One of our regular offseason traditions is the Exit Interview, where we look back at each player that got into a game for the St. Louis Cardinals in the past season. This is the 11th season we’ve done this and it’s a good way to get a view of the whole year, not just a short stretch of games. It’s sort of like a performance review before the players went off to their offseason work, spending a little time with Oli Marmol and going over what went right, what went wrong. Stats and grades are only for a player’s time in St. Louis, though splits numbers may include other teams. As always, my sincere thanks to the legend of cardinalsgifs for providing the header image!
Player: Andre Pallante
Season stats: 6-5, 1 SVO, 3.17 ERA, 47 G, 10 GS, 108 IP, 113 H, 9 HR, 40 BB, 73 K, 23 IR, 9 IRS, 3.98 FIP, 1.417 WHIP, 6.1 K/9, 1.5 bWAR, 0.6 fWAR
Statcast: .302 xwOBA, 3.2 barrel %, 89.4 exit velocity, 42.0 hard hit %, 16.0 K %, 8.8 BB %
Best Statcast category: Barrel % (97th percentile)
Worst Statcast category: Chase Rate (1st percentile)
Hero/Goat: Hero 5, Goat 4
Positives: Made the club with a strong spring training and was on the roster the entire year….made his major league debut April 10 allowing a run in an inning to the Pirates….went eight-plus scoreless innings against the Nationals at the end of July….also had a scoreless start against the Reds in June, getting an out into the sixth before being pulled….lefties had a .619 OPS against him….had a 2.79 ERA and a .692 OPS against away from Busch….had a 2.84 ERA and allowed just two home runs in the second half….had an ERA under two in April, May, and August….had a 1.26 ERA in games he won….had as many wins (3) as a reliever as he did a starter and had a 2.35 ERA coming out of the pen….third place hitters mustered a .487 OPS against him….had a .698 OPS against with two outs in an inning….allowed only one earned run from the eighth inning on….batters had a .456 OPS after pitch 75….had a 2.25 ERA in eight innings against the Brewers….batters hit .195 against his slider.
Negatives: Got touched for seven runs in a start against the Braves in July….had an ERA over 5 in July and September, though the latter was only in 10.2 innings….had a 7.50 ERA in games he lost….innings were about evenly split but struck out more batters as a starter than as a reliever….had a 6.00 ERA with less than two runs of support….second place hitters had a .986 OPS against him….gave up two homers to eight place hitters….batters hit .353 on the first pitch….the first batter against him had an .893 OPS….walked more (16) than he struck out (12) with runners in scoring position….five of his homers allowed came in a tie game and batters had a .909 OPS against him in such situations….had a 10.80 ERA in the first inning….batters had a .954 OPS the first time they faced him as the game’s starting pitcher….had a 6.10 ERA on one days’ rest as a reliever….came into a 2-1 game with the bases loaded and one out in Game 1 of the playoffs and proceeded to let two inherited runners score and two more of his own, putting the game out of reach.
Overview: While Pallante had his name bandied about in prospect watching circles, it was still a bit of a surprise to see him come to spring training and do enough to warrant going north with the club. Usually this works much the way it did for Aaron Brooks, where a prospect (or non-roster invitee) isn’t really ready for the competition and winds up getting sent down to the minors for a while. Pallante held his ground, though, giving up only one run in his first month in the bigs and making a strong impression on the front office. A starter coming up through the ranks, he got a chance to be the piece the club needed to patch up the rotation and while he wasn’t able to keep that spot, he didn’t do much to embarrass himself in it either. While the monthly ERA looks like he struggled down the stretch, that’s skewed by allowing four runs to Washington and getting just one out early in the month. After that, it was a 2.89 ERA and there was no real doubt he’d make the postseason roster, even though those results weren’t really what he was hoping for.
Outlook: The Cardinals have said they are looking for swing-and-miss stuff, which puts Pallante in a bind since he doesn’t really have that in his arsenal. Assuming the club doesn’t add a couple of power arms, though, Pallante probably winds up in the Opening Day bullpen once again, with the possibility of some starts along the way when a sixth man is needed or if someone goes down with an injury.