The St. Louis Cardinals continue to beef up their minor league catching corps with the acquisition of Michael Ohlman from the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for cash considerations. The transaction was announced Tuesday afternoon.
Ohlman, 24, known more for his offense than defense, had a strong 2013, when the right-handed hitter was the Class A-Advanced Carolina League batting champion, hitting .313 and was named the Topps Carolina League Player of the Year. The 6-foot-5, 215-pounder struggled in 2014, however, batting just .236 in 113 games with Double-A Bowie and is not considered a top prospect.
One downside of the deal is that Ohlman, drafted in 2009’s 11th round from a Florida high school, takes up a 40-man roster berth. The Cardinals had two open spots prior to the trade. The other 40-man catchers include Yadier Molina and Tony Cruz, the pair likely to open with St. Louis, along with Ed Easley and Cody Stanley, who I project to share the catching load at Triple-A Memphis. The latter two just joined the 40-man last fall.
Ohlman becomes the second backstop added by the Cardinals at the upper levels this winter, joining free agent signee Alberto Rosario. I expect the two newcomers, Ohlman and Rosario, to battle incumbent Travis Tartamella for roster spots at Double-A Springfield. Rosario and Tartamella are considered defense-first catchers, so Ohlman would provide a different look.
To see the entire Cardinals system by level and position, along with every transaction all year long, plus all free agents and their status, check out the Roster Matrix at The Cardinal Nation blog.
Not yet a member of The Cardinal Nation? Join today for as little as $7.95 after our seven-day free trial and be able to read each of our Top 40 articles plus all of our exclusive content year-round.
© 2015 The Cardinal Nation, thecardinalnation.com and stlcardinals.scout.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.