Cards minors spring game reports – March 22

Sunday’s opponents:
New York Mets (Memphis and Springfield at Jupiter with Palm Beach and Quad Cities #1 at Port St. Lucie), Quad Cities #2 vs. WFAST at Jupiter.

Monday’s opponents: Florida Marlins on the other side of the Jupiter complex.

defeated Buffalo, 11-3

Memphis pitchers

Jess Todd started and was the winner, 3 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, gave up three in the first, then settled down

The remaining pitchers combined to shut out the Mets the rest of the way

Charlie Manning, 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K

Matt Scherer, 1 IP, 1 H, 2 K’s

Tyler Norrick, 2 IP, 1 H, 2 K’s

Marco Gonzalez, 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB

Memphis hitters

Allen Craig, 3-for-5, 2B, HR, 4 RBIs

Justin Knoedler, 2-for-4 with 2-run HR

Brian Barton, 2-for-3 with a HR and two walks, and made nice sliding catch in CF

Amaury Marti, 2-for-4 with a double, 2 RBIs

Casey Rowlett two hits and a walk

Shane Robinson, 1-for-4 with a run scored (before heading over to ML game)

Nick Stavinoha and Mark Hamilton singled and walked

defeated Binghamton, 9-5

Springfield pitchers

Brad Furnish was winning pitcher, 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K’s

Kyle Mura two perfect innings

Ken Maiques allowed three runs in his inning of work

Elvis Hernandez allowed two runs and three hits in 1/3 of an inning

Jon Mikrut and Sam Freeman both allowed a hit and struck out a batter in an inning of work

Springfield hitters

Brett Wallace was 3-for-5 with a double and 2 RBIs

Daryl Jones, 2-for-5 with a double three runs scored and three RBIs

Jim Rapoport tripled

Mike Folli was 3-for-4 with a double

Paul Vasquez had an RBI double

Palm Beach defeated St. Lucie, 6-0

Palm Beach pitchers

David Kopp pitched two hitless innings, 1 BB, 2 K’s

Brian Broderick, 2 IP, 2 H, 2 K’s

J.D. Stambaugh pitched two perfect innings and was the winner

Davis Bilardello 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB

Matt Spade, 1 IP, 0 H, 1 BB

Eduardo Sanchez, 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K

Palm Beach hitters

Curt Smith, 2-for-3, double, 2 runs scored and an RBI

Aaron Luna, 2-for-3 with an RBI

Jon Edwards, Tommy Pham and Charlie Cutler all singled

Quad Cities #1 tied with Savannah, 5-5

QC #1 pitchers

Took 5-0 lead into bottom of 8th

Deryk Hooker two perfect innings, 2 K’s

Ramon Delgado, 2 IP, 4 H, 0 runs

Zach Pitts, 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB

Gary Daley, 1 IP, 1 H in a scoreless inning

Miguel Tapia allowed two earned runs in his inning on two hits and a walk

Matt Frevert worked 0.2 IP, giving up three earned runs on two hits a walk

QC #1 hitters

Beau Riportella hit a solo HR and drew a walk

Alex Castellanos, Domnit Bolivar and Ryde Rodriguez all had two hits

D’Marcus Ingram and Travis Mitchell both singled

Quad Cities #2 lost to WFAST, 11-3

QC #2 pitchers

Randy Santos took the loss, 1.1 IP, 1 hit, 4 walks and 4 ER

Kevin Siegrist 1.2 IP, 2 H, one unearned run, two K’s

Miguel Flores allowed three hits and a walk while allowing a run in one inning

Reynier Gonzalez 2 IP, 4 H, 2 R,1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K’s

Daniel Richardson allowed three unearned runs in one inning

Jason Buursma, 1 IP,  1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K’s

QC #2 hitters

Paul Cruz 2-for-4

Edgar Lara long HR to CF

Jairo Martinez and Kevin Moscatel had the only other hits for QC#2

These reports are provided through the courtesy of the St. Louis Cardinals by Director of Minor League Operations John Vuch. Following the regular report above, I offer my first-hand observations as well.

Following are the lineups from the three games at Jupiter. If you notice double designated hitters and ten batters in two of the games, your eyes are not deceiving you. This practice is being followed in many of the contests this spring.

Order Memphis Springfield QC #2
1 Robinson cf Rapoport lf Garcia 2b
2 Barton rf Jones cf Cruz dh
3 Stavinoha dh Wallace 3b Lara rf
4 Craig 3b Hill cf Martinez 1b
5 Hamilton 1b Descalso 2b De La Cruz 3b
6 Cazana lf Brown 1b Gomez lf
7 Hoffpauir ss Shorey rf Swinson cf
8 Yarbrough cf Buckman dh Castro c
9 Rowlett 2b Folli ss Vera dh
10 Knoedler dh Castillo ss

Memphis notes:

The wind was blowing out for Memphis and from left to right for Springfield. The Mets touched Jess Todd for a two-run homer in the first, but Allen Craig (playing third base), got a ball up into the jet stream for a three-run jack to right in the home part of the frame (see photo). Later, Justin Knoedler went deep on a line drive to left-center.

Another interesting item is Jarrett Hoffpauir seeing time at shortstop. I asked him when he was assigned to play there. His answer: “Just since I got down here.” I assume he meant minor league camp. I didn’t get the feeling it is permanent, but perhaps more of a versatility move. Hoffpauir told me he had played the position in high school and college so it is not foreign to him. I suspect any questions might be about his arm, but if David Eckstein can do it…

Memphis/St. Louis notes:

The Memphis club was tapped for spare outfielders during the game on Sunday. Starter Shane Robinson was first sent over to Roger Dean. As I was heading back there myself, camp coordinator Mike Shildt was ferrying Nick Stavinoha over there in a golf cart, too.

I saw Colby Rasmus pinch hit in the home seventh with the tying run on base. He took strike three looking, something I’ve seen him do more than expected.

Robinson contributed big time as he reached base on an infield single in the bottom of the ninth of the tie game. He stole second on a very close play and scored the winning run for the Cardinals on Jon Jay’s single down the left field line.

For those who missed it, the Cardinals cut five after Sunday’s game. Pitcher Blake Hawksworth and infielder Tyler Greene were optioned out. Three non-roster invitees were also reassigned to minor league camp. They are pitcher Fernando Salas, catcher Bryan Anderson and outfielder Jon Jay.

Interestingly, the Cardinals’ 40-man roster sits at only 35. Even if Luis Perdomo is returned from San Francisco and if all three of the most seriously-challenging NRIs, Colby Rasmus, Joe Thurston and David Freese make the team, the total would be just 39. Then there is the question of Royce Ring‘s spot, which could knock the total down by another. Until/unless the 40-man is full, Jaime Garcia can’t be placed on the 60-day disabled list once the season begins.

The other NRIs still in camp are pitcher P.J. Walters and catcher Matt Pagnozzi. Both have shown well, though Pagnozzi is known for his glove, not his bat. Either would seem to require an injury to another to make the team.

Springfield notes:

One long-time baseball insider in the house made what I thought was a very interesting comparison between Brett Wallace and Jim Thome. The thought was defensively-driven, but anyone would be delighted if his hitting would grow to be in that class. Another comment was offered that the sturdily-legged Wallace actually “has more bounce in his step” than David Freese.

While Wallace just missed a tough stop to his left defensively, he continues to hit. With Daryl Jones on third, Wallace worked the count to 3-2 until slamming an RBI double over the first baseman and into the right field corner (see photo).

One way for Springfield’s three first basemen to all get into the game is for one (Mark Hamilton) to start for Memphis while Andrew Brown and Brandon Buckman (DH) played for Springfield.

Quad Cities #2 notes:

QC #2 played a club representing a local area free agent camp called WFAST, a traveling team they face each spring. I didn’t see too much of the game, but the second pitcher, Kevin Siegrist, made a nice play. With runners on the corners, he picked off the runner on first. During the rundown, the baserunner on third came home but just slid under the tag.

The photo is of bonus baby third baseman Roberto De La Cruz. A larger batch of photos will be posted later for subscribers, too.

General note:

Cardinals Vice President of Scouting and Player Development Jeff Luhnow introduced me to coach Andy Katzman and his John Burroughs School team from St. Louis as they were touring the minor league fields.

I took this shot of the group outside the batting cages as we were all returning to the major league game.

John Burroughs School - Jeff Luhnow (second from left), coach Andy Katzman (far right)
John Burroughs School - Jeff Luhnow (second from left), coach Andy Katzman (far right)