Motte Named Cards Minors Reliever of the Year

Managing Editor
Posted Oct 27, 2008

Right-hander Jason Motte is our Relief Pitcher of the Year for the St. Louis Cardinals minor league system in 2008.

What better reference can one find than Jason Motte to epitomize the positive changes across the St. Louis Cardinals minor league system?


Left exposed but untaken in the Rule 5 draft less than two years ago, the weak-hitting catcher-turned fireballing reliever has now rocketed up the hierarchy to the point the organization reportedly would not consider trading him over the summer for much-needed major league relief help, albeit short-term, perhaps.


In recent years, the Cardinals organization had been savaged as being one of the worst in the game, allegedly lacking in major league prospects both quantity and quality. Yet on September 3, Motte joined ten other Cardinals prospects that had previously made their major league debuts this season.


They include pitchers Kyle McClellan, Mark Worrell, Chris Perez, Mitchell Boggs, Mike Parisi and Jaime Garcia, infielder Rico Washington, outfielders Joe Mather, Nick Stavinoha and Rule 5-pick up Brian Barton. The latter spent time in Memphis on a rehab assignment, joining nine of the ten that directly contributed to the 2008 Redbirds. Only McClellan jumped over Triple-A.


Including Barton, 22 of our top 42 Cardinals prospects from last winter spent time on the Memphis roster this season, including 14 of the top 21 and a most-impressive eight of the top 11.


Of them all, Motte, our #22-ranked Cardinals prospect coming into the season, stepped to the forefront, both at the Triple-A level and in the majors, leading to his selection as our St. Louis Cardinals Minor League Relief Pitcher of the Year for 2008.


The 26-year-old was previously named our Memphis Redbirds Reliever of the Year, as well.


The others


As a reminder, following is the full list of our 2008 Relievers of the Year at the various levels of the Cardinals system.

Premium Article subscribers can click on the players’ names to read the detailed articles on each, recapping their 2008 accomplishments, quotes and much more:


Memphis: Motte

Springfield: Fernando Salas

Palm Beach: Francisco Samuel

Quad Cities: Pete Parise

Batavia: Adam Reifer

Johnson City: Samuel Freeman

Gulf Coast League: David Carpenter

Dominican Summer League: Eduard Estalis

Venezuelan Summer League: David Brito


By the numbers


As with all system-wide awards, there was significant competition. Our own Leonda Markee assembled 2008 system-wide stats, both traditional and sabermetric, for Cardinals minor league relievers.


Qualifications: Jon Mikrut’s 82 IP led the relievers that pitched solely out of the bullpen. Having pitched at least half of that was required to qualify.


Earned Run Average
Rk Player  Team ERA  G IP ER 
1 Mark Worrell Mem 2.15 53 58.2 14
2 Pete Parise PB/QC 2.24 47 64.1 16
3 Francisco Samuel PB/QC 2.83 59 63.2 20
4 Eduardo Sanchez QC 2.86 24 56.2 18
5 Kelvin Jimenez Mem 2.92 46 52.1 17
DIPS Earned Run Average
Rk Player  Team dERA dIP dER
1 Jason Motte Mem 63 2.47 73.6 20.2
2 Mark Worrell Mem 53 2.60 60.4 17.4
3 Josh Dew Sprf/PB 59 2.80 79.4 24.7
T-4 Eduardo Sanchez QC 24 2.85 54.1 17.1
T-4 Jose Mateo PB/JC 21 2.85 43.1 13.7
Rk Player  Team FIP HR  BB  HB  SO 
1 Jason Motte Mem 2.28 6 26 1 110
2 Mark Worrell Mem 2.55 2 31 1 80
3 Jose Mateo PB/JC 2.80 1 10 1 31
4 Josh Dew Sprf/PB 2.88 3 32 5 87
5 Justin Fiske Sprf/PB/QC 3.01 5 35 2 96
Rk Player  Team FIP IP  BB  WHIP 
1 Pete Parise PB/QC 3.43 64.1 55 14 1.07
2 Fernando Salas Sprf 3.34 74 65 16 1.09
3 John Wasdin Mem 3.90 110.1 102 20 1.11
4 Eduardo Sanchez QC 3.24 56.2 40 25 1.15
T-5 Luke Gregerson Sprf 3.32 75.1 62 26 1.17
T-5 Jon Mikrut Sprf/PB 4.72 82 72 24 1.17
Strikeouts-to-Walks Ratio
Rk Player  Team IP  BB  SO  K/BB
1 Jose Rada GCL 45 4 37 9.3
2 Fernando Salas Sprf 74 16 100 6.3
3 John Wasdin Mem 110.1 20 97 4.9
4 Pete Parise PB/QC 64.1 14 62 4.4
5 Jason Motte Mem 66.2 26 110 4.2
The Flamethrowers
Rk Player  Team IP  SO  K/9 IP
1 Jason Motte Mem 66.2 110 14.8
2 Francisco Samuel PB/QC 63.2 94 13.3
3 Mark Worrell Mem 58.2 80 12.3
4 Fernando Salas Sprf 74 100 12.2
5 Josh Dew Sprf/PB 76 87 10.3
The Control Artists
Rk Player  Team IP  BB  BB/9 IP
1 Jose Rada GCL 45 4 0.8
2 John Wasdin Mem 110.1 20 1.6
3 Fernando Salas Sprf 74 16 1.9
4 Pete Parise PB/QC 64.1 14 2.0
5 Kelvin Jimenez Mem 52.1 12 2.1
Batting Average Against
Rk Player  Team IP  TBF BAA
1 Francisco Samuel PB/QC 63.2 43 286 0.191
2 Eduardo Sanchez QC 56.2 40 233 0.209
3 Mark Worrell Mem 58.2 45 249 0.210
4 Luke Gregerson Sprf 75.1 62 312 0.221
5 Marco Gonzalez Sprf/PB 72.1 59 301 0.226
Rk Player  Team SV  IP 
1 Francisco Samuel PB/QC 59 30 63.2
2 Fernando Salas Sprf 60 25 74
3 Pete Parise PB/QC 47 13 64.1
4 Kelvin Jimenez Mem 46 12 52.1
5 Luke Gregerson Sprf 57 10 75.1


Master article with all 2008 Cardinals Minor League Players of the Year and the schedule for daily announcements: link. (This link is also permanently located at the lower left of The Birdhouse home page.)



If you missed our Players of the Year as they were unveiled, it’s not too late to catch up! Subscribe now to and follow our countdown of the top Players and Pitchers of the Year at every level of the Cardinals minor league system. Next up will be Starting Pitcher and Player of the Year, before moving on to Top Rookies.


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Brian Walton can be reached via email at


© 2008 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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