This is my first weekly “Prospect Report” in which I plan on reporting the latest on injuries, transactions, and anything else that might be interesting in the Cardinals’ minor league system.
Rhett Parrott’s arm is feeling much stronger according to his mother, Sherry. She said that they originally believed he would be out until June, but that he is hoping it won’t be that long. He began to feel pain in his surgically repaired shoulder shortly after he reported to spring training.
After starting out in Memphis last season, Parrott was placed on the disabled list in May and had season ending surgery on July 30 to clean up his labrum and rotator cuff. The 25-year-old right-hander was recently rated as the Cardinals’ 23rd best prospect by Baseball America after being rated as 8th best just a year earlier.
Left-hander Tyler Johnson, who was returned to the Cardinals on March 22 after the Oakland A’s selected him in the Rule-5 Draft, has been almost perfect for Triple-A Memphis, allowing only one hit while striking out 5 in 3.1 innings spanning 5 appearances.
Outfielder Dee Haynes was activated from the disabled list for Memphis today and the Cardinals are expected to activate outfielder Raul Gonzalez later this week. The Cardinals also acquired pitcher Shawn Sedlacek from Colorado today. The 27-year-old went 10-7 with a 4.32 ERA for the Cubs Triple-A affiliate last season. Last week the Cardinals activated pitcher Jeremey Cummings to replace Carmen Cali when he was called up to St. Louis. Pitcher Mark Nussbeck was released the day before the season began to make room for Kevin Jarvis who decided to accept an assignment to the minor leagues.
The Cardinals lost catching prospect Gabe Johnson to a knee injury on Sunday afternoon. He ripped off his mask and raced towards the opposing team’s dugout in search of a foul pop-up and slid into the concrete wall of the dugout, injuring his right knee. It is currently unknown as to how long he will be out, but the Cardinals have sent catcher Brad Cresse from Memphis to replace him.
A lot of people were surprised to see when the Cardinals released right-handed pitcher Brandon DeJaynes at the beginning of spring training. They wondered why the Cardinals would release someone that was only 24 and had struck out 106 batters in 71 innings the previous season, but I have received a report from someone who was down in Jupiter during spring training saying that the word from there was that DeJaynes tore his labrum playing ping-pong. He also said that DeJaynes was “in trouble quite a few times with the law and his coaches over the last two seasons at Johnson City and especially in Peoria.”
Palm Beach outfielder Brian Martin was placed on the disabled list on Saturday after he injured his left wrist while attempting to make a diving catch on Friday night. Martin, 24, was signed by the Cardinals as a minor league free agent on December 14. He was hitting .400 in 35 at bats with 1 home run and 5 RBI. To replace him on the roster the Cardinals re-signed 25-year-old outfielder Anthony Monegan who played for the Peoria Chiefs last season and was named to the Midwest League All-Star game after batting .297 and scoring 97 runs as the Chiefs leadoff hitter.
The transaction wire has been fairly busy for the Swing of Quad Cities lately. On Friday the Cardinals activated infielder/outfielder Joe Mather from the disabled list, and signed independent leaguer Derry Hammond. To make room for the two players, outfielder Andy Brown was released, and outfielder Sam Herbert was transferred to short-season New Jersey. Hammond got off to a quick start for the Swing, going 3-5 with 2 home runs in his first game. On Sunday, the Cardinals announced that Jose Delgado had been transferred from Quad Cities to extended spring training and second baseman Chris Patrick had been called up from there to replace him. Patrick, 23, was named to the New York-Penn League all-star team last season after he hit .320 with 13 doubles for New Jersey.
Right-hander Justin Garza was recently placed on the disabled list for Palm Beach because of a shoulder strain and inflammation. He has been told by a doctor that he can’t throw for three weeks. The 24-year-old was recently rated as having the best slider in the organization by Baseball America.
The Cardinals decided to keep right-hander Donnie Smith in extended spring training after his arm started bothering him. Smith, 22, was the Cardinals 4th round draft pick last season out of Old Dominion where he pitched alongside Justin Verlander (the No. 2 overall pick by Detroit last year). Last season at New Jersey he had a 3.88 ERA and a 41/5 K/BB ratio in 46 innings pitched.
The Oakland A’s decided to have former Cardinals prospect Daric Barton start the season exclusively at DH after he encountered elbow troubles during spring training and was unable to throw. According to Baseball America they also had him on a throwing program. Shortly after the A’s acquired Barton in the deal that sent Mark Mulder to the Cardinals they decided to move him from catcher to first base. He was expected to start the season at Double-A but the A’s assigned him to High-A Stockton where he is hitting .297 with a home run and 6 RBI in 10 games. Baseball America rated him as the second best prospect in the A’s system, behind only Nick Swisher, and as the 32nd best prospect in the game.
Another former Cardinal prospect, Tony Granadillo, who was taken in the minor league phase of the Rule-5 draft this winter by Boston is hitting only .226 in 31 at bats for Low-A Greenville. The 20-year-old middle infielder was originally signed by the Cardinals out of Venezuela in 2001. Those who follow the Cardinal’s system closely were disappointed to see him taken after he hit .315/.413/.565 with 10 home runs in 168 at bats last season for Johnson City.
According to Baseball America, the Cardinals have released RHPs Greg Bauer, Dan Baysinger, Chris Bova, Wilson Ciprian, Ron Evans, Luis Gomez, Nathan Kopszywa, James Mondesir, Gregg Pleeter, Jared Smith, James Tricoglou, Austin Tubb and Mike Wodnicki, LHPs Josh Brey, Brantley Jordan, Hector Mercado, Chad Petty, Joey Siak, Pete Soteropoulos and Colin Young, Cs Adam Burton, Nick Hopkins, Cody Palmer and Spencer Wyman, SSs Tim Cantu and Omar Pena, OFs Chad Ehrnsberger, Casey Grimm, Jose Virgil and Levi Webber, 3B Das Jesson, 1B John Lindsey, and 2Bs Michael Dzurilla, Wilton Guerrero, Brian Harris and Jorge Sequea.
A 72-year-old baseball fan is suing after he was blinded in one eye by a foul ball during a minor-league game last season.
Ronald Young, of Dunedin, Florida, was hit behind the dugout near first base as he made his way down a walkway in the second inning of a game between the Tampa Yankees and Palm Beach Cardinals in Dunedin on May 25.
The game was being played in Dunedin’s Knology Park, home of the Toronto Blue Jays High-A affiliate, due to the Florida State High School Baseball Championships being played at Legends Field in Tampa.
Young was flown to a St. Petersburg hospital and underwent surgery. Yankees pitcher, and former Cardinal’s prospect, Ben Julianel hit the foul ball.
The suit was filed against the Yankees, Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays, Dunedin, and the Florida State League according to the Associated Press.
You can write to Jason Scott at email@example.com