All posts by Frank Ramirez

Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 22

The Memphis Redbirds ended their season at 69-71, falling just short of the playoffs. Jose Martinez had a .636 OBP for the final series, Daniel Ponce de Leon was the Pacific Coast League Player of the Month and Memphis broke several franchise records.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 21

An unlikely late season surge has Memphis (68-68) just a four-game sweep away from being division champs and returning to the playoffs. The 6-1 week was led by Justin Williams, hitting .434 in his last seven games with four home runs. Adolis Garcia crossed the rare 90-RBI threshold.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 20

The Memphis Redbirds (62-67) continued their late season surge, going 6-1 this week and winning of 11 of their last 13. Dylan Carlson, TCN’s No. 1 prospect, has not skipped a beat in Triple-A as he is slashing .529/.579/.941/1.520 in eight games, including seven consecutive multi-hit performances.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – Week 19

The Memphis Redbirds (56-66) lost their first series after winning five-straight, but finished the week strongly, at 5-1. The pitching staff continues to excel and Daniel Ponce de Leon’s 20 strikeouts in his last 14 innings underlined his PCL Pitcher of the Week honors. Dylan Carlson and others comment on his Triple-A debut.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 18

The Memphis Redbirds (51-65) finished 3-3 this past week, dropping their first series after winning five straight. Randy Arozarena has reached base in 35 consecutive starts, with his consistency a big reason why he was the Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month in both June and July, and Yadier Molina’s rehab visit drew rave reviews.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 17

The Memphis Redbirds (48-62) maintained their recent momentum, going 5-1 this week. Organization Player of the Month Randy Arozarena continues to shine, hitting .379 and reaching base safely in 30 straight starts. Marcell Ozuna and Harrison Bader discuss their Triple-A assignments and more.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 16

The Memphis Redbirds (43-61) went a respectable 4-2 this week. Adolis Garcia has been on a hot burst, hitting .392 in his last six games including five home runs and a franchise record-tying eight RBI last Sunday. The outfielder and his manager comment.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 15

The Memphis Redbirds (39-59) had bullpen improvement while going 3-4 in a full week back in action after the All-Star break and remain in last place. Outfielder Johan Mieses is red-hot, slashing .360/.429/.720/1.149 with 15 RBI in 17 games for Memphis in 2019.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 14

In a short week due to the All-Star break, the Memphis Redbirds went 1-3 and remain last in the division. Center fielder Randy Arozarena continues to be hot, with five RBI this week and slashing .380/.452/.550/1.002 with Memphis.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 13

The Memphis Redbirds went 2-5 this week and have the worst record in the PCL at 35-52. Randy Arozarena talks about being named the organization’s Minor League Player of the Month and slashing .400/.458/.588/1.047 in 22 games with the Redbirds. Andrew Knizner reacts to being selected to Wednesday’s Triple-A All- Star Game.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 12

The Memphis Redbirds (33-47) went 4-3 while dealing with another week of roster moves. John Nogowski is currently on a 12-game hitting streak with a line of .306/.414/.458/.872 including 16 RBI in that span. Jake Woodford discusses two big honors received.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 11

The Memphis Redbirds (29-44) are riding a five-game losing streak as Rangel Ravelo joined St. Louis. 22-year-old center fielder Conner Capel is on a six-game hitting streak (.375/.400/.667/1.067) since making his Triple-A debut.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 10

The Memphis Redbirds (28-39) split their week at 3-3 despite playing through many roster changes. Rangel Ravelo is currently slashing .327/.408/.521/.930, which leads the team. Ravelo is currently ranked 14th in the PCL in batting average.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 9

The Memphis Redbirds (25-36) ended a 12-game losing streak, second longest in franchise history, as they picked up their first series win since May 11-14. Tommy Edman is on a five-game hitting streak and leads the team with a .305 batting average.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 8

The Memphis Redbirds (23-32) were winless in eight games this week. The reigning Triple-A National Champions were swept in six by San Antonio, and are riding a nine-game losing skid. Drew Robinson is batting .409 with a .567 OBP in his last eight games.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – 2019 Week 7

The Triple-A Redbirds were swept in a five-game series for the first time since 2006 and fell to one game under .500 (23-24). Despite the team winning only two of seven games this week, Rangel Ravelo extended his hitting streak to 18 games, two shy of Adam Kennedy’s franchise record.

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Memphis Redbirds Notebook – Week 5

Memphis ended its 13-game road trip with a winning record of 8-5 but is at risk of losing the home series to the first-place Iowa Cubs. The Redbirds went 3-4 in the week, as Anthony Shew has made two strong starts since joining.

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“Battle of the Birds” a Major Success

photo: Yadier Molina and Paul DeJong (Memphis Redbirds)

It was an energetic night for baseball and its fans Monday evening in Memphis, Tenn. as The Battle of The Birds exhibition was played for the 10th time. It was the first match-up between the St. Louis Cardinals and their Triple-A affiliate, the Memphis Redbirds, since 2017 when St. Louis prevailed, 9-3. The Cardinal Nation showed their excitement as a sell-out crowd of 10,442 watched a preview of both 2019 teams at festive AutoZone Park.

The proceedings began with autograph signings followed by a ceremony during which the 2018 Triple-A National Champions received their rings.

After the home team seized to an early 1-0 edge in the first inning, the major leaguers took the lead for good via Marcell Ozuna’s three-run home run to left field against Adam Wainwright in the third. That led to 6-3 victory to conclude St. Louis’ spring schedule. St. Louis now leads the all-time series 7-2-1.

It was a homecoming for area resident Stubby Clapp, now first-base coach for the St. Louis after a very successful two-year stint managing the Redbirds. Clapp is fifth on the Redbirds all-time list with 174 wins, and his .619 winning percentage is the best in team history.

Welcomed to an array of applause was Memphis’ new manager Ben Johnson, who is a nearby Germantown native. The former outfielder was drafted by St. Louis out of high school in the fourth round of the 1999 First-Year Player Draft and later reached the majors with the Padres and the Mets.

The Redbirds played full steam ahead right off the bat as Adolis Garcia launched an RBI double off the first pitch he saw from Michael Wacha. Max Schrock scored.

Wainwright was the starting pitcher for the home team and was solid through two innings, yielding just two walks and striking out two. It flipped in the third inning, however, when Andrew Knizner and Paul DeJong walked, and Ozuna’s monster three-run homer on a line-drive to left field gave the Cardinals the lead they would never lose.

Yadier Molina had unfamiliar head-to-head at-bats against Wainwright, since Molina wasn’t catching his pitches, rather he was trying to get a hit against his long-time teammate. The pitcher prevailed, as Molina grounded out in the second, and flied out in the third inning. The pair have been a starting battery for 242 career games, most all-time for St. Louis.

Both had history in the Battle of the Birds matchup with Wainwright starting the April 3, 2004 game for the Redbirds in a 5-1 defeat when he was a 23-year-old. Molina went 1-for-2 (HBP) in a 7-3 win playing for the Redbirds in the April 2, 2004 game.

St. Louis starter Wacha had a strong showing in four innings, allowing two hits, one run and adding five strikeouts, the latter a game-high.

Memphis showed signs of life in the bottom of the seventh after accruing only two hits in the first six innings. It started with Lane Thomas being hit by an Alex Reyes offering. Ramon Urias reached via a fielder’s choice against new pitcher Connor Jones as Thomas scored to make it 5-2. Jones later threw a wild pitch that enabled Brian O’Keefe to dash home from third base.

The game ended with smiles from both teams.

Link to boxscore


What is next

St. Louis looks to build from its strong spring finish as they head to Milwaukee to open the regular season in a Thursday afternoon matchup at 1:10 p.m. (CT). Meanwhile, Memphis has a 10-day wait until its home opener against Omaha. Redbirds manager Johnson is keen to work out the fundamentals with his team, while awaiting the final roster for opening day.

Frank Ramirez will be back each Friday this season with his weekly notebooks from AutoZone Park, covering the 2019 Memphis Redbirds, exclusively for members of The Cardinal Nation.

Stay tuned for the final roster details for Memphis and all four Cardinals full-season minor league affiliates over the next week here at The Cardinal Nation.


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