Cardinals Sunday Transactions Affect Eight

The St. Louis Cardinals initiated a series of player moves across their system starting with Nick Greenwood's MLB debut.

Martinez Relieves Wainwright in a New Way

With Adam Wainwright being held out of his Monday start for the St. Louis Cardinals due to tendinitis in his right, pitching arm, the club divulged its Plan B on Sunday.

Right-hander Carlos Martinez will move from the bullpen to make the start against the New York Mets at Busch Stadium. The 22-year-old was groomed as a starter, but has relieved in all 51 major league appearances, including 31 this season.

In 2014, Martinez has a 4.67 ERA in 43 2/3 innings to go with 28 strikeouts and 14 walks.

Greenwood is Ultimate Swingman

In both 2013 and 2014, Nick Greenwood has moved from the Memphis bullpen to the rotation whenever needed. On Sunday, St. Louis rewarded the left-hander by purchasing his contract from Triple-A Memphis. That means Greenwood takes the last spot on the Cardinals' 40-man roster and also joins the 25-man active roster. He is expected to provide innings behind Martinez on Monday, as Carlos is not stretched out enough to go deep into the game.

Greenwood, at 6-foot-1, 180-pounds, was 3-3 with a 2.61 ERA in 22 games (three starts) for Memphis this season, limiting the opposition to a .221 batting average in his 41 1/3 innings pitched. Greenwood, a native of Farmington, Connecticut, was 1-0 with a 0.82 ERA in his starts. As a reliever, he stranded all 18 of his inherited runners.

The 26-year-old will be making his Major League debut with his first appearance, becoming the fifth player to debut with the Cardinals this season, joining Randal Grichuk, Greg Garcia, Eric Fornataro and Oscar Taveras.

A veteran of 218 career minor league games (47 starts), Greenwood was acquired by the Cardinals from San Diego on July 31, 2010 in a three-way trade with the Padres and Cleveland Indians that also sent pitcher Jake Westbrook to St. Louis and Ryan Ludwick from St. Louis to San Diego.

Grichuk Goes Down Anyway

Though Grichuk survived the Taveras purge, he lasted just two days more in St. Louis. To make room for Greenwood on the Cardinals' roster, the outfielder was optioned to Memphis.

Grichuk hit just .130 (3-for-23) in his second of two stints in the Majors this season, appearing in 10 games (five starts). He hit the first home run of his career on June 7 at Toronto.

With Memphis, he will compete for outfield playing time with Taveras, Stephen Piscotty, hot-hitting Tommy Pham and Shane Robinson.

O'Neill Back Down to Springfield

Life in baseball is not always fair. So it goes for Mike O'Neill. With the return of Grichuk to Memphis, the outfielder was transferred back down to Double-A Springfield despite performing well.

The left-handed hitter batted .308 with a .400 OBP in nine games for the Redbirds, collecting four walks and striking out once. O'Neill recorded four multi-hit games and added three RBI.

O'Neill also spent the final month of 2013 with Memphis. Other fly chasers on Springfield's active roster are James Ramsey, Starlin Rodriguez and David Popkins.

Almarante Activated

Right-handed reliever Jose Almarante was activated from Memphis' disabled list Sunday. Between two DL stints this season, the Dominican Republic-native made 14 appearances with a 3.32 ERA (eight earned runs in 21 2/3 innings).

Almarante last appeared in game action for the Redbirds on May 28.

McGregor Unconditionally Released

Though they have one roster opening at Memphis, St. Louis unconditionally released starter Scott McGregor on Sunday. After remaining in major league spring training camp unusually late this year, McGregor struggled in his return to Memphis.

Through his 13 starts, he logged a 1-6 record and 6.34 ERA (43 earned runs in 61 innings). McGregor led the team with 12 double plays induced, but had the same amount of walks and strikeouts, 33. His PCL-leading 12 hit batters tied P.J. Walters' Memphis franchise record set in 2011.

The 27-year-old was originally selected in the 15th round (455th overall) of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft from the University of Memphis.

Miclat Shelved

In a move that freed up a spot for O'Neill's return, the Springfield Cardinals placed second baseman Greg Miclat on the seven-day disabled list. The 26-year-old has appeared in just one game since June 10, going 0-for-3 on Friday night.

On the season, his first in the Cardinals system, the switch-hitter has a line of .174/.188/.218 in 138 at-bats over 47 games. Miclat is 10-for-13 in stolen base attempts. Miclat was acquired from Texas in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 Draft on December 12, 2013.

The Cards current starting middle infielders are Jacob Wilson and Matt Williams with Aledmys Diaz working his way back from shoulder problems.

Velazco Helps Out

With Palm Beach down a catcher due to an injury to Jesus Montero, catcher Gerwuins Velazco has been promoted from Peoria. In limited Midwest League action, the 21-year-old Venezuelan went 9-for-22 (.409), including a home run and two RBI.

Peoria already has two catchers in Carson Kelly and Steve Bean.

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



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

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