On Tuesday, the St. Louis Cardinals made at least three moves to adjust their 40-man roster with more likely coming this week.
This group includes the release of outfielder Shane Robinson, the news that right-handed reliever Keith Butler cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Memphis and catcher Cody Stanley being added to the 40-man.
In addition, the Cardinals signed 18-year-old Dominican outfielder Brian Sanchez to a minor league deal.
End of the Line for Robinson
There is no delicate way to put it. Shane Robinson had outlived his value to the Cardinals.
Because of his major league service time, the 29-year-old became arbitration-eligible for the first time, and with it would come a substantial increase in salary. However, he likely lost his 25-man roster spot with the acquisition of Jason Heyward. Further, Robinson has exhausted all of his minor league options.
That combination led to a dead end for 2015 and his release prior to the non-tender date of December 2nd, when he was likely to be cut loose anyway. This way, Robinson and his agent have a head start finding him a new home for next season.
In parts of five seasons with St. Louis, including all of 2013, the defensive specialist posted a line of .231/.303/.308/.611 in 452 plate appearances over 268 MLB games. His Cardinals career ended with a late August shoulder injury that required surgery.
Butler’s Rough 2014
Despite a shaky spring with St. Louis, the 25-year-old Butler made the opening day bullpen. Butler was returned to Memphis on April 17 after allowing six earned runs in two innings on six hits, a strikeout and a walk. With the Redbirds, the right-hander was soon injured and underwent Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery on May 28. Therefore, there would have been risk in claiming a player who it seems will unlikely be ready to open the 2015 season.
Butler had been placed on the 40-man roster in November 2012 and made his MLB debut on June 1, 2013. Overall with St. Louis, he has a 6.14 MLB ERA, having yielded 15 runs in 22 innings pitched.
Stanley’s Standout Season Rewarded
The 40-man roster move with Stanley was made to protect him from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft. He is one of four Cardinals prospects The Cardinal Nation predicted would be added, with one, Tyrell Jenkins, having since been traded.
After a 2014 season with Double-A Springfield in which he was the MVP of the Texas League All-Star Game and a post-season all-star as well, Stanley was sent to the Arizona Fall League. There, the catcher learned some first base and batted a respectable .292 with a .363 on-base percentage.
Members of The Cardinal Nation should check the site on Wednesday morning for our exclusive interview with Stanley, recently conducted from the Arizona Fall League.
What is Next
With these moves, the 40-man currently stands at 36. By this Thursday, other eligible players must be added to be protected from December’s Rule 5 Draft. TCN members can view our annual Rule 5 forecast via the link below.
Sanchez Skipping DSL
The Cardinals also signed outfielder Brian Sanchez to a minor league contract for the 2015 season. The 18-year-old is initially assigned to the Gulf Coast League Cardinals. The native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic both bats and throws right-handed. Sanchez stands 6-foot-2 and weighs 180 pounds.
Two DSL Catchers Released
First signed by St. Louis in January 2013, the 19-year-old Pena only improved with the bat slightly from his first season to second, batting .226, then .237. Overall, the right-handed hitter ended his Cards career with a line of .232/.292/.310/.601.
Chevalier, 20, originally played for the 2013 DSL Yankees, but batted just .091 in limited action before being released in December. As a Cardinal, the July free agent signee had a single and double in 13 at-bats for a .154 average.
The Roster Matrix has Who is Where
Every one of the 267 players in the Cardinals system is documented by level and position as is each free agent and every transaction all year long. The place is the Cardinals organization Roster Matrix, free at The Cardinal Nation Blog.
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