Cardinals Targeting Donaldson..again

donaldsonjosh

When I think of Cardinal third basemen that stood out in the past that showed consistency and leadership just a few names comes to mind…Ken Boyer, Scott Rolen and Terry Pendleton. If the Cardinals want to keep Matt Carpenter at first base then the powers that be must make a move for a power hitting third baseman. Well this morning Bob Nightengale tweets….The , who badly need a slugger in the middle of their lineup next year, are expected to strongly pursue  3B Josh Donaldson.

Donaldson missed significant time with a calf injury this season, but when healthy he’s produced in pretty much a characteristic manner: .272/.389/.564 with 33 home runs in 111 games. Donaldson in 2018 will be in his age-32 season and walk year. He signed a two-year, $28.65 million deal with the Jays prior to the 2016 season, but he’ll be arbitration-eligible prior to next season. Given that Donaldson made $17 million this year and put up big numbers, he’s going to be in for a hefty 2018 payday. That’s obviously a consideration for any team interested in dealing for him. The Cardinals already have more than $100 million on the books for 2018, and that’s not counting a handful of arbitration raises. That said, they can certainly handle the Donaldson investment.

So who would the Cardinals give up to trade for this former American League MVP? The Cardinals have a surplus of both outfielders and multi-positional infielders, so they’re a fit for Toronto’s needs as potential trade partners. The Bluejays perspective on who they want from the Cardinals are quite interesting. The players of interest that the Bluejays would love to have to consider trading from the Cardinals would be Alex, Reyes, Tyler O’Neill or Jedd Gyrko. In other words the Cardinals will need blow the Bluejay brass away.

Source: Bob Nightengale-Tom Dakers

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Ray Lankford Plans to Return

bestray

When Tommy Pham became St. Louis Cardinals 20/20 player for 2017 not only was I so happy for him but I also wonder who was the last Cardinal player to do be a part of the 20/20 club and it was Reggie Sanders in 2004. In 1992, 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1998 Ray Lankford was a 20/20 guy and he is also the only player in franchise history to accomplish the feat more than once. Ray was also known for his impressive fielding he posted  a 2.90 range factor in 1992 and committing only one error in 1996. In the latter season, he led the league with a fielding percentage of .997 but was still not awarded a Gold Glove.

Bernardgabe

(Bernard Gilkey and my son Gabe)…………..I was able to sit down with Mr.Gilkey during a water break at the Cardinals Baseball Camp for Kids and talked about his good friend Ray Lankford. He told me that Ray now resides in the Orlando, Fl area. He does plan to reconnect with the Cardinals in the near future in regards to working with the players. Gilkey also feels that Lankford should be in the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame soon, his numbers with the Cardinals still stand. Ray finished his career among the Cardinal Top Ten in a number of  statistical categories, including home runs (third), stolen bases (fifth), runs scored (eighth), runs batted in (eighth), and bases on balls (fourth). He also hit more home runs at Busch Stadium (123) than any other player, and finished his career in his home ballpark with a pinch hit home run in his final major league at bat on October 3, 2004

Simontacchi Named Coach of the Year

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The Springfield Cardinals are also proud to announce that Springfield Pitching Coach Jason Simontacchi has been named the Mike Coolbaugh Memorial Texas League Coach of the Year.In his third season as the Springfield Pitching Coach, the former St. Louis Cardinal

guided Springfield’s pitching staff to the 2nd-best team ERA in the league this season, tied with the Tulsa Drillers at 3.62. Under Simontacchi’s tutelage, Cardinals RHP Dakota Hudson was named the Texas League Pitcher of the Year, becoming the first-ever Springfield hurler to win that award.

Additionally, three Cardinals starting pitchers collected Texas League Player of the Month Awards, with RHP Jack Flaherty honored for April, RHP Matt Pearce winning it for May and LHP Austin Gomber collecting it for August. Flaherty, Hudson and Pearce were each named to the exclusive Texas League Postseason All-Star Roster, accounting for three of the six spots for pitchers on the team.

In 2017 alone, seven former Springfield Cardinals that Simontacchi worked with at Hammons Field have toed the rubber for St. Louis, including RHP Luke Weaver, RHP Jack Flaherty, RHP Sandy Alcantara, RHP John Brebbia, LHP Ryan Sherriff, RHP Josh Lucas and RHP Mike Mayers.

Cardinals 2018 Season Schedule

Colorado Rockies v St Louis Cardinals

Press Release

The St. Louis Cardinals, in conjunction with Major League Baseball’s league-wide release, today announced their 2018 regular season schedule.The Cardinals will open their 2018 season on Thursday, March 29 in New York against the Mets at Citi Field as part of a season-opening six-game road trip that will also take them to Milwaukee for three games. The Redbirds will open the home portion of their 2018 campaign on Thursday, April 5 against the Arizona Diamondbacks as part of a six-game home stand with Arizona and Milwaukee.

The Cardinals will host the Chicago Cubs for three weekend series at Busch Stadium (May 4-6, June 15-17 & July 27-29). Coming out of the Major League Baseball All-Star break, the Cardinals will play the Cubs seven times over 11 days with four games in Chicago, including a nationally-televised showcase game on Thursday, July 19 at Wrigley Field.

The season opening game against the Mets will be the Cardinals first opener at Citi Field and the team’s first in New York since 1996, when they opened against the Mets at Shea Stadium in Tony La Russa’s first season as manager of the Cardinals. The March 29 season opener will be the earliest in franchise history, as Major League Baseball opens its season four days earlier, allowing teams three to four additional open dates in 2018.

The Cardinals 20-game interleague schedule will feature a pair of three-game home-and-home series with in-state rival Kansas City (May 21-23 at Busch Stadium & Aug. 10-12 at Kansas City) and a pair of two-game home-and-home series with the Chicago White Sox (May 1-2 at Busch Stadium & July 10-11 in Chicago) and the Minnesota Twins (May 7-8 at Busch Stadium & May 15-16 at Minnesota). In addition, there will be a three-game home interleague series against the Cleveland Indians (June 25-27) and a three-game road series at Detroit (Sept. 7-9).

The Cardinals longest home stands of the 2018 season consist of seven games (six times) and their longest road trips are a pair of nine-gamers (July 2-11 & August 3-12). The Cardinals will host a three-game series with Cincinnati (July13-15) prior to the July 16-18 Major League Baseball All-Star break.

The 2018 season will close with a three-game series Sept. 28-30 at Chicago against the Cubs, marking the first time the two teams have closed out the regular season at Wrigley Field since 1991.

St. Louis will be home for a total of 13 weekend series in 2018: April 5-8 vs. Arizona, April 20-22 vs. Cincinnati, May 4-6 vs. Chicago Cubs, May 17-20 vs. Philadelphia, May 31-June 3 vs. Pittsburgh, June 15-17 vs. Chicago Cubs, June 29-July 1 vs. Atlanta, July 13-15 vs. Cincinnati, July 27-29 vs. Chicago Cubs, August 17-19 vs. Milwaukee, August 31-September 2 vs. Cincinnati, September 13-16 vs. Los Angeles Dodgers and September 21-23 vs. San Francisco.

With the earlier start to the season, the Major League schedule will include 27 weekend dates in 2018 as opposed to 26 this season.

The Cardinals are scheduled to play 48 of their 81 home games before the All-Star break, playing 12 home games in April, 15 in May, 17 in June, 9 in July, 13 in August and 15 in September. St. Louis is not scheduled to play any home games on National Holidays in 2018.

The Cardinals will make future announcements regarding game times, ticket pricing and ticket availability for the 2018 season. To view the full 2018 regular season schedule, visit cardinals.com.

Source: St. Louis Cardinals

Cards Trade for Juan Nicasio

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The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have acquired right-handed reliever Juan Nicasio  (pronounced nih-KAH-see-oh) from the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for minor league infielder Eliezer Alvarez.

Nicasio, 31, had joined the Phillies just last week (August 31) on a waiver claim from the Pittsburgh Pirates.  The 6-4, 250-pound Dominican native has combined to go 3-5 with a 2.79 ERA in a National League-leading 67 games between Pittsburgh (65 games) and Philadelphia (2 games) in 2017.   Nicasio, has fanned 61 batters in his 61.1 innings of work this season, walked only 18, and he’s allowed just four home runs while holding the opposition to .218 batting mark, including a .200 average vs. left-handed batters.    His 21 Holds rank T5th in the National League this season and his 1.09 WHIP is ranked 15th among all N.L. relievers.

Nicasio, who debuted with the Colorado Rockies in 2011, has appeared in 260 career games (82 starts) with the Rockies (2011-14), Los Angeles Dodgers (2015), Pittsburgh (2016-17) and Philadelphia (2017), putting together a career mark of 35-37 with a 4.60 ERA in 618.2 innings pitched.

A free-agent at season’s end, Nicasio will make every effort to join the Cardinals in San Diego for the conclusion of their road trip that includes games both tonight and tomorrow night.  He would not be eligible for postseason play should the Cardinals qualify.

Alvarez, 22, was signed by the Cardinals as a non-drafted international free-agent on July 2, 2011 out of Santiago, Dominican Republic.   The 5-11, 190-pound middle infielder batted a combined .248 with 5 HR’s and 28 RBI in 61 games between Springfield (AA) and the Gulf Coast League Cardinals (R) in 2017.

Nicasio has been assigned uniform no. 12.

St. Louis Cardinals

Phillies Grab Siegrist

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The Phillies have announced that they’ve claimed lefty Kevin Siegrist from the Cardinals. The Cards designated Siegrist for assignment on Thursday as they activated him from a stint he spent on the DL with forearm tendinitis. To clear space on their 40-man roster, the Phillies have transferred righty Jerad Eickhoff (hand) to the 60-day DL.

Siegrist was a key reliever for the Cardinals in 2015 and 2016, when he combined for a 2.44 ERA, 10.3 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 over 136 1/3 innings. This season, though, he’s dealt with a neck injury in addition to the forearm problem, and he’s posted a 4.98 ERA, 9.4 K/9 and 5.2 BB/9 over 34 1/3 innings. He’s also dealt with somewhat diminished velocity, with his mid-90s heater dipping more into the 92-93 MPH range.

Siegrist is, however, eligible for arbitration for two more seasons after this one and he’s making a modest $1.64MM this year. Assuming he’s able to come back healthy, the Phillies can use the rest of the season to get a read on him, then decide if they want to keep him in their bullpen as a relatively cheap addition for 2018. The Phillies, despite not contending this season, have also already shown somewhat of a willingness to take on short-term veteran bullpen upgrades, having also recently added Juan Nicasio on a waiver claim.

MLB Traderumors

September Call Ups

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The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have promoted five players from their minor league system, as Major League Baseball rosters are allowed to expand up to 40 players beginning today.

The Cardinals today announced that they have purchased the contract of rookie right-handed pitcher Jack Flaherty from Memphis (AAA) and that he will start tonight’s game in San Francisco.  The Redbirds also announced that they have purchased the contract of rookie right-handed pitcher Sandy Alcántara from Springfield (AA) and the contract of catcher Alberto Rosario from Memphis.   In addition, infielder Alex Mejia and outfielder Harrison Bader have been recalled from Memphis.

The Cardinals also announced that left-handed pitcher Sean Gilmartin has been outrighted off of the team’s 40-man roster, creating space for today’s additions.

JACK FLAHERTY #32 – RHP: The Cardinals first round pick (34th overall) in the 2014 amateur draft out of Harvard-Westlake High School (Calif.) will become the 14th youngest Cardinals pitcher to make his Major League debut as a starter (21-years, 320 days) and the youngest since Rick Ankiel (20 years-35 days) did so at Montreal on Aug. 23, 1999.  He is the fourth Cardinals pitcher to make his Major League debut this season and the first Cardinals pitcher since Kurt Kepshire (1984) to debut as a starter in San Francisco.

The 6-4, 225-pound right-hander was 14-4 with a 2.18 ERA over 25 starts between Springfield (AA) and Memphis (AAA) this season.  He struck out 147 batters in 148.2 innings with a 1.04 WHIP, allowing only 12 home runs and posted identical 7-2 records in both Springfield and Memphis.  He’s leading all Cardinals minor league pitchers in wins, ERA and strikeouts, something no Cardinals’ minor league pitcher has done since Ankiel in 1999.

Flaherty’s 14 wins rank T-3rd among all minor league pitchers in 2017 and he’s the first Cardinals’ minor league right-handed pitcher to record 14 wins in a season since Seth Maness did so in 2012.  His 2.18 ERA ranks 12th among minor league full-season pitchers, while his 1.04 WHIP ranks 18th.

Flaherty was selected to pitch in the Futures Games at the 2017 MLB All-Star Game in Miami and pitched the 6th inning for the USA Team.  He was recognized as a Texas League Mid-Season and Post-Season All-Star while earning Cardinals Minor League Pitcher of the Month and Texas League Pitcher of the Month honors in April. He is a high school teammate of current Major League pitchers Lucas Giolito of the Chicago White Sox and Max Fried of the Atlanta Braves.

SANDY ALCÁNTARA #56 – RHP: Pronounced al-CAHN-ta-rah…the 6-5, 185-pound 21-year-old is a native of San Juan De La Maguana, Dominican Republic…was an international free-agent signing by the Cardinals on July 2, 2013…he was 7-5 with 4.31 ERA in 25 games (22 starts) for Springfield Cardinals of the Texas League (AA) this season– his first season at double-A… moved into relief role for the S-Cards on Aug. 23 and has struck out 5 in 4.0 innings pitched in three appearances out of the bullpen…ranks among Texas League leaders in innings pitched (125.1-12th), strikeouts (106-9th) and WHIP (1.43-14th)…was 1-0 with a 2.14 ERA in six appearances (3 starts) in August, striking out 23 in 21.0 innings pitched…he ranked 5th among all Class-A level pitchers in strikeouts (153) last season in 23 starts between Peoria and Palm Beach.

ALBERTO ROSARIO #68 – C: Is a veteran of nine seasons in the minors…the 30-year-old Dominican native joined the Cardinals organization for the 2015 season after stints in the Angels, Red Sox and Dodgers systems…made his Major League debut with the Cardinals on July 9, 2016 after 709 games in the minors…has appeared in 20 Major League games (started eight), batting .184 (7-for-38) with 2 RBI…collected his first M.L hit as a pinch-hitter on July 9, 2016 at Milwaukee…was batting .247 in 50 games for Memphis (AAA) this season, including .288 mark in August & .310 with runners in scoring position…has thrown out 4 of 12 attempted base-stealers (33 pct.) at the Major League level & 302 of 746 (40 pct.) in the minors.

            ALEX MEJIA #54 – INF: Right-handed hitting infielder is being promoted for his second stint with the Cardinals this season…has played at three levels this year (AA, AAA, MLB)…the 26-year-old Sylmar, Calif. native was the Cardinals 4th round draft selection in 2012 out of the University of Arizona where he was an all-American at shortstop and earned PAC-12 Conference Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year selections for the Wildcats in their College World Series championship season…batted .214 (3-for-14) in 10 games with the Cardinals earlier (June 28 – July 9) this year, collecting his 1st ML hit on July 1 vs. Washington, while also homering and collecting 2 RBI in start at 2nd base…was batting a combined .291 with 7 HR’s, 57 RBI and 32 doubles in 118 games between Springfield (AA) – 63 games and Memphis (AAA) – 55 games… named to Texas League North Division All-Star team…had .335 BA and .381 OBP at Memphis….has played all four infield positions this year at Memphis, where he was errorless in 25 games at shortstop and 16 at second base…was errorless in 17 total chances with the Cardinals, playing SS, 2B & 3B.

HARRISON BADER #48 – OF: Pronounced BAY-der…rookie outfielder is being promoted for his second tour with the Cardinals this year after debuting on July 25 vs. Colorado when he scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the 9th in a 3-2 walk-off victory…played six games with the Cardinals during his call-up from July 25-31…batted .286 (6-for-21) with St. Louis, starting all six of his games in centerfield…23-year-old was the Cardinals 3rd round draft selection (100th player overall) in 2015 draft out of the University of Florida, where he played in the College World Series and was named to the NCAA World Series Tournament Team…the 6-0, 200-pound right-handing hitting Bader is a native of Bronxville, NY…was named to Arizona Fall League All-Prospect team and Rising Stars Game last year…was batting .283 with 20 HR’s, 55 RBI and 15 SB’s in 123 games at Memphis this season…111 of his 117 defensive games played this year for Memphis have come in centerfield.

 Source: St. Louis Cardinals