Tulsa was exactly what the doctor ordered this week, as the Cardinal's have taken the first three games in the series to even their record at 7-7 in the second half. They trail Wichita by only one game in the second half race.
There's two games remaining in the series, so come on out to see Cody and the rest of the Cardinals at Hammons Field. Tickets are available by calling (417) 863-2143 or online at www.springfieldcardinals.com.
Cody's roommate, Chris Lambert, will be appearing in the XM Satellite Radio All-Star Futures Game from Detroit's Comerica Park on Sunday. The Futures Game pits the top prospects in minor league baseball in a United States against the world format. The game will be broadcast at 3p.m. central time on ESPN2.
Now to the mailbag:
Question of the Week from Paul Ketcham: Hey Cody: I got a pair of questions for ya so bear with me. First of all, I was wondering whom your favorite player was when you were growing up. Also, out of all the players that you have played with in the minors, who do you think has the brightest future in the majors (other than yourself of course, lol). We have a very limited view of these players. All we really know about them is their stats and I know that never tells the whole story. Thanks Cody.
Without a doubt my favorite player growing up was Cal Ripken, Jr. I just loved the way he went about the game day in and day out. My hitting coach in Palm Beach was Derrick May, a former teammate of Ripken's. Derrick had great things to say about him and how much of a class act he was.
Which teammate has the brightest future in the majors? That's a really hard question to answer because I've played with a lot of players that I think will do well in the major leagues. The one former Cardinal that I think has the best shot is Daric Barton. He just has a natural gift at the plate and a pair of eagle eyes to go with it. Brendan Ryan is also a player that is fun to watch when he's healthy. Thanks for your e-mail Paul and feel free to ask as many as you want.
Bob Banks - Cordova, TN: Greetings, Mr. Haerther. I'm enjoying your column today because of the "free" invitation Brian posted. Actually, their service's coverage of the Cardinals is worth far more than the subscription fee. But if I subscribed, I'd feel compelled to spend more time there than my wife or employer would like.
I'm looking forward to seeing you here in Memphis. You probably have already heard about Autozone Park. I think you'll enjoy it. The fans are good, I think. At least they are better than our basketball fans and the park atmosphere really helps.
I haven't checked to see when or if you'll be back to Little Rock but hope to see Springfield play there this summer. It is only 127 miles from Memphis and I've got a good friend with season tickets who is always inviting me to join him. If you go there again, be sure to take a note of the National Guard Armory Building that is behind the leftfield fence. In an exhibition game in the Spring of 1986, Jack Clark hit a ball of Dan Quisenberry's that landed at the back of the roof. That field is where I saw my first pro game, which feature a skinny young pitcher named Jim Bunning. It's also where I got a picture made with Stan Musial. I'm sorry the park hasn't been as kind to you so far. If you make another trip there, maybe you'll have better fortune.
Your comments are thoughtful and interesting. You aren't the only one who hated to see Barton leave. I've been angry over LaRuncan's failure to develop Danny Haren for a couple of years now and seeing him leave with Barton was agonizing.
Good luck to you and your teammates. Thanks to the internet, I check your box scores before going to bed almost every night. I hope to see many of you here and in St. Louis.
Thanks for the e-mail Bob. In the beginning of August we return to Little Rock! Looking forward to seeing you there. Thank you once again for your letter and I've only heard awesome things about Autozone Park.
Brent Schade: How would you rate yourself defensively in the outfield? I know you were drafted as a third baseman, did you have any initial problems with switching to the outfield?
It was pretty difficult for me to go from third to the outfield in the middle of my first season in Johnson City. Since then I have been working really hard to learn all the different angles you can take to the ball and what to do in different situations. It's been tough, but I think I'm getting better everyday that I work at it. When I first started playing outfield and the ball was hit to me, all the coaches would hold their breath. Now I think the coaching staff feels a little bit more comfortable when they put me in the outfield. I still have a lot to learn, especially on ball that goes straight over my head. I know that I will continue to work really hard in the outfield because that's one of my weaker points in my game. Thanks again for your question this week Brent.
Jarrod Lutz: Hi Cody. I worked at the Peoria Chiefs last year, as a Ball Park Frank, and was wondering if you knew anything about the condition of Sal Frisella? I remember him being a really funny guy and pretty good designated hitter, but that play at the plate did a gruesome thing to his leg. How is he, do you know?
Jarrod thanks for you concern about Sal. Sal is an awesome guy and an even better teammate. I believe the Cardinals in the middle of May released Sal. I talk to him about every other week and he is now working in St. Louis giving hitting lessons.
If you have questions that you would like Cody to answer next week, you can send them to Codyscorner@hotmail.com. If your question is selected as the "Question of the Week" at Cody's Corner, your name will be entered into the drawing October 2nd for a free one year-premium subscription to the Birdhouse.
Cody's Corner is weekly column appearing only at the Birdhouse at www.thestlcardinals.com.