Big City Back in Bigs
Headlining St. Louis Cardinals system-wide news on Friday is the expected activation of first baseman Matt Adams off St. Louis' 15-day disabled list. Rehabbing his left calf strain at Triple-A Memphis this week, Adams completed the four-game injury rehab stint by going 3-for-15 with a pair of RBI.
With St. Louis, Adams is currently ranked fifth in the National League with his team-leading .325 batting average, and despite missing 13 games, he is still tied for the team lead with 16 doubles. Adams was immediately returned to the Cardinals lineup, batting sixth on Friday night.
Taveras Draws Short Straw
Amid rampant speculation by some that outfielder Randal Grichuk would be optioned out to Triple-A Memphis to make room for Adams, it was Oscar Taveras instead. The 21-year-old's first major league stint lasted 11 games and 40 plate appearances.
A home run in his first game created excitement that did not immediately follow, as the left-handed hitter's line was .189/.225/.297. Taveras should be back with the Cardinals soon enough – likely upon the next injury to a starting outfielder or first baseman.
Mystery Man to Florida
Having been with the Memphis Redbirds all season long, but only activated earlier this week, catcher Dante Rosenberg was bumped from the Triple-A roster to make room for Taveras.
The 23-year-old had one plate appearance with Memphis, during which he grounded into a double play. Signed as a non-drafted free agent last summer, Rosenberg's new assignment, A-Advanced Palm Beach, is more appropriate for his current level of development.
Rosenberg should get a chance to play at Palm Beach as the club placed catcher Jesus Montero on the seven-day disabled list on Friday. With the retirement of Casey Rasmus earlier this week, it seemed Montero could receive starters' at-bats behind the place for manager Dann Bilardello's club.
Instead, Montero left Wednesday's game in the fifth inning, though it was actually Thursday. The game had been suspended in the fourth and picked up the next day. Montero had to come out of the contest after being injured while catching a popup in foul territory.
Make it Two Beach Catchers Down
Even with the addition of Rosenberg, the Cardinals netted down one catcher at Palm Beach as Jose Godoy was re-assigned to the Johnson City Cardinals.
Called upon to fill in at Palm Beach for the second time this season, most recently when Rasmus retired earlier this week, the 19-year-old experienced first official FSL game action. At the plate, Godoy went 0-for-4 with a strikeouts.
Godoy completed in the Gulf Coast League in 2013, his first season in the US. The left-handed hitter posted a credible but power-starved line of .263/.368/.307 in 114 at-bats over 36 contests.
With the Florida State League off for the all-star break until Monday, expect the Cardinals to assign another catcher to join Rosenberg on Palm Beach's roster by then. The A-Advanced Cards will also need another outfielder to open the second half, based on the next pair of transactions that follow.
Peoria Roster Shuffle Affects Garcia
The organization ended infielder Ronnierd Garcia's brief time with Class-A Peoria by sending the 21-year-old down to short-season State College, in time for the latter club's Friday season opener.
Garcia had joined the Chiefs June 4 when outfielder Jimmy Bosco was promoted to Palm Beach. The right-handed hitter appeared in nine Midwest League games, going 5-for-28. His slash line was .179/.207/.250.
New Chief is Designated Garcia Replacement
The Cardinals assigned outfielder Luis Perez from Palm Beach to replace Garcia at Peoria. It is the 22-year-old's second stint with the Chiefs as he had joined them for a one-game fill-in last season and hit a three-run home run.
This season, Perez joined Palm Beach from extended spring training camp on May 17 when outfielder Anthony Garcia was placed on the disabled list. In 40 at-bats over 13 games, the right-handed batter had nine hits for a .225 average. Perez doubled twice, drove in three and scored four times. His OPS as a Beach Bird was .554.
Two New Spikes
Though the St. Louis Cardinals have not officially announced the signing of catcher Brian O'Keefe (7th round) and outfielder Collin Radack (20th), the two are on the roster of the State College Spikes and are active for Friday night's New York-Penn League opener.
O'Keefe is from St. Joseph's University in Pennsylvania while Radack went to Hendrix College in Arkansas.
Another glove for De Leon
One interesting roster shift that occurred along with O'Keefe's arrival at State College is a move by the prior third catcher, Alex De Leon, from behind the plate to the infield, likely first base. The other catchers on the Chiefs roster remain Luis Cruz and Adam Ehrlich.
Three Spikes Not Yet Active
Three draftees and to-be members of the Spikes per Cardinals announcements this week are not yet active with the club. They are ninth-rounder, right-handed pitcher Daniel Poncedeleon, second baseman Darren Seferina, taken in the fifth round, and 36th-rounder, right-handed pitcher Cody Schumacher.
Ferrara Goes Indy in Jersey
Released by the Cardinals from his assignment as a reliever with Double-A Springfield on June 5, left-hander Anthony Ferrara is not yet ready to give up playing baseball. The 24-year-old was a free agent just one week before signing with the New Jersey Jackals of the independent Can-Am League.
Castillo Out of Runway Again
The Peoria Chiefs had been holding out hope that Midwest League starting All-Star right-fielder Ronald Castillo would recover from his abdominal strain in time to be activated off the disabled list before the conclusion of the first half. If so, he could start in the mid-season classic to be held this Tuesday evening, June 17.
Unfortunately, that hope was lost when Castillo was sent to the Cardinals complex in Jupiter, Florida for rehab purposes. The 21-year-old began his second stint on the DL with the same ailment on June 6.
Castillo cannot buy an all-star break. He made the New York-Penn League game last year, only to miss out playing due to injury.
Chiefs, McElroy Still Benefit
Some good comes from the misfortune. Castillo's spot in the Midwest League All-Star starting lineup on Tuesday will be taken by his Chiefs teammate C.J. McElroy, reports the Peoria Journal-Star.
Other Chiefs all-stars are pitchers Chris Perry, Arturo Reyes and Zach Loraine and position players Juan Herrera and Carson Kelly.
Please remember to check back here. If additional transaction news comes to light on Friday, it will be added to this article!
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