Dear Mark Worrell,
First let me say congratulations. You have had a very underrated career and also it could be said an overlooked one at that. But, now you have become the seventh member of the St. Louis Cardinals organization to make their major league debut this season.
Next, let me say I am sorry. In The Birdhouse's 40 Days, 40 Nights, 40 Prospects, I was the only staff member that did not rate you. You ranked number 33 overall, but I guess I like many, underrated you as well. But this season, you have gone out and done what you have accomplished throughout your minor league career - get people out.
In 21 appearances in 2008, you have posted a record of 1-1 with a 1.88 ERA over 24 innings of work. To say you have been dominant is an understatement, as you have racked up 38 strikeouts compared to 11 walks. Always thought as a right-handed specialist, right-handed hitters are hitting just .216 against you while lefties are batting only a comparable .233.
When you make your major league debut, you will have appeared in 208 career minor league games spanning 244 innings and posting a 3.02 ERA. With 78 career saves and 285 strikeouts, there is really nothing else to prove at the minor league level.
I am sure that every one of your
family and friends back in your home of
Instead of opting to sign
with the Rays, you instead went to
After leaving Indian
River, next was a stop in 2003 at the
The desert sun must have
not suited you as you transferred closer to home - Florida International – where
you went 2-9, over 19 games, 12 starts, and logging 107 Ks in 84.2 innings.
In 2004, at
The first full professional season
of 2005 saw you record a minor league high 35 games for
The organization began to stretch you out in 2007 at Triple-A Memphis and you proved ready with a career high 67 innings and an ERA just over three while averaging almost a strikeout an inning.
Now, at the age of 25, you will make your major league debut and become the second member of the 2004 draft class to make it to the big leagues. Let me once again say I am sorry for underestimating and underrating you. And even though I may already have egg on my face, the next time I go out to dinner, I will eat crow.
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