Earlier this month, we looked into the first wave of 57 players invited to the St. Louis Cardinals extended spring training camp. This article will provide an update to that earlier report, so if you missed it, please go back and read it now.
As mentioned previously would occur a couple of weeks into camp, a group of nine players have arrived in Jupiter, Florida from the Cardinals Dominican Republic academy. They are considered to be ready to compete for jobs on one of the short-season US clubs, which will open play during the second half of June.
Here are the new arrivals, four of whom are Venezuelans, while the other five call the Dominican home. All except one are either 18 or 19 years of age.
|Juan Alvarez||DR||R||R||6-4||180||19||2.68 ERA 9th in system in 2015|
|Franyel Casadilla||VZ||R||R||6-3||175||19||Org top 10: ERA/OBA/WHIP/K/9|
|Will Changarotty||VZ||R||R||6-0||165||20||8 scoreless apps to open 2015|
|Carlos Rodriguez||VZ||R||R||6-2||215||19||Led DSL Cards with .497 SLG|
|Luis Flores||DR||S||R||6-0||190||19||T5th in system w/6 triples 2015|
|Starlin Balbuena||DR||R||R||6-2||175||18||Four 4-hit games in 2015|
|Edwin Figuera||VZ||R||R||5-10||160||18||Led DSL Cards SB(14), HBP(13)|
|Sanel Rosendo||DR||R||R||6-2||205||18||4 2015 games with 2 doubles
|Wadye Ynfante||DR||R||R||6-0||160||18||21-gm hit, 24-gm OBP streaks|
The nine include The Cardinal Nation’s 2015 Dominican Summer League Cardinals Player of the Year, center fielder Wadye Ynfante (pronounced “wah-dee-A”) and Starting Pitcher of the Year, Franyel Casadilla. Casadilla, a right-hander, led DSL Cards starters with a 2.16 ERA over 14 starts last summer and had an excellent strikeout to walk ratio of 5.7 to 1.
Former infielder Ynfante and first baseman Carlos Rodriguez co-led the 2015 DSL Cards with .311 batting averages, the only hitters on the club above .273. The pair were DSL All-Stars last summer and are the only two of the nine to have been invited to instructional league camp in the US last fall.
These new arrivals created enough critical mass to create two extended spring training teams, with the more experienced players primarily on the “White” squad, and the younger players on the “Red” team. The former group includes the top prospect in the system, suspended pitcher Alex Reyes, and the latter includes all nine new academy additions to camp.
Three other international players who also have yet to play in formal games in the US have remained in EST after participating in minor league spring training last month. They are pitcher Alvaro Seijas and catchers Dennis Ortega and Irving Wilson. Seijas, the youngest player in camp at 17, was signed last July 2nd to a 2016 contract for a signing bonus of $762,500.
The two backstops – Ortega and Wilson - competed in the 2015 DSL after participating in extended spring training, illustrating the point that some of the new nine may head back to the academy for DSL play this summer.
In 2015, left-hander David Oca moved even more. He pitched in EST, then returned to the DSL to make four starts, joined the Gulf Coast League Cards, where he appeared in 11 games, before finishing the season with State College.
With the two squads came two daily games in EST, which began this past Monday, April 25 and will continue through Saturday, June 4. The 2016 DSL season will also get underway on June 4.
Here are the two full EST rosters.
|Max Almonte||State College||24||Juan Alvarez||DSL||19|
|Estarlin Arias||GCL||21||Brady Bowen||GCL||23|
|Carson Cross||State College||24||Franyel Casadilla||DSL||19|
|Jonathan Escudero||GCL/JC/SC/PB||22||Will Changarotty||DSL||20|
|Steven Farinaro||JC/GCL||20||Jordan DeLorenzo||GCL||23|
|Harley Holt||PMB/JC||24||Bryan Dobzanski||JC||20|
|Dailyn Martinez||State College||22||Jordan Hicks||GCL||19|
|Julio Mateo||Johnson City||20||Ronald Medrano||DSL/GCL||20|
|Yeison Medina||GCL||23||Ian Oxnevad||GCL||19|
|David Oca||GCL/DSL/SC||20||Frederis Parra||GCL/JC||21|
|Dewin Perez||Peoria||21||Alvaro Seijas||New||17|
|Juan Perez||State College||20||Jacob Schlesener||GCL||19|
|Alex Reyes||GCL/PB/SPR||21||Greg Tomchick||SC||23|
|Jorge Rodriguez||State College||22||Gerwuins Velazco||GCL/SC||24|
|Ramon Santos||Johnson City||21||Bob Wheatley||TOR SS-A||24|
|Riley Drongesen||GCL/JC/SC||23||Erik Garcia||JC||23|
|Joshua Lopez||GCL||20||Dennis Ortega||DSL||18|
|Ryan McCarvel||GCL/JC||21||Frankie Rodriguez||GCL||20|
|Chris Rivera||State College||21||Irving Wilson||DSL||19|
|Joey Hawkins||Johnson City||23||Starlin Balbuena||DSL||18|
|Cole Lankford||State College||23||Allen Cordoba||GCL||20|
|Danny Martin||State College||21||Bryce Denton||GCL||19|
|Jose Martinez||Johnson City||17||Edwin Figuera||DSL||18|
|Josh Swirchak||Peoria||23||Luis Flores||DSL||19|
|Dylan Tice||GCL||23||Carlos Rodriguez||DSL||19|
|Jhohan Acevedo||State College||23||Anthony Ray||JC||20|
|DeAndre Asbury-Heath||Johnson City||20||Jonathan Rivera||GCL||18|
|Luis Bandes||GCL||19||Sanel Rosendo||DSL||18|
|Ricardo Bautista||Johnson City||20||Carlos Torres||GCL||23|
|Bladimil Franco||Johnson City||22||Wadye Ynfante||DSL||18|
In addition to full-season players rehabbing injuries in Jupiter, at least five EST players are apparently among the rehabbers, not listed on either the Red or White rosters. They are pitchers Paul Salazar, Davis Ward, Silas Bohannan, first baseman Hunter Newman and outfielder Nick Plummer. The latter was St. Louis’ first-round draft pick last June.
What is Next
As is customary, I will file reports from Cardinals extended spring training late next week, so look for the first-hand news you can find only at The Cardinal Nation!
For roster and player information
The team rosters here at The Cardinal Nation are as up-to-date for St. Louis and all four full-season clubs. All EST players remain on one of the short-season clubs based on where they ended 2015. To access these team rosters, click on the words “PROSPECTS” > “MiLB Rosters/Player Pages” underneath The Cardinal Nation site logo.
To see the Cardinals’ entire system by level and position on one page along with every player transaction for every club all year long, check out the newly-refreshed Roster Matrix at The Cardinal Nation blog.
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