Ronnie Shaban (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

The St. Louis Cardinals have cut loose six minor league pitchers and an infielder, all of whom were competing for full-season jobs.

The St. Louis Cardinals have cut loose six minor league pitchers and an infielder, all of whom were competing for full-season jobs. This increases the total releases for the week to 20.

The St. Louis Cardinals continue to march toward the 100 opening day players on their four full-season affiliates. A part of that process is letting players go. This weekend, the organization said goodbye to seven players, six of whom are pitchers.

They are Ronnie Shaban, Will Anderson, Johnny Walter, Daniel SchlerethLuke Harrison and Cody Schumacher. The lone position player released is infielder @allen staton.

This increases the total system-wide releases for the week to 20, with another round expected before the regular season.

Shaban, 27, has been in the Cardinals system since being drafted in the 32nd round in 2012 from Virginia Tech. The right-hander first reached Double-A in 2014 and was The Cardinal Nation’s top Springfield reliever in 2015. But in the three years since reaching the level, he has been unable to earn a spot with Memphis, other than a short three-game cameo in 2016.

Shaban finishes his Cardinals career with a 3.29 ERA over 196 appearances totaling 224 innings. He struck out 197, but walked 73.

Staton, 24, was a free agent signee in June 2015 from North Greenville. The infielder had a strong 2015 in the Appalachian League, posting a .910 OPS in 42 games. The right-handed hitter split 2016 between Palm Beach and Springfield, plating 46 runners in 102 contests with a slash line of .247/.301/.349/.650.

With considerably more infielders than jobs from Springfield down through Peoria, it seems Shaban was crowded out by others.

Anderson, 24, became a Cardinal in the June 2013 draft through his selection as St. Louis’ 26th-rounder. The right-hander excelled in the New York-Penn League in 2014, when he was named a league all-star and was our choice as the Spikes Pitcher of the Year.

After a fast start in 2015, including a weekly Florida State League Pitcher of the Week nod, Anderson lost a year due to a shoulder injury. Upon his return mid-season 2016, Anderson picked up his career in relief in the Gulf Coast League, but struggled in his three appearances back at Palm Beach.

Through his four seasons with the Cardinals, Anderson logged a 3.72 ERA in 47 appearances including 34 starts. He struck out 145 and walked just 30 in 193 2/3 frames.

The contract of Walter, 25, was acquired from New Jersey of the Can-Am League last June. The right-hander was plugged into the Palm Beach rotation for six starts and he also made eight appearances as a starter for Springfield. His results were markedly different, with a 6.24 ERA in the Texas League compared to his 3.58 mark in the FSL.

With the wealth of starting pitchers competing for jobs at Springfield and Palm Beach, it is not surprising that Anderson and Walter were squeezed out.

Schlereth, 30, a former major leaguer, was signed by the Cardinals as a free agent in December. The lefty was throwing 84-85 mph in his last outing, which isn’t enough to cut it. As a result, the left-hander’s Cardinals career ended before it officially began.

Harrison, 24, opened last season with Peoria but was sent back to extended spring training for several weeks in May. Overall, the left-hander logged a 2.42 ERA last season in 44 2/3 innings over 26 games. Harrison struck out 43 against 15 walks in 44 2/3 innings.

The former University of Indiana pitcher was St. Louis’ 35th-round draft pick in the 2015 First-Year Player Draft.

Schumacher, 26, spent most of the last two seasons with Palm Beach, other than one appearance at Springfield in 2015. In 60 career games in the Florida State League, the right-hander has a 3.60 ERA with 87 strikeouts against 32 walks in 104 2/3 innings.

Schumacher joined St. Louis as the organization’s 36-round pick in the 2014 draft from Missouri State.


Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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