photo: Tyler O’Neill (Scott Rovak/USA TODAY Sports)
The St. Louis Cardinals picked up a win and a tie in their first two spring training games, as the pitching appears to be ahead of the offense. However, the depth will be tested, as starter Miles Mikolas will be out for some time. Our history feature highlights Hall of Famer Ducky Medwick.
Spring training game recaps
In the first game of the 2020 Grapefruit League schedule, the St. Louis Cardinals blanked the New York Mets 2-0 at Roger Dean Stadium. A solo home run by Tyler O’Neill in the second inning got the Cardinals on the board. The score remained 1-0 until the eighth inning when Andrew Knizner tripled to right field and Dylan Carlson followed with an RBI single to center to make it 2-0. Carlson went 2-for-2 as did Matt Carpenter.
On the bump to begin the game was Jack Flaherty. Flaherty pitched two scoreless innings, giving up two hits and fanning three. Dakota Hudson, Kwang-Hyun Kim, Brett Cecil, Evan Kruczynski, Rob Kaminsky, and Genesis Cabrera followed. Hudson tossed two scoreless innings, and each of the others added a scoreless inning each in a strong staff showing.
Lane Thomas was caught stealing.
The Cardinals and the Mets played again on Sunday, this time at the home of the Mets in Port St. Lucie. The game ended in a tie in regulation.
Adam Wainwright made his first Grapefruit League start and scuffled a bit. The veteran right hander pitched 1 2/3 innings and gave up one run on two hits. The Mets tally came on a solo home run by Jake Marisnick. Following Wainwright on the bump was Angel Rondon, Carlos Martinez, Ramon Santos, Daniel Ponce de Leon, Jesus Cruz, and Jake Woodford. Martinez struggled in his spring debut, giving up two runs on four hits.
On the offensive side, leadoff hitter Harrison Bader took the second pitch he saw from Steven Matz deep over the left field wall for a solo home run to give the Redbirds a 1-0 lead. Bader went 2-for-3 with a third inning leadoff double to go with the long ball. The Mets took a 3-1 lead into the eighth inning, but it ended there when Edmundo Sosa thumped a line-drive two-run home run to left to tie the game at 3-3. The game came to a close in regulation in the ninth still knotted up 3-3.
New outfielder Austin Dean was caught stealing in his first spring attempt.
Trade and Acquisition Rumors
There are no trade or acquisition rumors to report.
There are no transactions to report.
- RHP Miles Mikolas (right flexor tendon) had a second platelet rich plasma (PRP) injection in his right arm to battle a recurrence of inflammation in his right flexor tendon. The latest update is that Mikolas will not be ready to start the season and will likely be out until at least mid-April. Kim is his likely replacement in the rotation.
- 1B Paul Goldschmidt (right elbow soreness) is being limited to appearances as a designated hitter in spring games in early action. The injury is not deemed serious, but the team is being cautious and limiting his throwing for the first few games.
The Cardinals return to Jupiter on Monday for a game against the Marlins. St. Louis will be the visiting team. The Nationals visit Jupiter on Tuesday, then the Cardinals as the home team play a Marlins split squad on Wednesday.
The Cardinals travel to the Gulf Coast to play the Braves in North Port on Thursday. To finish the week, the team returns to the Atlantic Coast to play the Mets again in Port St. Lucie, followed by a contest against the Nationals in Jupiter, and a Sunday game in Palm Beach against the Astros.
The full spring training game broadcast schedule can be found at TCN here.
Blast from the Past
In the second installment of the series on former Cardinals nicknames, this week’s Blast from the Past looks at the career of a member of the Cardinals infamous “Gashouse Gang’’ of the 1930s.
The son of Hungarian immigrants, Joe Medwick was born on November 4, 1911 in Carteret, New Jersey. Medwick excelled in several sports as a youth, and almost played football at Notre Dame for coach Knute Rockne. Medwick chose, however, to play baseball rather than attend college. After spending a couple of years in the minor leagues with the Houston Buffaloes, Medwick was called up by the Cardinals in September of 1932.
Medwick excelled in 11 seasons with St. Louis – for nine years to start his career, and two more at the end. In those 11 years, Medwick put up a slash line of .335/.372/.545, with 152 home runs and 923 RBI. He led the league in RBI for three straight years in 1936, 1937 and 1938. He won the “Triple Crown” in 1937, leading the league in batting average, home runs, and RBI. He was the National League MVP in 1937 and was a seven time All-Star with St. Louis.
The Cardinals traded Medwick to the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1940. He played with the New York Giants, the Boston Braves, and the Dodgers for a second time before returning to the Cardinals in 1947. Medwick ended his MLB career in St. Louis in 1948.
Medwick was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1968. He was a hitting coach in the Cardinals’ minor league system and was acting in that role when he passed away from a heart attack in St. Petersburg, Florida in 1975. Medwick is buried in St. Louis.
Medwick got his nickname “Ducky” while he was playing with the Houston Buffaloes. His teammates in Houston noticed he waddled like a duck when he walked, and they started calling him “Ducky”. The nickname stuck. Medwick was known to hate the nickname, but he never shook it, as sportswriters picked up on the name and referred to him as Ducky throughout his career.
Medwick was among the inaugural class inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame in 2014.
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