On Thursday, December 17, the St. Louis Cardinals released three minor league pitchers, according to MiLB.com. They are left-handed reliever Steve Sabatino from Class-A Peoria and right-handers Juan Bautista and Anderson Gerdel from short-season rookie-level Johnson City. The handwriting was on the wall, as each dropped at least one level of play during 2015.
Palm Beach Cardinals Sabatino Slides
Sabatino, 24, was selected by the Cardinals in the 24th round of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft. The former Notre Dame hurler first reached the Midwest League in 2013, but after a number of ups and downs, concluded 2015 at the same level.
Sabatino did advance to A-Advanced Palm Beach for a cup of coffee at the end of 2014 and opened 2015 there, also. After a good start to the season, the sidearmer with a mid-80’s fastball went onto the disabled list in mid-June, returning to Palm Beach’s active roster on July 7.
From June 1 until July 7, Sabatino lost his mojo, allowing nine earned runs in 8 2/3 innings on a whopping 16 hits and three walks. He hit four batters during that time compared to five strikeouts. As a result, he was bounced back down to Peoria on July 22, where he finished out the season.
Sabatino concluded his Cardinals career with a 3.24 ERA to go with 141 strikeouts and 49 walks in 136 innings.
Johnson City Cardinals Bautista Bounced
Bautista, 22, was signed as a non-drafted free agent from the Dominican Republic in June 2010. Late in his second season with the DSL Cardinals, he was promoted to Johnson City, where he remained for 2012. Bautista started 12 games for State College in 2013 and three more for Palm Beach before missing the entire 2014 campaign due to injury.
Back at Johnson City once again in 2015, Bautista did not impress. In 12 appearances, including eight starts with the club he first appeared in 2011, he posted a 5.02 ERA.
Overall, Bautista ended his time as a Cardinal with a 4.27 ERA covering 48 starts and 15 relief appearances. He fanned 198, but walked 109 in 271 2/3 career frames.
Johnson City Cardinals Gerdel Grounded
Gerdel, 22, joined the Cardinals as a non-drafted free agent in November 2009. The Venezuelan native pitched one year each in the VSL and DSL before coming to the US in 2012. After working in the GCL that season, Gerdel spent most of the next two pitching out of the Johnson City bullpen.
For 2015, Gerdel opened in extended spring training before being given a shot with Class-A Peoria starting on June 14. He was returned to Johnson City a month later after allowing seven earned runs, including two long balls, in 15 1/3 innings for a 4.11 Midwest League ERA.
The books have closed on Gerdel’s stint as a Cardinal with 3.58 ERA over 211 1/3 career innings. He logged 176 strikeouts against 42 walks.
For more roster detail
Remember that to see the entire Cardinals system from the Dominican Summer League to St. Louis in one graphical view with all transactions, free agents and more, check out the Roster Matrix, kept updated at The Cardinal Nation Blog.
© 2015 The Cardinal Nation, thecardinalnation.com and stlcardinals.scout.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.