The Cardinal Nation's No. 14 prospect, Eliezer Alvarez, has been one of the better hitters in the organization over the past year, earning the chance to jump over High-A Palm Beach and open his 2017 campaign with Double-A Springfield.
On Monday night, Alvarez' development took a pause, as he suffered a serious leg injury after grounding out to first base in the eighth inning against the Tulsa Drillers (LAD).
According to a source, the 22-year old was taken directly to the hospital and on Tuesday, was spotted needing a boot and crutches to walk.
Pending release of x-ray results, the second baseman may have broken a foot, and if so, will probably miss extensive time.
Entering his second full season and sixth year overall with the Cardinals organization, Alvarez is slashing .231/.324/.341 through 27 games (91 at-bats) for the Springbirds this season. The left-handed hitter has slugged two homers while driving in nine runs.
The left-handed hitter has a 34-to-10 strikeout to walk ratio against Texas League pitching.
Diekroeger lands in Springfield
In the aftermath of Alvarez’s injury, Palm Beach infielder Danny Diekroeger was promoted to Springfield from Palm Beach to replace him on the active roster.
Diekroeger had an injury-riddled 2016 including two full months on the disabled list due to a broken wrist. Healthy now, the 24-year old has a .245/.294/.306 slash line with seven RBI over 28 games (98 at-bats) for the Beach Birds of the Florida State League this year.
Diekroeger, who can play second and third, will be making his Texas League debut with the Cardinals.
Bautista filling in at Palm Beach
Jumping the fence from extended spring training in Jupiter is outfielder Ricardo Bautista, who was listed on the Low-A (short-season) State College roster. Now he is the newest member of Palm Beach, in the corresponding move for Diekroeger’s promotion.
The 21-year old Puerto Rican has yet to appear in any official action this year after batting .249/.319/.361 with the Spikes last year through 65 games.
Update: Gant to Memphis
RIght-handed pitcher John Gant, out since spring training with a groin injury, has been removed from St. Louis' 10-day disabled list and optioned to Triple-A Memphis. The off-season acquisition from Atlanta in the Jaime Garcia deal will make his official Cardinals system debut in a start for the Redbirds on Wednesday night.
With the Redbirds roster down one player since Daniel Poncedeleon's injury on the 10th, no other move to add Gant is required. The latter not only takes Poncedeleon's roster spot, but also his place in the rotation.
Update: Two returning to St. Louis, one to wait
General manager John Mozeliak stated on Tuesday that both outfielder Stephen Piscotty and infielder Jhonny Peralta are scheduled to come off the 10-day disabled list on Friday. However, left-hander Tyler Lyons will make at least one more rehab start before his return to St. Louis, as reported by MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch.
Piscotty joined Springfield on Tuesday while Peralta is three games into his second rehab, with Memphis. Lyons has made one start with Peoria and one with Memphis to date in his recovery. Assuming he remains on a starter's routine, Lyons' next turn should be on Saturday in a location to be announced.
Of course, what is unclear is which three players will be leaving St. Louis' roster when the rehabbing trio are deemed ready. Red hot outfielders Tommy Pham and Magneuris Sierra and reliever Sam Tuivailala are most likely since they have remaining minor league options.
Follow Derek Shore on Twitter @D_Shore23.
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