Initially this week’s plan was to get my first Draft post up and then wonder how long the two Springfield sluggers would still be down the highway for a road trip. One bad series in New York later was all it took and quickly forgotten by one notification in my inbox. The Cardinals announced just after the walk-off loss to the Mets that not only would Nolan Gorman be joining the team in Pittsburgh but he is bringing help.
What could possibly be better than learning you are finally getting your dream fulfilled and making it to the Majors? How about taking your best friend along for the journey! Matthew Liberatore will start Saturday against the Pirates with St. Louis finally admitting that the big league squad needed help. They might not be the only two debuts fans get to witness over the weekend, however, since Ivan Herrera also will on hand in case Andrew Knizner can’t go.
It should come as no surprise but outside of the Draft and maybe the Playoffs, today’s moves change everything in this very small slice of the internet. Gorman had to watch as others were called up and performed well and must have been wondering what more he needed to do while crushing just about everyone while in Memphis.
Liberatore changed the narrative in a huge way this year, his second in AAA and looking more like an ace with every start. He will get at least one turn in the rotation and then could move to the bullpen once Jack Flaherty is healthy. It also wouldn’t be a shock to see another trip down to stay on a normal schedule to keep his innings up as well. His time at the top of the Cards staff is fast approaching so enjoy Saturday but realize he is only 22.
Herrera is actually the youngest of the trio and might get to celebrate his birthday in St. Louis. The long-time heir apparent at catcher currently sports a .400 batting mark this month as well as three multi-hit games for good measure. His stay with the Birds on the Bat is more about the health of the two backstops ahead of him right now although the future couldn’t be brighter.
It seems like just a matter of time now, but I wouldn’t be doing the front office justice without mentioning the youngest of the future starters. Jordan Walker turns 20 over the weekend, and the aggressive assignment to Springfield has paid off in a glorious way. Double digit stolen bases and extra base hits only tell part of the story for Walker who should find himself at the top of the lineup for Memphis this summer.
When you look at how disappointing last year was overall for the entire farm system, the last month was eye-opening to say the least. Peoria has a number of big arms performing well and most likely the shortstop of the future. More teenagers are chomping at the bit in Florida, with more debuts seemingly coming every day now. If you haven’t been paying attention before now, trust me when I say the future hasn’t been this good in a very long time.
No matter what happens tomorrow on Apple+ (no blackout), the next wave of St. Louis stars begins with Gorman and don’t blink because he very well may be aiming for the river! It seemingly took much longer than anyone wanted but the ability to share this experience with the guy that has been by your side forever is priceless. I get goosebumps just thinking about how proud both of those families are right now and for years to come. Enjoy it Cardinal faithful as the future is now!