After a much-needed day of rest, the sprint towards Labor Day begins with some caution. I enjoy all aspects of baseball, but the best part is not having to dwell on a tough loss very long. The fellow crew here at CC will share most of the gory details, so I will only add that it is a very good thing that the Marlins will become the sacrificial lamb this weekend. I have a strong suspicion that an angry St. Louis club will take the field at Busch this evening.
The holiday also brought a mixed bag of performances throughout the system, including the debut for two 2013 draft picks. Marco Gonzales and Ian McKinney are next on the clock with a good bet that they will be appearing on the SS ledger very soon. Rob Kaminsky and Mike Mayers both had scoreless innings for the GCL Cardinals yesterday, combining for four strikeouts. Kaminsky overcame his professional butterflies in a big way, as he allowed singles to the first two batters before striking out the next three.
I will be looking at each Cardinal affiliate next week in hopes of identifying the players who should be getting a bump up in competition, starting with the Springfield club on Monday.
Wednesday, July 3rd
White smoke — Brock Peterson, Memphis, 3-5, 2B, Game-Winning single, 2 RBI
Gray smoke — Pitching staff, Palm Beach, 19 H, 15 R, 12 BB, Charlotte was 10-17 RISP
Black smoke — Jacoby Almaraz, GCL Cards, 0-6, 2 SO, 5 LOB, 1-23 and 11 SO this season
Thursday, July 4th
White smoke — Xavier Scruggs, Springfield, Walk-off Home Run, 21st on the season
Gray smoke — Pitching staff, Johnson City, 19 H, 20 R, 5 BB, Kingsport was 10-23 RISP
Black smoke — Scott McGregor, Memphis, 4 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 2 HR, BB, WP, 1.72 WHIP in AAA
Memphis looks to provide some offense for Carlos Martinez tonight, as the St. Louis Minor League Pitcher of the Month attempts to finalize his spot as first man up (# 6 starter). Fellow bonus baby Alexander Reyes, the No. 8 Seedling, was undone by walks in his start for Johnson City and gave up a three-run homer in addition to seven strikeouts in four innings. It was all downhill from there as Kingsport pounded out ten extra base hits and scored on every reliever the Cardinals tossed out.
Palm Beach had a similar outing Wednesday, but the offense joined in the futility. Charlotte held the Cardinals to one hit, a 2nd inning single, and battered four different hurlers with crooked numbers. Among the wounded was No. 5 Seedling Jordan Swagerty, who was rudely welcomed back to the Florida State League. He sports an ERA of 108.00 after his abbreviated outing and looks to get thru at least one inning his next appearance. Swagerty and Jay Voss were charged with four runs apiece in a forgetful night for everyone.
It may be time to swap some of the Peoria staff with those underachieving at Palm Beach in hopes of improving confidence and results. Stop me if you have heard this before…Victor Marte gave up a run for the seventh consecutive time and surely has to be on his way off the Memphis roster. It is puzzling at best to see his name still on the St. Louis 40-man roster, something I hope changes by my next post Monday. Enjoy your weekend and please send me your top destination for where the Marte Party should land next.