For the current Pitchers and Players of the Week, selected by each minor league and announced every Monday, the St. Louis Cardinals have four representatives. The recognized players for the period covering August 20-26 are Shelby Miller, Mike O’Neill, Cody Stanley and Boone Whiting.
Miller was named the Pacific Coast League’s Pitcher of the Week for the second time this season. In fact, it was the second time in the last month.
This time around, 21-year-old posted two strong starts August 21 at Iowa and August 26 against Albuquerque. Despite a 1-1 record, Miller had a 2.13 ERA and 0.79 WHIP. The Cardinals top prospect issued only three walks while fanning 19 batters over 12 2/3 innings, leading the league in strikeouts for the week.
Last Monday in Iowa, Miller fanned a season and team-high 12 batters in his seven innings, blanking the Cubs through the first six innings before giving up two runs in the seventh for the hard-luck loss as Memphis fell to Iowa 2-0. On Sunday against Albuquerque, the Texas native tossed 5 2/3 innings of one-run ball while walking three and striking out seven.
Whiting is looking to end an injury-plagued 2012 on a high note with the Midwest League Pitcher of the Week honors a good step in that direction. In just his third start of the season back with the Quad Cities River Bandits after a rehab stint in the Gulf Coast League, the right-hander excelled.
Whiting went seven scoreless innings against Kane County on Thursday, allowing just two hits and no walks. The just-turned 23-year-old fanned six and did not allow a runner past second base. He was The Cardinal Nation’s 28th-ranked prospect prior to the 2012 season.
O’Neill is the Texas League Player of the Week. The 24-year-old was a Florida State League All-Star and was in line to win that league’s batting title with a .342 mark before his promotion to Double-A Springfield on August 18.
During this period with the S-Cards, the left-handed hitter went 11-for-20 (.550) with four doubles, four RBI, six runs scored, walked six times and stole three bases. O’Neill was the July Player of the Month as named by both The Cardinal Nation and the Cardinals organization.
Stanley, 23, a non-roster invitee to Cardinals major league camp this spring, is rounding back into form after a 50-game drug suspension earlier this season. For Palm Beach during this period, the Florida State League Player of the Week went 5-for-12 (.417). Four of those hits went for extra bases - two doubles and two home runs.
The left-handed hitter plated a whopping 11 runs, including eight in last Wednesday’s double-header alone. Stanley also scored three runs during the period. Coming into the season, Stanley was The Cardinal Nation’s 26th-ranked prospect in the Cardinals’ system.
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