TCN 2014 Cards Prospect #15: Patrick Wisdom

What is ahead in 2014 for the only one of three third basemen taken early in the 2012 draft by the Cardinals that remains at the position?

The Cardinal Nation/ Player Profile
(including links to full 2013 and career stats)

2013 rank Pos. DOB Ht. Wt. Bat Thw Signed Round
18 3B 8/27/1991 6-2 210 R R 2012 1s

School: St. Mary's College of California

Selected 2013 stats

Peo 0.231 0.294 372 54 86 20 13 62 42 114 4 0.332 0.312 0.411 0.723
PB 0.250 0.313 92 8 23 4 2 11 9 23 1 0.317 0.317 0.359 0.676
Total 0.235   464 62 109 24 15 73 51 137 5   0.313 0.401 0.714

Staff comments (individual rankings in parentheses)

Message board community (16): Ranked 20th last winter by the community, Patrick Wisdom moves up four spots to 16th in this year's vote after his first full season as a professional.

Wisdom impressed last summer in his brief time at Batavia in 65 games, hitting for a respectable enough average. He put behind him a nearly 90 point drop off in his junior year at St. Mary's to a very pedestrian .263. The ability to hit for average remains concerning as Wisdom's first full season mark was .235.

Wisdom does flash good power potential, as he has done since college. For a first-year player, 15 home runs is not bad and his splits show he was starting to figure things out. His average climbed most every month and he had above-average walk rates too.

One of the Cardinals' three supplemental first-rounders in the 2013 draft, Wisdom played some first base in his time at Peoria but that was mostly to give Carson Kelly more at bats and playing time at third. Now that Kelly has made the conversion to behind the plate, it indicates the organization feels Wisdom can be their third baseman of the future. To do so, he must continue to progress as he moves up the ladder, which is a clearer path now that Kelly is out of the picture.

Wisdom's power and defense is what makes him a big league prospect. I think starting him off in Springfield would be the best fit in 2014. If he shows he can hit .260-to-.270 against Texas League pitching, Wisdom could end up as a top 10 prospect at season's end. - DTFlush234

Brian Walton (17): I want to be clear that I am not down on Wisdom, though my personal rating of 17 compared to 14 last year is a reflection of the fact that I had hopes he would do a bit more offensively in 2013. I think the moves of Wisdom's fellow third base draftees Stephen Piscotty and Carson Kelly off the position says far more about them than it does about Wisdom. After all, there is not much competition.

Drafted young for a college player at just 20 years of age - Wisdom encouragingly put up comparable slash line numbers to Piscotty last year, but not so in 2013 – at lower levels. Wisdom continued to show good plate discipline but his BABIP does not create optimism about his average going forward.

From a production perspective, he gets the job done. His RBI count was strong - fifth in the system - and his home run total placed in the top 10. One talent evaluator especially likes Wisdom's bat speed and is reminded of former Cardinal Ryan Ludwick at the plate.

From the very start, Wisdom has received positive reviews for his defense, which remains his most standout tool. He definitely sports a strong arm and may be the best throwing infielder in the system. He is also a survivor. As other third basemen have fallen by the wayside, he is the only remaining player at the position in our entire top 40.

Matt Carpenter is still relatively young in MLB experience, but arrived later than many. His current age of 28 plus eventual free agent status reminds us that the organization may have five years or less to come up with a successor. As promising as Wisdom may be, the Cardinals will need to focus on restocking the hot corner positional pipeline in the 2014 draft.

Our 2014 top 40 countdown continues: To see the list of top Cardinals prospects announced to date and remaining article schedule, click here. You can also read the voters' philosophies in making their selections.

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