Gonzales to Make MLB Debut Wednesday

2013 first-rounder Marco Gonzales to jump from AA to MLB and other Monday system news.

Marco Gets the Call

St. Louis needed a fill-in starting pitcher for Wednesday night. Rather than take the easy way out and have a bullpen game, the club has made the bold and admirable decision to promote 2013 first-rounder Marco Gonzales from Double-A Springfield.

In his seven Texas League starts since his mid-May promotion from Palm Beach, the 22-year-old has been spectacular. Gonzales struck out 46 and walked just 10 in 38 2/3 innings. His Springfield ERA was 2.33.

For details on the pros and cons of calling Gonzales up versus other options, check out this article at The Cardinal Nation blog.

On one hand, the move should not be surprising as Gonzales was said at the time of the 2013 draft to be the closest to the majors of any pitcher available. On the other, I had not expected to see him in St. Louis until September. Losing 2/5 of the MLB rotation changed that in a hurry.

To accommodate Gonzales, the Cardinals will need to make a 40-man roster move and a 25-man roster move as well prior to Wednesday.

Springfield All-Stars Raided

With the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds down three players due to those called up to St. Louis to backfill injured Kolten Wong, Jaime Garcia and Michael Wacha, the Cardinals raided Double-A Springfield for three replacements.

Two of the three, relievers Seth Blair and Joe Donofrio, will be making their Triple-A debuts. The other, infielder Luis Mateo, is a regular on the Memphis-Springfield shuttle.

As a result of the promotions of Gonzales and Donofrio and the injury to James Ramsey, Springfield's Texas League All-Star contingent has been cut from six to three. Those Cardinals remaining for Tuesday's game are Kyle Hald, Cody Stanley and Jonathan Rodriguez.

Springfield, now at 21 players active, will need help before they resume second-half play on Wednesday.

Blair Moves Very Quickly

Just four games into his second career as a reliever, Blair has been promoted to Memphis. The right-hander earlier made 11 starts and overall was 4-6 with a 5.70 ERA. Blair fanned 39 but walked 38 in 60 innings. As a reliever, he allowed a run in two of his four outings.

Donofrio Continues Fastracking

Donofrio has been quite an emerging pitcher. He spent all of 2013 at Class-A Peoria, then jumped over Palm Beach to start 2014 at Springfield and excelled. The right-hander posted a sterling 1.35 ERA (five earned runs in 33 1/3 innings) and six saves in 29 games. His batting average against of .202 is fifth-best among all Texas League relievers.

Mateo Back for a Third Time

Mateo had just been sent down to Springfield from Memphis last Wednesday, but is now retracing his steps. The right-handed hitter went 6-for-14 in his four games back at Double-A this time around after hitting just .212 in 32 games over two earlier stints with Memphis this season. The 24-year-old also had a five-game Triple-A debut last summer.

Wick Best in NYPL

Outfielder Rowan Wick has been named the New York-Penn League Player of the Week for the period of June 13-22.

The 21-year-old blasted two home runs on State College's opening night, launched two more three days later, then hit three more over the next six days for a league-leading total of seven home runs and 11 RBI during the 10-game period.

During this period, the left-handed hitter's line was .343/.452/.971/1.423.

McKinney Top Appy Hurler

Left-hander Ian McKinney has been selected as the Appalachian League Pitcher of the Week for the period of June 16-22.

Perhaps having spent the first week of the short season with State College inspired the 19-year-old. McKinney threw a two-hitter with no walks over seven scoreless innings in his Johnson City debut. He fanned five. Prior to the season, McKinney was ranked number 25 on The Cardinal Nation's top prospect list.

McGregor Resurfaces

Released by the Cardinals from the Memphis rotation and the organization on June 15, right-hander Scott McGregor has been signed to a minor league deal by the Washington Nationals.

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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