After every season (dating back to 2012), we’ve spent time looking at every player that got into a game for the St. Louis Cardinals that season. They might have gotten a couple of innings, they might have played every day, but if they played, they get a post. Usually, I like to term this like the players are packing up their locker and then seeing Mike Shildt before they head off for the winter. This year, of course, was anything but typical. So we’ll look at every player, we’ll take in some of their stats, but we won’t be giving out grades this season or delving too much into the positive/negative. There are just too many variables in the Year of COVID for that to be reasonable. As he has for the past few years, cardinalsgifs has lent his enormous talents to our header image and we thank him for it!
Player: Max Schrock
Season stats: 11 games, 17 PA, 1 R, 3 H, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 6 K, .176/.176/.353, 40 OPS+, 0.0 bWAR
Postseason stats: DNP
Statcast: .185 xwOBA, 9.1% barrel %, 81.4 exit velocity, 18.2% hard hit %
Best Statcast category: Did not qualify
Worst Statcast category: Did not qualify
On COVID IL: No
Overview: Wags would like to say that the best value the Cardinals got out of the Stephen Piscotty deal was the scoreless inning Schrock pitched against the Indians. Of course, Yairo Munoz did more than that, though his departure method didn’t help his standing much. (Can you believe that was actually THIS YEAR? That feels like well more than nine months ago.) Schrock was often looked at as the focus of the return of that deal, though, given his good defense and his extreme contact ability. It never really panned out, though. Schrock was left exposed in the Rule 5 draft at least once, maybe twice, and while he did well enough at Memphis, it wasn’t enough to get him a look on a team that had Tommy Edman and Kolten Wong.
Enter a global pandemic. Suddenly it was all hands on deck and Schrock was one of those hands. He got to play some second, some third, neither very much, and of course had that one magical inning on the mound. He got his first big league hit, hit a home run against the Cubs in his third game, and raised his stock enough to at least be noticed around the league. That home run was his last hit as well, as he finished 0-12 and was sent down to Springfield at the beginning of September, never to return.
Outlook: As I said, he raised his profile and proved, at least to some degree, that he wasn’t overmatched at the big league level. At least that’s what the Cubs must have thought, since they claimed him when the Cards tried to send him through waivers to take him off the 40-man roster. Perhaps he’ll get a little time with the Cubs, though I expect at some point they’ll do the waiver game to get him to AAA. We’ll see if anyone else believes he’s worth gambling on then.