal pays Bader $4.7 million for the 2022 and 2023 seasons and includes a $1 million signing bonus. The deal reportedly contains escalators that can increase his 2023 salary an additional $2.3 million. The deal comes eight days after the two sides failed to come to an agreement by the March 22 deadline.

Harrison Bader

Bader, 27, had a career year in 2021, both with the bat and with the glove. Bader slashed .267/.324/.460 with 16 home runs and 50 RBI. So far in spring games Bader is excelling with a slash line of .348/.375/.435 in 24 plate appearances.

Defensively, the center fielder won his first Gold Glove Award in 2021, leading all NL center fielders with 14 Outs Above Average and also all NL center fielders with 15 Defensive Runs Saved.

The deal makes fellow outfielder Tyler O’Neill the only remaining unsigned arbitration player. It was reported that the parties are making progress on a deal with the two-time Gold Glove left fielder.

LeBlanc announces retirement

Jon Morosi of MLB Network announced in a Sunday tweet that former Cardinals pitcher Wade LeBlanc has decided to retire. The 37-year-old left-handed pitcher was a mid-season free agent signing by the Cardinals in 2021. He was signed one day after being released by the Texas Rangers.

Wade LeBlanc

LeBlanc appeared in 12 games for St. Louis in 2021, eight as a starter. He posted an ERA of 3.61 in 42.1 innings as a Cardinal. His half season in St. Louis was cut short by an elbow injury in August and he missed the remainder of the season.

LeBlanc started his major league career in 2008 in San Diego, where he played for four seasons. He pitched for seven other teams before closing his career with St. Louis.

Molina takes on winter managing job

In an Instagram Live post by the Navegantes del Magallanes of the Venezuelan Winter League, it was revealed that Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina will be the new manager of that team after he retires at the end of this season.

The Magallanes are the current Venezuelan Winter League Champions and were defeated in the semifinals of the 2022 Caribbean Series by the Caimanes de Baranquilla, the eventual winners of the Series.

In addition to the managerial gig, Molina has confirmed that he is available to lead the Puerto Rican team in the 2023 World Baseball Classic.

Molina is expected to retire from the Cardinals and MLB at the end of the current season and is a favorite to be selected to the Baseball Hall of Fame when he is eligible. Molina is one of a very few modern players to play his entire career with one team. His teammate Adam Wainwright could join him in that exclusive club when he retires, though he has made no decision on potential retirement at this time.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 3/28 The Cardinals optioned RHPs Johan Oviedo, Freddy Pacheco, and Junior Fernandez to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/28 The Cardinals designated RHP Johan Quezada for assignment.
  • 3/28 The Cardinals signed free agent 1B Albert Pujols.
  • 3/30 The Cardinals sent RHP Johan Quezada outright to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/31 The Cardinals optioned 1B Juan Yepez and C Ali Sanchez to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/1 The Cardinals optioned C Ivan Herrera to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 4/3 The Cardinals optioned IF Brendan Donovan to the Memphis Redbirds.

Brendan Donovan

Roster Update

Though the Cardinals still have 33 players in camp, the Opening Day 28-man roster is almost set. The team will go with 15 pitchers. The fifth starter appears to be between Jake Woodford and Drew VerHagen, but both will make the team.

The final relief spot battle is between rookies Jake Walsh, Andre Pallante and Connor Thomas. Walsh is the only one of the trio with a 40-man roster spot.  The five position player reserves/designated hitter choices are Albert Pujols, Corey Dickerson, Edmundo Sosa, Lars Nootbaar and Andrew Knizner.

Update: On Monday morning, Rick Hummel of the Post-Dispatch reports that Thomas made the team as the third lefty in the pen. That means a 40-man roster spot is also needed.

Update no. 2: The P-D report was incorrect. It is Pallante, not Thomas, who made the roster. The 40-man move is TBA.

To see all players remaining in camp by position, check out the always-free Roster Matrix here at The Cardinal Nation.

St. Louis Cardinals Organization Roster Matrix – 2022 Spring Training

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes was placed on the 60-day injured list and will be unavailable until June.
  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder and will be shut down for two weeks. Like Reyes, Flaherty will start the season on the injured list. The length of his stay is undetermined at this time.

Looking Ahead

Spring Training games are winding down. The Cardinals’ final game of Week 3 on Saturday was not held due to rain. There was no game on Sunday. The Cardinals will play their final two games on Monday at home against the Nationals, and Tuesday against the Marlins with the Cardinals as the visiting team.

The regular season begins with Opening Day at home against the Pirates on Thursday, April 7. After a Friday off day, the Cardinals will finish the four-game series with Pittsburgh on Monday, April 11.

The homestand continues when the Royals come to town for a two-game set on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Cardinals will travel to Milwaukee to take on the Brewers in a four-game series beginning Thursday, April 14.

The regular season schedule can be found here.

Blast from the Past

In this week’s Blast, we remember a historic season for one Cardinal hitter that kept fans riveted to games to see if a 37-year-old MLB record would be broken.

Mark McGwire (Getty Images)

Mark McGwire came to the Cardinals in a July 31, 1997, trade from the Oakland Athletics. McGwire’s former manager in Oakland, Tony La Russa, was the manager of the Cardinals. In 1996, McGwire had led baseball in single season home runs with 52. His combined total of home runs in 1997 between the Athletics and the Cardinals was 58.

At the time, former Cardinal Roger Maris held the MLB record for single season home runs with 61. Coming into St. Louis, McGwire and the Cardinals were eyeing this record and the possibility that McGwire could break it. McGwire did in fact set a new record in this first full season in St. Louis in 1998, by hitting his 62nd home run on September 8, 1998.

The following is a day by day and month by month accounting of McGwire’s journey to 70 home runs in his record-breaking 1998 season.

Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire (Bill Greenblatt/Getty Images)

April 1998 – McGwire hit 11 home runs in the month of April. His first home run of the season was on March 31, 1998, in a 6-0 win over the Dodgers. The list of the next ten are:

  • April 2 – One HR in 8-5 win over the Dodgers
  • April 3 – One HR in 13-5 loss to the Padres.
  • April 4 – One HR in 8-6 win over the Padres
  • April 14 – Three HRs in 15-5 win over the Diamondbacks.
  • April 17 – One HR in 8-5 win over the Phillies
  • April 21 – One HR in 5-3 win over the Expos.
  • April 25 – One HR in 8-5 win over the Phillies
  • April 30 – One HR in 8-3 loss to the Cubs

May 1998 – McGwire hit 16 home runs in May.

  • May 1 – One HR in 6-5 loss to the Cubs
  • May 8 – One HR in 9-2 loss to the Mets
  • May 12 – One HR in 6-5 win over the Brewers
  • May 14 – One HR in a 7-3 loss to the Braves
  • May 16 – One HR in a 5-4 win over the Marlins
  • May 18 – One HR in a 7-3 loss to the Marlins
  • May 19 – Three HRs in a 10-8 win over the Phillies
  • May 22 – One HR in a 4-3 win over the Giants
  • May 23 – Two HRs in an 11-10 win over the Giants
  • May 24 – One HR in a 6-1 loss to the Rockies
  • May 29 – One HR in an 8-3 win over the Padres
  • May 30 – One HR in a 3-2 loss to the Padres

June 1998 – McGwire hit 10 home runs in June.

  • June 5 – One HR in a 3-2 loss to the Giants
  • June 8 – One HR in an 8-6 loss to the White Sox
  • June 10 – One HR in a 10-5 loss to the White Sox
  • June 12 – One HR in a 9-4 win over the Diamondbacks
  • June 17 – One HR in a 6-5 loss to the Astros
  • June 18 – One HR in a 7-6 win over the Astros
  • June 24 – One HR in a 13-3 loss to Cleveland
  • June 25 – One HR in an 8-2 loss to Cleveland
  • June 27 – One HR in a 7-2 win over the Twins
  • June 30 – One HR in a 6-1 loss to the Royals

July 1998 – McGwire hit eight home runs in July.

  • July 11 – One HR in a 4-3 win over the Astros
  • July 12 – Two HRs in a 6-4 win over the Astros
  • July 17 – Two HRs in a 4-1 win over the Dodgers
  • July 20 – One HR in a 13-1 over the Padres
  • July 26 – One HR in a 3-1 win over the Rockies
  • July 28 – One HR in a 13-10 loss to the Brewers

August 1998 – McGwire hit 10 home runs in August.

  • Aug 8 – One HR in a 9-8 win over the Cubs
  • Aug 11 – One HR in an 8-3 loss to the Mets
  • Aug 19 – Two HRs in an 8-6 win over the Cubs
  • Aug 20 – One HR in each game of a doubleheader against the Mets; a 2-0 win and a 5-4 loss
  • Aug 22 – One HR in a 14-4 loss to the Pirates
  • Aug 23 – One HR in a 4-3 loss to the Pirates
  • Aug 26 – One HR in a 7-6 loss to the Marlins
  • Aug 30 – One HR in an 8-7 win over the Braves

Sept 1998- McGwire hit 15 home runs in September.

  • Sept 1 – Two HRs in a 7-1 win over the Marlins
  • Sept 2 – Two HRs in a 14-4 win over the Marlins
  • Sept 5 – One HR in a 7-0 win over the Reds
  • Sept 7 – One HR in a 3-2 win over the Cubs (tied the record)
  • Sept 8 – One HR in a 6-3 win over the Cubs (broke the record)
  • Sept 15 – One HR in the first game of a doubleheader, 8-6 loss to the Pirates
  • Sept 18 – One HR in a 5-2 win over the Brewers
  • Sept 20 – One HR in a 11-6 win over the Brewers
  • Sept 25 – One HR in a 6-5 win over the Expos
  • Sept 26 – Two HRs in a 7-6 loss to the Expos
  • Sept 27 – Two HRs in a 6-3 win over the Expos

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2022 Cardinals Prospects – Others’ Consolidated Top 10


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – Week of March 21-27

photo: Albert Pujols (Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

The St. Louis Cardinals welcome back a franchise icon. The club is 5-3 on the spring after dropping both weekend games. Our history feature highlights “The Bottenfield Chain” of trades.



Spring game recaps

Monday, March 21 – Cardinals 7 at Nationals 3

The St. Louis Cardinals took on the Washington Nationals at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches on Monday. Left hander Steven Matz took the mound for the Cardinals and pitched two scoreless innings with two hits and two punchouts. Genesis Cabrera, T.J. McFarland, Kodi Whitley, Kyle Ryan, Freddy Pacheco, Connor Thomas, and Jacob Bosiokovic each followed Matz with an inning pitched. Cabrera, McFarland, and Whitley each gave up a run. Ryan was the winning pitcher.

Edmundo Sosa

The Cardinals offense put three runs on the board in the fifth inning to tie the game on a bases-clearing double by Edmundo Sosa. St. Louis took a 4-3 lead in the seventh on a sac fly by Anderson Tejada. A two run double by Julio Rodriguez increased the lead to 6-3 in the ninth inning and a seventh run scored on a fielder’s choice by Alec Burleson. Nolan Gorman went 2-for-4.

Tuesday, March 22 – Cardinals 4, Marlins 3

The Cardinals defeated the Marlins at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter on Tuesday with St. Louis as the home team. Home runs by Nolan Arenado and Brendan Donovan accounted for three of the Cardinals’ four runs.

The first three runs were scored in the fourth inning. Tommy Edman singled, and Paul Goldschmidt hit a ground rule double. Dylan Carlson drove in Edman on a sac fly. Arenado followed with a two-run long ball to make the score 3-0. In the fifth, a solo home run by Donovan increased the lead to 4-0.

Nolan Arenado

Dakota Hudson got the start for St. Louis and pitched two scoreless innings with one hit, one strikeout and one walk. Jake Woodford, Johan Oviedo and Brandon Waddell pitched the next five scoreless innings. Zach Thompson gave up the Marlins’ three runs in the eighth. Thompson was relieved by James Naile who finished the inning. Andre Pallante tossed a scoreless ninth. Woodford was the winning pitcher.

Wednesday, March 23 – Cardinals 3 at Astros 10

The Cardinals were walloped by the Astros in West Palm Beach on Thursday. Adam Wainwright faced Astros starter Justin Verlander. Wainwright gave up two runs on three hits in three innings pitched. One of the hits was a two run home run. The right hander fanned three and walked none. Aaron Brooks surrendered three more runs in three innings of relief following Wainwright. Nick Wittgren pitched a scoreless seventh. Jake Walsh started the eighth and had a tough outing. Walsh gave up five runs while recording only one out. Kyle Ryan relieved Walsh and got the final two outs of the eighth. Wainwright took the loss.

St. Louis’ offense scored two runs in the sixth on RBI singled by Edmundo Sosa and Harrison Bader. Brendan Donovan drove in the final run in the ninth on a double. Sosa, Paul Goldschmidt, Luken Baker, and Ali Sanchez each had two hits.

Thursday, March 24 – Off day

Friday, March 25 – Cardinals 5, Nationals 4

The Cardinals edged the Nationals in a Friday contest at Roger Dean Stadium. St. Louis took an early lead and added to it to prevail over a tough Nationals team.

St. Louis scored three in the second on an RBI single by Paul DeJong and a two-run double by Harrison Bader. The offense added two additional runs in the fifth on a wild pitch and an RBI single by Paul Goldschmidt. Bader and Nolan Arenado each two hits.

Harrison Bader

Drew VerHagen was the Cardinal starter. The right hander surrendered two runs in three innings pitched on two home runs. He struck out one. Genesis Cabrera, Ryan Helsley, and Andre Pallante followed with a scoreless inning each. Freddy Pacheco gave up two runs, one earned in the seventh. James Naile and Jacob Bosiokovic followed with a scoreless eighth and ninth. VerHagen took the win.

Saturday, March 26 – Cardinals 2, Marlins 9

The Cardinals lost to the Marlins in Jupiter on Saturday. St. Louis was the home team. Starter Steven Matz had a tough day, giving up six runs on seven hits in the first inning of the game. Cory Thompson came in to relieve Matz with two outs and got the final out. Matz re-entered the game in the second inning and pitched a scoreless inning. Johan Oviedo followed in the third and surrendered three runs, two earned, in 2 2/3 innings. Junior Fernandez, Giovanny Gallegos, Kodi Whitley, and Jake Walsh each pitched a scoreless inning. Matz took the loss.

The Cardinals offense scored one run in the third on a solo home run by Paul Goldschmidt. Juan Yepez drove in the second run in the seventh on a single to left. The Cardinals managed six hits in the game that included a double by Corey Dickerson and singles by Kramer Robertson, Tyler O’Neill and Luken Baker.

Sunday, March 27 – Cardinals 3 at Mets 7

The Cardinals suffered their second consecutive loss, this one to the Mets in Port St. Lucie on Sunday. The offense faced the Mets’ two best pitchers in Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer and did little.

deGrom got the start against Cardinal starter Dakota Hudson. Hudson pitched three innings and gave up four runs on three hits, struck out four and walked one. The right hander took the loss. Hudson was relieved by Jake Woodford and Matthew Liberatore. Woodford allowed one run in three innings, and Liberatore surrendered two runs in two innings.

St. Louis center fielder Harrison Bader had two hits against deGrom with the second one driving in the first run for the Redbirds in the third inning. Catcher Ali Sanchez doubled in the second run in the seventh. A long Anderson Tejada home run in the ninth off Scherzer was final St. Louis score. Bader and Alec Burleson each had two hits.

Five of seven arbitration players reach agreement

The deadline for submitting arbitration salaries came and went on Tuesday, March 22. By the end of the day the Cardinals announced agreement had been reached on 2022 contracts with five of  seven arbitration eligible players.

The first agreement announced was with injured right handed ace Jack Flaherty. Flaherty and the Cardinals agreed to a one-year contract for $5 million. Subsequent agreements announced were Jordan Hicks ($937,000), Dakota Hudson ($1.05 million), Giovanny Gallegos ($2.41 million) and Alex Reyes ($2.85 million).

Tyler O’Neill

Two players did not reach agreement with the Cardinals, Tyler O’Neill and Harrison Bader. O’Neill, a first year arbitration eligible player, filed for $4.15 million. The Cardinals came in significantly lower at $3.4 million. O’Neill had a fantastic season in 2021, hitting .286/.352/.560 with 34 home runs and 80 RBI, making the Cardinals low offer rather surprising. O’Neill also won his second Gold Glove Award in 2021.

Bader, 27, also had a much improved season in 2021, slashing .267/.324/.460 with 16 home runs and 50 RBI. Bader is a second year arbitration eligible player who was paid $2 million for 2021. The center fielder filed at $4.8 million while the Cardinals countered with $3.8 million. Bader won his first Gold Glove in 2021.

The Cardinals are operating as a “file and trial” team, meaning no agreement by the deadline ends negotiations and leads to an arbitration hearing. With the lockout delaying the arbitration process, hearings will take place at various times during the season.

There is no rule preventing the parties from reaching an agreement prior to hearing, but “file and trial” would seem to end that possibility. Last season the Cardinals went to hearing with Jack Flaherty and lost. Prior to last year, the Cardinals hadn’t gone to hearing since Michael Wacha in 2017, a hearing the Cardinals won.

Cardinals acquire trio

The Cardinals continue to build roster depth for the 2022 season with three acquisitions this past week.

On Monday, March 21 the Cardinals claimed LHP Packy Naughton off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. The 25-year-old Naughton was selected by the Reds in the ninth round of the 2017 draft and traded to the Angels on August 21, 2020. Naughton made his debut with the Angels on August 8, 2021.

Packy Naughton

The left hander started five games for the Angels in 2021 and posted an ERA of 6.35 in 22 2/3 innings pitched. Naughton took the final spot on the 40 man roster and was optioned to Memphis on Friday.

On Friday, the Cardinals announced the signing of free agent 2B Cory Spangenberg to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. The 31-year-old last played in the major leagues in 2019 for the Brewers. Prior to that he spent five seasons with the San Diego Padres. Spangenberg played with the Siebu Lions in Japan in 2020-21.

Cory Spangenberg

The Cardinals also announced the signing of RHP Blake Parker to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Parker, 36, has pitched in nine major league seasons with the Cubs, Mariners, Yankees, Angels, Twins, Phillies, and finally Cleveland in 2021. He has a career record of 16-11 and an ERA of 3.47 in 350 games almost entirely as a reliever.

Blake Parker

Andrew Miller announces retirement

Former Cardinals left-handed reliever Andrew Miller publicly announced his retirement from baseball after 16 major league seasons. The announcement came on Thursday, March 24.

Andrew Miller

Miller played his final three years with the Cardinals, signing a three-year contract with St. Louis on December 21, 2018. He began his major league career in Detroit in 2006 where he debuted on August 30 of that year. He played the 2007 season with the Tigers and was traded in December to the Marlins.

After three seasons in Miami, the Marlins traded Miller to the Red Sox, who then signed him to a free agent contract for three years. The Red Sox traded him in his final contract year to Baltimore. He became a free agent at the end of 2014 and signed with the Yankees.

The Yankees traded Miller to Cleveland in July 2016, where he excelled in postseason play from 2016-2018. He became a free agent after the 2018 season and signed with the Cardinals to pitch out of the bullpen. In three seasons in St. Louis Miller posted a record of 6-7 with an ERA of 4.34.

Miller’s 16 year career included two All Star game selections and the 2015 AL Reliever of the Year award.

Most recently Miller, as a member of the MLBPA Executive Committee, was an integral part of the union’s team that negotiated the agreement that ended the lockout. Miller voted against the final agreement along with the other seven members of the Committee, but the agreement was passed by the union representatives by a vote of 26-4. Miller along with Max Scherzer were the two player spokesmen for the union in the final press conference announcing the agreement.

Pujols returns

Late Sunday, Katie Woo of The Athletic reported that the Cardinals have had increased interest in bringing back free agent Albert Pujols for 2022. Later in the evening, Derrick Goold of the Post-Dispatch reported the deal is done pending a physical.  National writers Bob Nightengale and Mark Feinsand report the contract is one-year, $2.5 million.

Albert Pujols

Though it is not yet official, the assumption is that the 42-year-old would be the team’s designated hitter against left-handed pitching. Rookies Juan Yepez or Lars Nootbaar may have lost their roster spot with St. Louis as a result. The longer shot chances of Nolan Gorman and Brendan Donovan to make the team were also reduced.

The likely five-man bench (that would also cover the designated hitter position) is: Andrew Knizner, Edmundo Sosa, Corey Dickerson, Pujols and one other.

A 40-man roster move to clear space will also be required when the Pujols signing is official.

Transactions

  • 3/21 The Cardinals claimed LHP Packy Naughton off waivers from the Angels.
  • 3/22 The Cardinals optioned LHP Brandon Waddell to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals optioned RHP T.J. Zeuch to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals optioned LHP Packy Naughton to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals selected the contract of RHP Aaron Brooks from the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals placed RHP Alex Reyes on the 60-day injured list.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals optioned RHP Johan Quezada to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals optioned RHP Angel Rondon to the Memphis Redbirds.
  • 3/25 The Cardinals signed free agent 2B Cory Spangenberg to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
  • 3/26 The Cardinals signed free agent RHP Blake Parker to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes will begin the season on the 60-day injured list and will be out at least two months.
  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder and will be shut down for two weeks. Like Reyes, Flaherty will start the season on the injured list. The length of his stay is undetermined at this time.
  • 2B Nolan Gorman was scratched from Sunday’s lineup due to back tightness.

Looking Ahead

Spring Training games continue. The Cardinals ended the first full week of spring training with a game against the Mets on Sunday. On Monday the team plays the Astros in Jupiter. After an off day on Tuesday, the Cardinals play the Nationals in Palm Beach on Wednesday, and the Marlins at home as the visiting team on Thursday.

To begin the month of April the Cardinals play the Mets in Jupiter on Friday, and the Astros in Palm Beach on Saturday. The team is off on Sunday to end the week. There are two more games on the spring training schedule on April 4 and April 5 and then spring training comes to a close. The Cardinals begin the regular season at home on April 7 against the Pirates. The complete schedule can be found here.

The late Hot Stove season continues through spring training. The Cardinals have added LHP Packy Naughton off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. They also added two more players on minor league contracts, 2B Cory Spangenberg, and RHP Blake Parker.

The deadline for submitting arbitration salary figures was March 22. The Cardinals came to agreements with RHP Jack Flaherty as well as RHPs Alex Reyes, Dakota Hudson, Jordan Hicks, and Giovanny Gallegos. No agreement was reached with LF Tyler O’Neill and CF Harrison Bader, which means both players will go to arbitration hearings later this month.

The Major League phase of the 2021 Rule 5 draft has been cancelled and will return in December 2022.

Blast from the Past

This week’s Blast from the Past focuses on a significant trade that occurred over 20 years ago that left a trail of other trades that flowed from it over a two-decade span. What has been referred to by many as “The Bottenfield Chain” started with a trade that occurred on March 23, 2000. This brief history follows this chain to its eventual end in 2019.

On March 23, 2000, the Cardinals made a major trade, acquiring outfielder Jim Edmonds from the Anaheim Angels in exchange for right handed pitcher Kent Bottenfield, and infielder Adam Kennedy.

Kent Bottenfield (AP photo)

Bottenfield was acquired by the Cardinals as a free agent signing on January 8, 1998. The pitcher bounced between four teams, the Expos, Rockies, Giants, and Cubs from 1992 until the end of the 1997 season. Bottenfield began as a starter with the Expos but spent some time in bullpens as well. When the Cardinals signed him he was signed as a starter and had his best season in 1999 in St. Louis. He posted a record of 18-7 and an ERA of 3.97.

Kennedy was a first round draft pick of the Cardinals in the 1997 draft and debuted with the Cardinals in August of 1999. He hit .255/.284/.402 in 33 games in St. Louis.

Jim Edmonds (Getty Images)

Edmonds came to the Cardinals with seven seasons with the Angels under his belt and a slash line of .290/.359/.498 with 121 HRs and 408 RBI. Edmonds was signed to a 6 year extension worth $57 million dollars. Edmonds excelled as a Cardinal, winning six of his eight Gold Gloves in center field while in St. Louis and being selected to the All Star team three times. In his eight Cardinal seasons he slashed .285/.393/.555 with 241 HRs and 713 RBI.

Bottenfield’s career took a nosedive after the trade, and he was traded again mid-season 2000 by the Angels to the Phillies. He became a free agent at the end of the 2000 season and signed a one year contract with the Houston Astros. At the end of the season he was out of baseball.

Kennedy played seven seasons with the Angels then returned to St. Louis on a three year contract in 2006. He missed most of the 2007 season with a knee injury and was released by the Cardinals after the 2008 season. He bounced around with Tampa Bay, Oakland, Washington, Seattle and the Dodgers, both minor league and major league for the next three seasons before ending his baseball career with the Dodgers in 2012.

The Cardinals traded Edmonds on December 14, 2007, to the San Diego Padres for David Freese. The second link of the chain was forged.

David Freese (USA TODAY Sports)

The career of David Freese in St. Louis is well known and will not be detailed here. Suffice it to say that the St. Louis native made history with his 2011 postseason performance. But even the greatest careers have an end and Freese’s time in St. Louis ended after the 2013 season when he was traded to the Angels for center fielder Peter Bourjos and outfielder Randal Grichuk. Chain link three was forged.

Bourjos was a defensive whiz but could never get his bat going in St. Louis. After two seasons he was placed on waivers and was claimed by the Phillies. Randal Grichuk lasted longer than Bourjos. The outfielder had the promise of power with the bat that was too inconsistent to be realized. He was an above average defender at all three outfield positions, but the bat never progressed enough to garner him a full time position in the outfield. Grichuk was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays on January 19, 2018, for pitchers Dominic Leone and Conner Greene. The fourth link in the chain was forged.

Greene was gone after one season, claimed off waivers by the Royals. Greene threw hard but could not throw strikes.

Leone spent a good chunk of 2018 on the disabled list with a nerve issue in his arm. He finished the season with a 4.50 ERA in 29 appearances out of the bullpen. In 2019 Leone spent much of the first half of the season at Triple-A Memphis. He was called up for the final time in August of 2019 and finished the season in St. Louis with 40+ innings out of the bullpen and an ERA of 5.53.  Leone was designated for assignment on November 20, 2019 and released five days later.  The Bottenfield chain was finally broken.


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Cardinals Minor League Camp Movers and Shakers – Mid-Camp 2022


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The Cardinal Nation 2022 Prospect Guide is back for its fifth year. It includes 276 pages of in-depth commentary about the very best St. Louis Cardinals minor leaguers, including dozens of color photos. Order your PDF or printed book copy today!

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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – Week of March 14-20

photo: Jack Flaherty (Sam Navarro/USA TODAY Sports)

The St. Louis Cardinals signed a left-handed hitting outfielder but lost two pitchers due to injury. The club won its first two spring training games. Our history feature highlights the 1985 National League Champion Cardinals.



Spring game recaps

Friday, March 18 – Cardinals 4, Astros 2

In the first game of the shortened Grapefruit League season, the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the visiting Houston Astros at Roger Dean Stadium. Veteran right hander Adam Wainwright got the start and gave up one run on two hits in two innings pitched. He struck out one and walked none. Five pitchers followed Wainwright to the mound. Genesis Cabrera, T.J. McFarland, and Kyle Ryan each pitched a scoreless inning. Aaron Brooks tossed two scoreless innings with five strikeouts. Matthew Liberatore surrendered one run in two innings of relief. Cabrera took the win.

Aaron Brooks

The Astros got on the board first in the second inning. The Cardinals scored two in the third to take the lead on a two run single by Nolan Arenado. In the fourth Andrew Knizner thumped a two run home run to run up the score to 4-1.

The Astros made it 4-2 in the fifth. Neither team scored in the final four innings. The Cardinal offense had three hits, the Knizner long ball, the RBI single by Arenado and a single by Paul DeJong.

The Cardinals are 1-0 in Grapefruit League play.

Sunday, March 20 – Cardinals 6 at Mets 4

The Cardinals defeated the New York Mets at Port St. Lucie on Sunday. The starting lineup remained the same on the road as it was in Friday’s game at home. The Cardinal offense wasted no time and brought three runs home in the first inning on a home run by Dylan Carlson. Paul Goldschmidt drew a walk and Tyler O’Neill singled to left field. Carlson blasted a three-run long ball over the left center field wall to make it 3-0.

Dylan Carlson

The Mets responded in the second inning with one run against starter Miles Mikolas. The Cardinals made it 4-1 in the fourth when Goldschmidt popped a solo home run to left center.

The score remained at 4-1 until the seventh inning. The Mets brought it closer with two runs on a fly ball to right field that just missed the glove of Lars Nootbaar.

In the eighth the Cardinals added a run to increase the lead to 5-3. Nootbaar tripled and scored on a single by Jordan Walker. The Mets made it a one run game again in the bottom frame of the eighth.

In the ninth the Redbirds added an insurance run. Juan Yepez singled then advanced to second on a passed ball. Nootbaar drove in Yepez on a single. The Mets rallied in the bottom of the ninth and got two runners on but could not get them home. The Cardinals took the win 6-4.

Miles Mikolas pitched two innings and gave up one run on two hits. The right hander fanned three and walked one. Six pitchers followed Mikolas, beginning with Drew VerHagen who tossed two scoreless innings. Nick Wittgren and Jake Walsh followed with a scoreless inning each. Zach McCallister surrendered two runs in the seventh, and Trent Baker relinquished one run in the eighth. Junior Fernandez tossed a scoreless ninth to earn the save. Mikolas got the win.

The Cardinals are 2-0 in Grapefruit League play.

 

Cardinals sign free agent OF Corey Dickerson

On Friday, March 18 the Cardinals announced the signing of free agent outfielder Corey Dickerson to a one year contract. The deal can reach $5 million through incentives.

Corey Dickerson

The 32-year-old Dickerson has six years of major league experience with six teams, most recently in Toronto. The left handed outfielder was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 29th round in June of 2009. He made his debut in Denver on June 22, 2013.

Dickerson is capable of playing all three outfield positions but has played primarily in left field where he earned a Gold Glove while playing with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2018.

The left hander has a career .845 OPS against right-handed pitching and most recently slashed .282/.329/.450 with 4 home runs and 15 RBI in 46 games with Toronto.

It is expected that Dickerson’s role will be as a designated hitter and pinch hitter off the bench and will likely get some playing time in the outfield as a fourth outfielder.

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.

Transactions

  • 3/18 The Cardinals signed free agent OF Corey Dickerson

Injury Report

  • RHP Alex Reyes (frayed right labrum) has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and has received a stem cell injection in his shoulder. Reyes will begin the season on the injured list and could be out for as long as two months.

Alex Reyes

  • RHP Jack Flaherty (right shoulder) had imaging done on his shoulder which revealed inflammation as well as a small tear called a SLAP tear (superior labrum and posterior). Flaherty told the media the tear has been there for several years and is unrelated to the inflammation. Flaherty received a PRP injection in the shoulder and will be shut down for two weeks. Like Reyes, Flaherty will start the season on the injured list. The length of his stay is undetermined at this time.

Jack Flaherty

  • RHPs Ryan Helsley and Junior Fernandez, who were placed on the 60-day injured list in September 2021 are reportedly healthy and ready to play for 2022. Both pitchers are competing for a spot in the bullpen. Fernandez suffered a lat strain late in the 2021 season and Helsey was put on the injured list with elbow issues and had surgery on his left knee.
  • C Yadier Molina has not reported to spring training due to personal issues. He is scheduled to report on Monday, March 21.

Looking Ahead

Spring Training games have begun. The Cardinals played their first game against the Astros on Friday, March 18, winning over Houston 4-2. They will play 14 more games before coming north to begin the regular season. The Cardinals begin the regular season at home on April 7 against the Pirates. The complete schedule can be found here.

The end of the lockout brings the Hot Stove back, with teams rushing to complete their rosters before the regular season begins. The Cardinals have added two new pitchers, Drew VerHagen and Nick Wittgren, and within the last few days have signed outfielder Corey Dickerson. RHPs Zach McCallister and Aaron Brooks were signed to minor league contracts with an invite to spring training.

The new date for submitting arbitration salary figures is March 22. Arbitration hearings will be conducted during the season. The Cardinals have seven arbitration eligible players. Four of the seven are remaining three, Tyler O’Neill, Giovanny Gallegos, and Dakota Hudson, are first year arbitration eligible.

The Rule 5 draft has been cancelled and will return in December of 2022.

Blast from the Past

This week Blast from the Past concludes the series on the top Cardinals teams in franchise history. The top four teams were dominated by teams of the World War II era. This last series installment advances forward four decades to a World Series team that lost a heartbreaking series in seven games to their cross-state American League rivals.

Whitey Herzog

The 1985 St. Louis Cardinals finished their season with a record of 101-61 and a first place finish in the National League East Division. The team was managed by Whitey Herzog and the GM that season was former player Dal Maxvill. The 1985 team played their home games in Busch Stadium II.

The primary starting position players for the 1985 team were C Tom Nieto, 1B Jack Clark, 2B Tom Herr, SS Ozzie Smith, 3B Terry Pendleton, LF Vince Coleman, CF Willie McGee, and RF Andy Van Slyke.

Starting pitchers for this team were John Tudor, Joaquin Andujar, Danny Cox, Kurt Kepshire, and Bob Forsch. The bullpen included current Cardinal broadcaster Rick Horton, Ken Dayley, Jeff Lahti, Bill Campbell and Neil Allen. Todd Worrell was also part of the Cardinal bullpen, and he played a role in an incident that set the stage for the team’s World Series loss.

The 1985 team finished 3 games ahead of the second place New York Mets, a 98 win team. The Cardinals biggest lead in the season was four games and they spent a total of 89 days in first place.

Willie McGee

The top offensive player for the 1985 team was CF Willie McGee, who won the 1985 NL batting title with an average of .353 in 1952 games. McGee led the NL in hits with 216 and triples with 18. He was named the NL MVP that season and was also honored with an All Star selection, a Silver Slugger award in CF and a Gold Glove in CF.

The top starting pitcher was Tudor, who finished the season 21-8 with an ERA of 1.93.  Tudor led all of the MLB in WHIP (0.938) and Shutouts (10). He finished second in the Cy Young vote.

Andujar also won 21 games in 1985 but with an ERA of 3.40. Cox won 18 games with a 2.88 ERA.

The longest winning streak for the 1985 team seven games. They won seven games three times that season, from Aug 21 to Aug 27, Sept 13 to Sept 18, and Sept 20 to Sept 26.

The longest losing streak was four games on three occasions, from April 9 to April 13, April 25 to April 28, and Sept 7 to Sept 10.

The most runs scored by the 1985 Cardinals was 14 in two games. First on May 15, a 14-4 win over the San Diego Padres, and again on May 21, 14-0 over the Braves.

The most runs allowed was 17 on August 20 in a 17-2 loss to the Houston Astros.

The Cardinals met the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL Championship Series. The Cardinals prevailed over the Dodgers 4 games to 2. Game 5 of that series was famous for the Jack Buck call of Ozzie Smith’s historic home run in which he said, “Go crazy, folks, go crazy!” That home run was the first ever home run Smith hit from the left side.

The Cardinals advanced to the World Series against the cross state AL pennant winner the Kansas City Royals. The series went all seven games and Game 1 was played in Kansas City with a Cardinal win of 3-1 over the Royals. It was the first Saturday night game in World Series history. The winning pitcher for the Cardinals was Tudor.

Game 2 was another win for St. Louis in Royals Stadium. The Cardinals won 4-2 with all four runs scored in the ninth inning. The winning pitcher was reliever Ken Dayley. The runs scored on a single by Jack Clark and a bases clearing double by Terry Pendleton.

Busch Stadium was the venue for Game 3, which was won by the Royals 6-1. The Cardinal offense only one run off Royals ace Bret Saberhagen. The run scored in the sixth on consecutive singles by Ozzie Smith, Tom Herr, and Clark.

Game 4 in St. Louis was a 3-0 win for the Cardinals. Tudor was once again the winning pitcher. Tito Landrum and Willie McGee each hit solo home runs. Pendleton tripled to score the third run.

The Cardinals took a 3-1 series lead into Game 5 at Busch Stadium. The Royals won 6-1 against starter Bob Forsch. St. Louis scored its only run in the first inning off Royals starter Danny Jackson on consecutive doubles by Herr and Clark.

Don Denkinger, Todd Worrell, Tommy Herr

The series moved back to Kansas City for the final two games. Game Six started as a pitcher’s duel between Danny Cox and Charlie Liebrandt. The game was scoreless until the Cardinals took a 1-0 lead in the 8th inning when Pendleton singled and scored on a single by pinch hitter Brian Harper. In the bottom of the ninth, reliever Todd Worrell took over from reliever Ken Dayley. The first batter was pinch hitter Jorge Orta. Orta hit a bouncer between first and second that was fielded by Clark. Clark tossed the ball to Worrell who touched first base ahead of Orta. Instead of it being the first out, first base umpire Don Denkinger called Orta safe, even though video showed him clearly out. There was no instant replay in 1985 so the bad call stood. Though the Cardinals argued, Denkinger refused to reverse the call. The Royals went on to score two runs and won the game 2-1.

Game 7 was a disaster for the Cardinals. It was as if the controversy in Game 6 took the wind out of the Cardinals’ sails. The Royals bulldozed the Cardinals to the tune of 11 runs. Tudor fell apart and was removed in the third inning. The Royals led 5-0 at the end of the third inning, then blew the game open with six runs in the fifth inning. Five Cardinals pitchers went to the mound in the fifth starting with Bill Campbell and followed by Lahti, Rick Horton, Joaquin Andujar and Forsch.

The Cardinals would not win another World Series until 2006. The Royals did not even play in the postseason again until 2014 and won their only other World Series in 2015. Game 6 lives in infamy in Cardinal fans memories and is the source of deepening the rivalry between the Cardinals and the Royals. Don Denkinger later admitted that the call was wrong, but the damage was done.


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Cardinals Minor League Camp Working Rosters – 03/18/22


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History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Free Agency Era Begins

photo: Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally (Baseball Hall of Fame)

The Cardinal Nation’s series highlighting the history of labor struggles in MLB continues with a lockout to protest the onset of free agency. Author Marilyn Green is a retired attorney with background in employment law.



The 1975 arbitration decision granting free agency to pitchers Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally ushered in a new era of economics in Major League Baseball. As the appeals on the decision were pending, the owners and the union began negotiations on a new Basic Agreement. Unsurprisingly these negotiations were tense and fraught with hurdles. With the Peter Seitz decision in hand, the players were satisfied with the one-year option and then freedom to pick their next destination. Owners on the other hand wanted no such arrangement and their demands for a new negotiated reserve system kept the path to a new Basic Agreement very bumpy.

Peter Seitz

The previous Basic Agreement had expired on December 31, 1975, and the owners came to the union with threats of a lockout and a refusal to discuss a new reserve system while the appeals were still pending. They also kept Messersmith in limbo regarding a new contract, as all owners would make no bid on his services without approval from Commissioner Bowie Kuhn. The league’s stalling tactics kept the negotiations at a stalemate into late February 1976.

The threats of a lockout became a reality as the owners locked the players out of spring training on March 1. Executive Director Marvin Miller advised his unsigned players not to sign contracts, and some players set up workouts near their spring training camps to keep in shape while they awaited the end of the lockout. Miller worried about his players’ resolve, and in fact one player, Jim Palmer, ignored Miller’s advice and signed a contract with the Orioles.

On March 10, 1976, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis upheld the Seitz decision. The owners decided not to pursue the case to the Supreme Court. The final end to the litigation brought a softening of the hard line stance of the owners and negotiations opened up on a new reserve system.

In the meantime, Messersmith and his agent let the teams know that he would start accepting offers on March 16. His prior team, the Dodgers, declared they would not be a bidder. Dodgers owner Peter O’Malley, one of the wealthier owners, pleaded poverty and told Messersmith he couldn’t afford him. (McNally had previously planned to retire – and did.)

Despite opening up real negotiations on the reserve system, the league was not going to give much, hoping to wait the players out and keep the pressure of the lockout on. Their proposals were meant to fail, such as keeping players in reserve for 10 years, then allowing them to receive offers from only eight teams. It also proposed compensation to teams who lose players to free agency. The union offered free agency after six years, with some modest compensation to teams for player loss and a larger cap on number of team offers.

The league’s stand on keeping the players locked out until they got their way failed after 17 days. Commissioner Kuhn, under pressure from television networks and large market owners like Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, ordered the end of the lockout and spring training camps opened on March 18 under his “best interest of baseball” powers.

Bowie Kuhn

Small market owners such as Ed Fitzgerald, owner of the Brewers, were furious at Kuhn. Miller’s response to the action was to rescind his request that players hold off on signing contracts. Miller also took the opportunity to check in on the Messersmith situation, as there was some indication that the owners had been colluding to keep any offers being made to the former Dodgers hurler. False rumors had been started about the health of Messersmith, allegedly at the behest of O’Malley. Miller asked former player Al Campanis, who was the GM of the Dodgers, to quash the rumors. Eventually Messersmith was signed by Braves owner Ted Turner to a three-year deal.

The signing of newly made free agents continued throughout March and April. The large list of unsigned players was reduced to 76 by April 20, but some high profile players such as Tom Seaver and Reggie Jackson remained unsigned. The player loss by some teams was high with the Oakland Athletics likely to lose most if not all of their star players. Meanwhile, the negotiations for a new Basic Agreement had stalled over the league’s intransigence over their reserve system demands.

The negotiations picked up again in late May and the sides resumed daily discussion with the principals on both sides pared down to a minimum. The union was represented by only Miller and his chief counsel Dick Moss.

While these talks were ongoing, Charlie Finley, the owner of the Athletics, decided to take matters in his own hands and not wait for a deal. Facing the decimation of his team, and not wanting to lose his players without compensation, Finley started selling his players off. He traded Reggie Jackson to the Orioles. He followed that by selling Joe Rudi and Rollie Fingers for cash to the Red Sox, and Vida Blue to the Yankees. He received a total of $3.5 million for all three players.

Charles O, Finley

Finley’s actions were not received well by some owners. On June 16, Commissioner Kuhn, once again citing his “best interests of baseball” powers, voided the sale of the three players. The action was allegedly at the behest of O’Malley. What Miller feared was that Kuhn’s unilateral action, if upheld by the courts, would give precedence for blocking future free agent signings.

Miller was intent on getting language in any new deal preventing unilateral action by the Commissioner on free agent signings. The talks picked up speed in June and July as the season neared the All-Star break without a deal. The union’s insistence on a 10-year service time was reduced to seven years. The sides also agreed to draft pick compensation for teams losing free agents. The signing team would forfeit a draft pick to the losing team as recompense.

As the All-Star break was upon them, the owners offered a six-year service time requirement for free agency. Kuhn eventually relented and a deal was struck to limit his power to interfere in free agent contracts. On July 12, 1976, a deal was reached. The agreement was for four years and was retroactive to cover the 1976 season and terminate on December 31, 1979.

The principals to the deal were Kuhn, MLB counsel John Gaherin, AL President Lee McPhail, NL President Chub Feeney, and Labor Committee counsel Barry Rona for the owners. The principals for the union were Miller and Moss.

The terms were as follows:

  • Free Agency – Players who played their option year in 1976 become free agents at the conclusion of the 1976 season. Players with unsigned contracts for 1977 season become free agents at the end of the 1977 season. Players with multi year contracts become free agents at the end of the next regular season if they choose not to sign. All players become eligible for free agency after completing six years of service time. A player who enters free agency may negotiate with 12 teams in 1976 and 13 teams in 1977. The teams will be decided based upon a draft conducted in November.
  • Free Agency compensation – A team losing a free agent gets draft pick compensation from the signing team. A signing team that finishes the season in the top 12 relinquishes a first round pick. A signing team in the bottom 12 gives up a second round pick.
  • Right to demand trade – A player with at least five years of service time is permitted to demand a trade from his team. To do so, the player must put the demand in writing within a 15 day period between October 15 or the end of the World Series, whichever is later. The player is allowed veto a trade with six teams. If no trade is arranged by March 15, the player becomes a free agent.
  • Salary arbitration – The provision remains in effect from the prior CBA. If a player is eligible for free agency, his salary dispute can be submitted to arbitration on consent by both player and team.
  • Minimum salary – Minimum salary raised to $19,000 for 1976 and 1977. Minimum salary for 1978 and 1979 increases to $21,000.
  • Pension – Owner contribution increased to $8.3 million.
  • Ban on collusion – Both the union and the league are banned from interfering in the free agent marketplace.

The agreement was ratified by the union on August 2, 1976. The agreement was set to expire on December 31, 1979.

Marvin Miller

As the decade of the seventies entered its final stages, the MLBPA had much to celebrate. The union had just signed off on what was considered a historic victory for players. The path to free agency took almost a century, a century filled with a multitude of hits and misses on the labor side. At the end of this road the players were looking forward to the future, a future that they hoped would be prosperous for not only them but the game of baseball.

For the owners, however, the future was filled with frustration, anger, and for many a thirst for retribution for what they saw as interference in their businesses. For these owners, the fight was not over. The next decade would prove a challenge for everyone.

To be continued…

Prior articles in this series

History of Labor Struggles in Major League Baseball: The Early Years

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Rise of the AL and Road to Antitrust Exemption

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Supreme Court and Baseball’s Antitrust Exemption

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: Post World War II

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The MLBPA and Marvin Miller

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The First Collective Bargaining Agreement

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The Fight for Free Agency

History of Labor Struggles in MLB: The End of the Reserve System

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2022 Cardinals Minor League Spring Game Schedules


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St. Louis Cardinals MLB Notebook – Week of March 7-13

The MLB lockout ended with the full regular season saved. The Cardinals have signed two right-handers likely slated for the bullpen. Our history feature highlights the 1943 National League Champion Cardinals.



The lockout ends and baseball begins

After 99 days with no end in sight, the MLB lockout came to an official end on Thursday, March 12 with an agreement between the league and the MLBPA on a five-year collective bargaining agreement. Late Thursday afternoon, the union voted on whether to accept the last MLB proposal. The vote was 26-12 in favor. The owners voted unanimously for the proposal a few hours later.

The 12 “no” votes came from all eight of the members of the MLBPA executive board plus four team representatives. One of the team no votes came from St. Louis Cardinals team rep Jack Flaherty.

The agreement contains many provisions, but the following are some key changes.

  • The minimum salary for pre-arbitration players rose to $700,000 for 2022, with increases each year after to $720,000 (2023), $740,000 (2024), $760,000 (2025) and $780,000 (2026). The rise to $700,000 is a 22.7% increase over the 2021 salary.
  • The Competitive Balance Tax, which was the major issue of contention between the two sides, will have minimum thresholds that rise progressively from $230 million in 2022, up to $244 million in 2026. The 2022 threshold is a rise of 9.5% from the 2021 minimum threshold. A fourth tier threshold was added for 2022 of $290 million, which is a change from the prior three tiers. Many are calling this additional tier the “Steve Cohen tax” after the Mets new owner who has shown himself to be a prolific spender. The tax penalties for the first three tiers remain the same as in the prior CBA, but the fourth tier has a high penalty of 80%.
  • The postseason will expand to 12 teams. The format includes a bye for the top two division winners, who will be seeded # 1 and #2. The third division winner will be seeded #3. Three Wild Card teams and the #3 division winner will play in a three-game Wild Card round. The #3 seed will play the #6 seed, with the winner opposing the #2 seed in the Division Series. The #1 seed will play the winner of the #4 vs #5 game in the Division Series. There will be no re-seeding in the Division Series. The game 163 tiebreakers will disappear. NFL style tiebreaker formulas will be used.
  • A pre-arbitration bonus pool is established for each year of the CBA. The pool is $50 million dollars to be split among the top 100 players who have not yet reached arbitration eligibility. MVP and Cy Young Award winners will receive a $2.5 million bonus. Next places in both the MVP and Cy Young will receive $1.75 million (2nd place), $1.5 million (3rd place), and $1 million each for 4thMVP and 4th and 5th Cy Young. For Rookie of the Year, the winner will receive $750K and 2nd place gets $500K.
  • Players with options remaining can only be optioned a maximum of 5 times per season. There were no limits in prior CBAs.
  • There will be a universal designated hitter starting in the 2022 season.
  • A draft lottery for the top six picks in the MLB draft is being established. All 18 teams which do not reach the playoffs are eligible for the lottery. The bottom three teams in record will have a 16.5 percent chance while the remaining 15 teams will have a 15 percent chance. Revenue sharing teams are limited to two consecutive years in the lottery. The larger market non-revenue sharing teams will not be eligible in consecutive years.
  • Arbitration eligible players will receive guaranteed contracts for the first time in CBA history.

Spring training will be shortened, with games starting on March 17 and extending through April 5. Opening day of the 162-game regular season will be April 7. The regular season will be extended three days. Cancelled games will be made up on off days and via nine inning doubleheaders throughout the season.

The agreement will run until December 1, 2026.

Cardinals sign two pitchers

The ink had barely dried on the new Collective Bargaining Agreement when the Cardinals announced the first signing of the post lockout Hot Stove, right-handed pitcher Drew VerHagen to a two-year deal.

VerHagen is a six-year MLB veteran who spent the last two seasons pitching for the Nippon Ham Fighters of the NBP in Japan. His aggregate record was 5-8 with an ERA of 3.84.

Drew VerHagen

The 31-year-old pitched in the major leagues from 2014 to 2019 for the Detroit Tigers. He compiled a record of 10-10 with an ERA of 5.11 in those six seasons, mostly as a reliever. It is likely that VerHagen will be assigned to St. Louis’ bullpen but has the flexibility to start if needed.

On Sunday, the Cardinals announced the signing of another right-handed reliever to a one-year contract. Nick Wittgren is also a six-year MLB veteran. From 2016 to 2018 he pitched for the Miami Marlins and he spent 2019-2021 with the Cleveland Guardians (formerly Indians). The 30-year-old’s record over the six seasons was 18-15 with an ERA of 3.75.  He made one start with Cleveland in 2021 but is primarily a reliever.

Nick Wittgren

Wittgren ranks sixth best in MLB in allowing inherited runners to score and ranks 20th in K/BB ratio (3.49) in a class of pitchers with 250 appearances. He set career highs in 2021 in strikeouts, innings, and appearances.

The Cardinals had emphasized prior to the lockout their intention of focusing on the bullpen during the Hot Stove season. These two relievers join a bullpen that consists of Giovanny Gallegos, Alex Reyes, Ryan Helsley, and Genesis Cabrera among other potential relievers.

More news on both signings at The Cardinal Nation

Cardinals Sign Reliever Nick Wittgren

Cardinals Make Drew VerHagen First Post-Lockout Signing

Revised spring training schedule announced

Following the end of the lockout, MLB announced the spring training schedules for both the Grapefruit League and the Cactus League had been revised. Spring training games will officially begin on Thursday, March 17.

The number of games played varies based on location. The Cactus League will play a minimum of 17 or 18 games. The Grapefruit League will play either 15 or 16 games. In Florida, the games will be regionalized, with West Coast teams playing only each other and East Coast teams playing each other. For the Cardinals this means 15 games with the Marlins, Mets, Astros, and Nationals. The Cardinals’ first game will be Friday, March 18 against the Astros at Roger Dean Stadium.

Players began reporting to Jupiter on Friday, March 11. The official report day is Sunday, March 13. Workouts are set to begin on Monday, March 14.

The Cardinals revised spring training schedule can be found here.

(The reworked regular season schedule is still under development.)

Albert Pujols (USA TODAY Sports Images)

Trade and Acquisition Rumors

Derrick Goold of the Post-Dispatch reports that the Cardinals have considered a reunion with franchise icon Albert Pujols as a potential designated hitter and pinch hitter.  Pujols has relatively good numbers against left handed pitching and could offer some power potential as a part time DH and pinch hitter against lefties. On the other hand, Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr, in a statement to reporters, cast some doubt on the idea, telling the media “we’ve got most of our club pretty well set”.

Transactions

  • 3/11 The Cardinals signed free agent RHP Drew VerHagen
  • 3/13 The Cardinals signed free agent RHP Nick Wittgren

Injury Report

There are no new injuries to report.

Looking Ahead

The lockout is finally over, and baseball has returned. On Thursday, March 10, an agreement was reached between MLB and the MLPA for a five year collective bargaining agreement. The union voted to accept MLB’s proposal by a vote of 26-12.

The agreement provides for a full 162-game season with Opening Day on April 7. A shortened spring training has already begun in both the Grapefruit and Cactus Leagues.

Spring training games are set to begin this week. The Cardinals first game will be on March 18. The Cardinals will play 15 games against only their East Coast neighbors the Marlins, Mets, Astros, and Nationals. The Cardinals begin the regular season at home on April 7 against the Pirates. The complete schedule can be found here.

The end of the lockout means the Hot Stove is back. Also put back on the schedule is the day for submitting salary figures for arbitration purposes. That new date is March 22. Arbitration hearings will be conducted during the season. The Cardinals have seven arbitration eligible players. Four of the seven are in their second year of arbitration: Jack Flaherty, Harrison Bader, Alex Reyes and Jordan Hicks. The remaining three, Tyler O’Neill, Giovanny Gallegos, and Dakota Hudson, are first year arbitration eligible.

The major league phase of the Rule 5 draft has been cancelled and will return in December 2022.

Blast from the Past

In the fourth installment covering the top teams in Cardinals franchise history, we take a look at a third World War II era team. This week, we covers the 1943 St. Louis Cardinals – the 62nd team in Cardinals history in its 52nd season in the National League.

The 1943 Cardinals were managed by Billy Southworth and played their home games in Sportman’s Park III.  The team finished in first place in the National League with a record of 105-49-3.

The starting position players for the 1943 team were substantially similar to the 1944 team profiled last week. Harry Walker did not leave for military service until 1944, so he remained on the team as an outfielder. Lou Klein played 2B in 1943 and left for military service in 1944.

Mort Cooper (Getty Images)

Mort Cooper and Max Lanier were two of the starting pitchers. The remaining three starting pitchers on the 1943 team on opening day were Harry Gumbert, Howie Pollet, and Ernie White. Gumbert was traded to Cincinnati on June 15, 1944. Pollet and White left for military service in 1944. Harry Breechen and Red Munger, who were starting pitchers in 1944, were relievers in 1943.

The top offensive performer was Stan Musial, who hit .357/.425/.562 with 13 home runs and 81 RBI. Musial led MLB in hits that season with 220. He also topped MLB in doubles (48) and triples (20). Musial was selected as the NL MVP for 1943, a title he won two more times in his Hall of Fame career.

The top starting pitcher was Cooper, who posted a record of 21-8 with an ERA of 2.30.  His 21 wins led MLB and his ERA topped the National Leage that season. Lanier was 15-7 in 25 starts with an ERA of 1.90.  His ERA led the NL that season.

Stan Musial

The 1943 team finished 14.5 games ahead of second place Pittsburgh. The Cardinals spent 108 days of the season in first place. Their biggest lead was 19 games on Sept 22.

The longest winning streak was 12 games from July 19 to July 27. The longest losing streak was four games from July 15 to July 17.

The most runs allowed by the 1943 team was 15 on July 5 in a 15-2 loss to the Phillies. The most runs scored was 14 twice, in a July 21 14-6 win over the New York Giants in the second game of a doubleheader, and a 14-5 win over the Boston Braves on August 23.

The Cardinals won the NL pennant and met the New York Yankees in the World Series. Despite their stellar record, the Cardinals fell to the Yankees in five games. It was the only World War II era Cardinals team to lose the World Series. The 98-win 1946 team won the World Series over the Boston Red Sox.

1943’s Game 1 was played at Yankee Stadium on October 5. The Yankees won 4-2. St. Louis starter Lanier gave up four runs in seven innings pitched. The only St. Louis run scored in the second inning on an RBI double by Marty Marion.

The Cardinals prevailed in Game 2 at Yankee Stadium by the score of 4-3. Starting pitcher Cooper pitched all nine innings, giving up one run in the fourth and two runs in the ninth inning. St. Louis’ first run came in the third inning on a solo home run by Marion. In the fourth, Musial singled and Whitey Kurowski drove him in on a single to center field. Ray Sanders added a two-run home run in the same inning.

Danny Litwhiler

Game 3 in Yankee Stadium was a 6-2 loss for the Cardinals. Al Brazle started for St. Louis and allowed six runs in 7 1/3 innings. A two-run single by Danny Litwhiler in the fourth inning were the only two runs for the team.

The Yankees defeated the Cardinals 2-1 in Game 4 in Sportsman’s Park. The Cardinals sole run came home in the seventh on a fielding error. Lanier started and gave up one run in seven innings. Harry Breechen relieved and surrendered the winning run to absorb the loss.

Game 5 in Sportsman’s Park finished the series win for the Yankees. The Redbirds were shut out, 2-0. Cooper was the losing pitcher after yielding the two runs in seven innings. Lanier and Murry Dickson relieved. Musial went 0-for-3 but Kurowski was 2-for-4, both singles.

Next week we will fast forward four decades to another World Series losing Cardinals team.


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International Presence Among the Cardinals Top 50 Prospects


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The Cardinal Nation 2022 Prospect Guide is back for its fifth year. It includes 276 pages of in-depth commentary about the very best St. Louis Cardinals minor leaguers, including dozens of color photos. Order your PDF or printed book copy today!

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