Cardinals Relievers of the Month Awards - May

Troy Cate - Reliever of the Month

Our second of three sets of monthly awards covering the Cardinals minor league system. First up was starting pitchers with hitters to follow. Today's focus is the bullpen leaders from the month of May.

The Birdhouse Relievers of the Month Awards

May 2006

Today we recognize those relievers leading the entire St. Louis Cardinals minor league system in various categories. As mentioned previously the bullpen gets its own exclusive category, the "Best Firefighters". As with the starters, the "Relief Pitcher of the Month" award will be based on their overall performance in all of the given categories instead of just their earned run average.

We let you know which reliever led each team in any given category plus a top five. To qualify for consideration a reliever must have spent the majority of the month pitching out of the bullpen and appeared in at least five games in a relief role. A list of qualifying and non-qualifying pitchers is included at the end. Those pitchers changing teams during the month are listed by the team with which they ended the month. Their stats are differentiated with the word "combined".

Methodology for Choosing the Overall Winner
The top five in each of the seven categories were ranked numerically one through five with the team leader being noted only if he was not in the top five. For May there were sixteen relievers that either placed in the top five in at least one category or was a team leader in at least one category. However, no reliever placed in the top five in all seven categories. The month's best became clear after that as there was only one pitcher that placed in the top five in six of the seven categories.

Reliever of the Month for May 2006 –
LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals

10 G, 1-0, 0 SV, 2 GF, 11.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 HR, 0 HB, 2 BB, 16 SO, 2.31 ERA 0.51 WHIP, 8:1 K/BB, 12.34 K/9 IP, 1.54 BB/9 IP, .105 BAA, Outs: 25.71% ground, 28.57% fly, 45.71% SO in 35 total outs, 7 Inherited Runners, 0 Inherited Runner Scored, 3 game appearances

Troy Cate was signed to a minor league contract during the 2005-2006 off-season. Although he did spent 56.2 innings in AA during 2004, the majority of his time since his drafting in the sixth round of the 2002 draft by the Mariners has been at A-Advanced. He did not open the season on an active roster and was subsequently placed on the restricted list. On May 8th, he was activated and assigned to Palm Beach where he put up an excellent month. Although Cate is a bit old for league, his two chief competitors both pitched at the same level as did Cate and did not place high enough in fewer categories to balance out the age difference.

Earned Run Average
The Best
RHP Mike Sillman, Palm Beach Cardinals
9 G, 0-0, 2 SV, 1.00 ERA, one run, one earned run in nine innings pitched

Balance of the Top Five
2. RHP Justin Garza, Springfield Cardinals – 1.26 ERA, three runs, two earned runs in fifteen and one- third innings pitched over nine game appearances (Team Leader) (Combined)
3. LHP Danny Borne, Swing of the Quad Cities – 1.35 ERA, three runs, one earned run in six and two- thirds innings pitched over eight game appearances (Team Leader)
4. RHP Josh Kinney, Memphis Redbirds – 1.53 ERA, three runs, three earned runs in seventeen and two-thirds innings pitched over thirteen game appearances (Team Leader)
5. RHP Ashley Hooks, Swing of the Quad Cities – 1.59 ERA, three runs, two earned runs in eleven and one-third innings pitched over six game appearances

WHIP
The Best
LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals
10 G, 0 GS, 1-0, 0 SV, 11.2 IP, 4 H, 2 BB, 0.51 WHIP, 2.31 ERA

Balance of the Top Five
2. RHP Trey Hearne, Swing of the Quad Cities - 0.78 WHIP, eleven hits, one walk in fifteen and one-third innings pitched (Team Leader)
3. RHP John Mikrut, Swing of the Quad Cities – 0.85 WHIP, six hits, five walks in thirteen innings pitched
4. RHP Ashley Hooks, Swing of the Quad Cities – 0.88 WHIP, six hits, four walks in eleven and one-third innings pitched
5. RHP Mike Sillman, Palm Beach Cardinals – 0.89 WHIP, seven hits, one walk in nine innings pitched

Additional Team Leaders
Memphis Redbirds
RHP Josh Kinney – 0.96 WHIP, twelve hits, five walks in seventeen and two-thirds innings pitched

Springfield Cardinals
RHP Mark Worrell – 1.07 WHIP, seven hits, eight walks in fourteen innings pitched

Strike-Outs-to-Walks Ratio
The Best
RHP Trey Hearne, Swing of the Quad Cities
16:1 ratio, sixteen strikeouts to one walk in fifteen and one-third innings pitched

Balance of the Top Five
2. RHP Mike Sillman, Palm Beach Cardinals – 12:1 ratio, twelve strikeouts, one walk in nine innings pitched (Team Leader)
3. RHP Brian Stitt, Swing of the Quad Cities – 9:1 ratio, nine strikeouts, one walk in nine and one-third innings pitched
4. LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals – 8:1 ratio, sixteen strikeouts, two walks in eleven and two-thirds innings pitched
5. RHP Matt Scherer, Palm Beach Cardinals – 7.1:1 ratio, twenty-two strikeouts, three walks in twelve and two-thirds innings pitched

Additional Team Leaders
Memphis Redbirds
RHP Josh Kinney – 3:1, fifteen strikeouts, five walks in seventeen and two-thirds innings pitched

Springfield Cardinals
RHP Mark Worrell – 2.5:1, twenty strikeouts, eight walks in fourteen innings pitched

The Flamethrowers
The Best
RHP Matt Trent, Swing of the Quad Cities
15.7 per nine innings pitched, twenty-five strikeouts in fourteen and one-third innings pitched

Balance of the Top Five
2. RHP Matt Scherer, Palm Beach Cardinals – 15.6 per nine innings pitched, twenty-two strikeouts in twelve and two-thirds innings pitched (Team Leader)
3. RHP Mark Worrell, Springfield Cardinals – 12.9 per nine innings pitched, twenty strikeouts in fourteen innings pitched (Team Leader)
4. LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals – 12.3 per nine innings pitched, sixteen strikeouts in eleven and two-third innings pitched
5. RHP Mike Sillman, Palm Beach Cardinals – 12 per nine innings pitched, twelve strikeouts in nine innings pitched

Memphis Redbirds
RHP Josh Kinney – 7.6 per nine innings pitched, fifteen strikeouts in seventeen and two-thirds innings pitched

Best Control
The Best
RHP Trey Hearne, Swing of the Quad Cities
0.59 per nine innings pitched, one walk in fifteen and one-third innings pitched

Balance of the Top Five
2. RHP Brian Stitt, Swing of the Quad Cities – 0.96 per nine innings pitched, one walk in nine and one-third innings pitched
3. RHP Mike Sillman, Palm Beach Cardinals – 1.00 per nine innings pitched, one walk in nine innings pitched (Team Leader)
4. LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals – 1.54 per nine innings pitched, two walks in eleven and two-third innings pitched
5. RHP Matt Scherer, Palm Beach Cardinals – 2.13 per nine innings pitched, three walks in twelve and two-thirds innings pitched

Additional Team Leader
Memphis Redbirds
RHP Josh Kinney – 2.55 per nine innings pitched, five walks in seventeen and two-thirds innings pitched

Springfield Cardinals
RHP Chris Russ – 2.77 per nine innings pitched, four walks in thirteen innings pitched

Lowest Batting Average Against
The Best
LHP Danny Borne, Swing of the Quad Cities
Opponents hit just .095 against him, twenty-eight batters faced Borne and only two got hits along with one sacrifice bunt and one sacrifice fly in six and two-thirds innings over eight game appearances

Balance of the Top Six
2. LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals – held opponents to a .105 batting average, forty batters faced with four getting hits in eleven and two-thirds innings pitched over ten game appearances (Team Leader)
3. RHP Andy Cavazos – held opponents to a .128 batting average, fifty-seven batters faced with six getting hits along with two sacrifice bunts in fourteen and one-third innings pitched over eleven game appearances (Team Leader)
4. RHP Jon Mikrut, Swing of the Quad Cities – held opponents to a .133 batting average, fifty-one batters faced with six getting hits in thirteen innings pitched over thirteen game appearances
5.- tie RHP Mark Worrell, Springfield Cardinals – held opponents to a .146 batting average, fifty-seven batters faced with seven getting hits in fourteen innings pitched over thirteen game appearances
5.- tie RHP Ashley Hooks, Swing of the Quad Cities – held opponents to a .146 batting average, forty- six batters faced with six getting hits along with one sacrifice fly in eleven and one-third innings pitched over sixteen game appearances

Best Firefighters
The Best
RHP Cory Doyne, Springfield Cardinals
Cali inherited eight baserunners in four game appearances but none scored off him during May. That includes one bases-loaded situation and gives him a 100% success rate

Balance of the Top Five
2. LHP Troy Cate, Palm Beach Cardinals – seven inherited runners in three game appearances with none scoring for a 100% success rate
3. RHP Rich Scalamandre, Springfield Cardinals - nine inherited runners in four game appearances including two bases-loaded situations, one of which allowed the only run scored against him for a 88.89% success rate
4. RHP Matt Scherer, Palm Beach Cardinals - eight inherited runners in four game appearances including one bases-loaded situation and only one scored for a 87.50% success rate

Comment
This category highlights those relievers doing the best job at not allowing inherited runners to score. There were six pitchers that inherited four or fewer runners and did not allow any to score. However, all inherited runners happened in one-to-two appearances. This category wants to reward those relievers that repeatedly inherited runners but minimized the damage. Therefore, the number of game appearances in which runners were inherited was taken into account as well. The four relievers listed above separated themselves from the rest. No other reliever was as successful hence a top five was not given.

Qualifiers: RHP Tyler Adamczyk, RHP Alan Benes, LHP Danny Borne, RHP Jason Cairns, LHP Carmen Cali, LHP Troy Cate, RHP Andy Cavazos, RHP Dennis Dove, RHP Cory Doyne, RHP Jose Garcia, RHP Justin Garza, RHP Trey Hearne, RHP Ashley Hooks, RHP Josh Kinney, RHP Jon Mikrut, LHP Kevin Ool, LHP Matt Perisho, RHP John Riedling, RHP Chris Russ, RHP Rich Scalamandre, RHP Matt Scherer, RHP Mike Sillman, RHP Brian Stitt, RHP Matt Trent, RHP Scott Vander Weg, RHP Mark Worrell, LHP Zack Zuercher

Non-Qualifiers: RHP Brian Falkenborg

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