D’Marcus Ingram is one of the last of his kind. The speedy outfielder became part of the St. Louis Cardinals’ organization in May 2007 as a draft-and-follow from the 2006 draft. The practice, which allowed a team to take a player but not sign him until the next spring, is no longer allowed under Major League Baseball’s draft rules.
Ingram broke in with the Cardinals in a big way during the 2007 Gulf Coast League season with a .325 average and a .430 on base percentage. The now-22-year-old could not find consistency during his next two seasons as he moved up the minor league ladder. His struggles continued in April of this season as well but when the calendar turned to May, the Little Rock native exploded.
With a line of .408/.482/.633, Ingram is The Cardinal Nation Player of the Month for May. The speedy centerfielder posted more walks, 13, than strikeouts, 11. Ingram performed so well at the plate while serving as his Quad Cities team’s leadoff man and performing in the physically demanding role of the River Bandits’ centerfielder. After only 16 hits in April, he had a whopping 40 during May.
His only area of weakness during the month seemed to be his results on the bases. Ingram, with speed to burn, was successful only six times in 11 steal attempts.
For the season, he is now hitting .339, the fourth best mark in the Midwest League. Ingram is sixth in on base percentage and ninth in hits. His six triples are tied for third place in the league while his 87 total bases is tied for the seventh best mark.
There are many expectations when you are a number one pick. Pete Kozma lived up to those expectations during the month of May. At Double-A Springfield, the shortstop hit .327/.367/.495 with three home runs and 20 RBIs.
After spending part of the month in the big leagues, most pitchers in the Pacific Coast League have to want Tyler Greene to return to the majors. And quickly. The former Georgia Tech star hit .355/.403/.548 in 62 at bats for the Redbirds.
While honing his craft behind the plate, Springfield's Steven Hill hit six home runs in 96 at bats during the month.
Matt Carpenter was the first of the team's 2009 draft picks to make Double-A and he is proving the orgainzation was right in promoting him. In 19 Texas League games, the TCU product is hitting .382/.447/.526 in 76 at bats.
Amaury Cazana hit .319/.356/.522 with four home runs and 22 RBIs in only 21 games during the month for Memphis.
Ingram's Quad Cities teammate, C.J. Beatty, has posted a slash line of .296/.409/.407 since being promoted to full season ball on May 6.
Update: On Wednesday, the Cardinals also named Ingram their organizational Player of the Month.
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