Thursday 6/12 Cardinals Minor League News

Marco Gonzales and Chris Swauger are among those in the news across the St. Louis Cardinals system on Thursday, June 12. Afternoon updates added.

Marco Makes it Six

On Wednesday, the Texas League announced that Springfield Cardinals pitcher Marco Gonzales has been added to the 2014 North Division All-Star Team. The left-hander joins outfielder James Ramsey, first baseman Jonathan Rodriguez, catcher Cody Stanley, right-handed reliever Joe Donofrio and left-handed starter Kyle Hald as Double-A Cardinals set to participate in the All-Star Game, to be held Tuesday, June 24.

In five Texas League starts, Gonzales has just one win against two losses, but has pitched well. The 22-year-old sports a 2.63 ERA since being promoted from High-A Palm Beach on May 16. The Colorado native has limited the opposition to one earned run or fewer in four of his five outings, while striking out 32 and walking eight through 27 1/3 Double-A innings.

Swauger's Course Changes Again

In other Springfield news, shortstop Aledmys Diaz is expected to come off the disabled list on Thursday. To make roster room, the Double-A Cards said goodbye to their all-time leader in games played, at-bats and hits. Following Wednesday night's game, outfielder Chris Swauger announced his retirement as an active player.

Update: The 27-year-old is moving into coaching, becoming the hitting coach with the short-season rookie-level Johnson City Cardinals. Swauger is replacing Roberto Espinoza, now assisting the major league club.

First drafted by St. Louis in the 26th round in 2008, Swauger's final season as a player became an unusual journey. He began the spring in regular minor league spring training camp, but was not selected for a spot on any of the full-season rosters due to strong outfield competition. The left-handed hitter remained in extended spring training camp, working out with younger players, until his release on May 1.

Swauger quickly signed with the Phillies, but despite being assigned to A-Advanced level, hit just .154 in eight games before his release. With Springfield short-handed due to injuries, he was re-signed by the Cardinals on June 3. To close his career, Swauger went 7-for-35 (.200) with four RBI in nine Texas League games.

State College Rotation Shaping Up

Dewin Perez has been announced as the starter for the State College Spikes' season opener Friday at Williamsport and Steven Farinaro will start the home opener on Saturday. Luis Perdomo will also be in manager Oliver Marmol's rotation.

New Roster Matrix

A new roster matrix covering the draft and short-season clubs is now active at The Cardinal Nation Blog.

You can track which draftees are signed, where they are assigned and see State College, Johnson City and Gulf Coast League rosters as they are developing.

Diaz Activated

After last playing for Springfield on April 26, shortstop Aledmys Diaz was activated off the seven-day disabled list on Thursday. The 23-year-old, signed as a free agent in March, has dealt with shoulder soreness since before he became a Cardinal.

Diaz had been participating in extended spring training camp in Jupiter, Florida for the last month prior to rejoining Springfield earlier this week.

The right-handed hitter has a line of .307/.321/.520/.841 in his first 76 professional plate appearances in 20 games. Diaz has three home runs and 16 RBI to go with 19 strikeouts and just one walk.

In his first game back in the S-Cards' lineup, Diaz is leading off, but is the designated hitter. That would suggest that despite the layoff, his shoulder is not yet 100 percent.

Ringo's Bat is Back

With just four games remaining in the first half and a wild card berth still possible, the Peoria Chiefs have been playing without their two biggest bats in first baseman Justin Ringo and outfielder Ronald Castillo. The Midwest League club got the former back on Thursday as he was activated from the seven-day disabled list.

Ringo, 23, last played on May 25. Though he had only been with Peoria for six games, his Class-A introduction was most eventful. Six of the left-handed batter's 10 hits in 23 at-bats went for extra bases – four doubles and two home runs. The former Stanford star drove in five, scored seven and even stole a base. His line was a robust .435/.480/.870.

Reyes Packs His Bags

With Ringo's activation, infielder Robelys Reyes has been transferred from Peoria to short-season State College. The 23-year-old had been brought in from extended spring training when Ringo went on the disabled list.

In nine MWL plate appearances, the switch-hitter went 0-for-8 with two strikeouts and a walk. He did come around to score then, but also thrown out trying to steal as a pinch-runner in his final Peoria appearance on Wednesday night.

More News on the Way

Please remember to check back here. If additional transaction news comes to light on Thursday, it will be added to this article!

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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