This Week in the Minors – June 30 - AAA/AA

One of our most popular features with the St. Louis Cardinals organization's minor leaguers' stats and news from the week past. This report focuses on the Memphis Redbirds (Triple-A) and Springfield Cardinals (Double-A).

This Week in the Minors - AAA and AA

June 30, 2006

Overall, it was a fairly quiet week at both Triple-A and Double-A. Memphis went from eighteen-under to fifteen-under .500 and pulled out of last place. This week finds them playing an important four-game road series against first-place Nashville. Those results are in and will be discussed more in next week's report. Springfield had the first three days of the week off due to the Texas League All-Star break then stumbled out of the second half by winning only one of their first four games. They found themselves in a tie for third place at week's end which is another way of saying that they were basically dead last. There are only four teams in their division.


AAA – Memphis Redbirds
League Affiliation - sixteen-team Pacific Coast League, four-team America North division
Overall Record – 30 - 45
Weekly Record – 5 - 2
Current Standing – Third, eleven games behind the Nashville Sounds (Milwaukee)

The Roster

Transactions – 06/19/06 - 2B Junior Spivey placed on the 7-day disabled list, C Michel Hernandez activated from the 7-day disabled list; 06/21/06 - OF Shaun Boyd, LHR Carmen Cali, 3B Travis Hanson: optioned to Double-A Springfield, RHR Rich Scalamandre, 3B Rico Washington: called up from Double-A Springfield, 1B Brian Daubach activated from the disabled list; 06/21/06 - RHS Rhett Parrott activated from the disabled list and assigned to short-season A State College for rehabilitation; 06/22/06 - RHS Anthony Reyes re-called to St. Louis, OF/1B Chris Duncan optioned from St. Louis; 06/23/06 - RHR John Riedling given his unconditional release, OF Brian Martin placed on the 7-day disabled list (left hamstring), INF Junior Spivey, RHS John Webb: activated from the 7-day disabled list; 06/24/06 - INF Bo Hart signed to a minor league contract and will be activated on Sunday, June 25th, C Michel Hernandez placed on the 7-day disabled list, retroactive to the 22nd (recurrance of strained oblique)

On the DL front – RHP Alan Benes (right shoulder tendonitis), C Michel Hernandez (recurrence of prior strained oblique injury), OF Brian Martin (left hamstring)

Current Week Team Batting – .236/.293/.389/.682
Cumulative Team Batting – .240/.313/.363/.676, last in the league, by OPS

Current Rotation*Randy Leek, Chris Narveson, Travis Smith, Dennis Tankersley, John Webb
Current Week Pitching Stats – Rotation - 2.95 ERA and 1.26 WHIP: 13 earned runs, 35 hits and 15 walks in 39.2 innings pitched

Current Bullpen* – Carmen Cali, Andy Cavazos, Brian Falkenborg, Josh Kinney, Ober Moreno, Matt Perisho, Rich Scalamandre
Current Week Pitching Stats – Bullpen - 1.85 ERA and 1.07 WHIP: 5 earned runs, 17 hits and 9 walks in 24.1 innings pitched
Cumulative Pitching – 4.13 ERA and 1.38 WHIP, seventh in the league, by WHIP
*Those pitchers contributing to the current stats. Pitcher may appear in both rotation and bullpen.

Who's Pitchin' Hot – RHR Josh Kinney
In a nod to him being named as the Redbirds' sole representative to the Pacific Coast League's All-Star game on July 12th, Kinney gets the ‘Hot' award this week. It is the fourth time this season that Kinney has received this notice. Kinney also gets added to the ‘Prospect Watch' of which Memphis has a dearth of legitimate candidates. But relievers can end up contributing to the major league squad at an older age than do starters, ref: Al Reyes, and Kinney's 2006 performance deserves watching. He held opposing batters to a measly .105 average in six and two-thirds innings over four appearances. Kinney inherited three runners this week and none scored. Overall, he has inherited twenty base runners this season with only four scoring off him. His overall control is worsening somewhat from walking 2.4 batters every nine innings in mid-May to 3.6 through June 25th.

Who's Pitchin' Not – LHR Carmen Cali
Cali absorbed one of the two losses that Memphis had this week. While he gave up only one hit, he sabotaged himself by hitting the first batter he faced and then walking the third batter he faced. Batter number five got the 2-out hit to drive in two runs and break a 1-1 10th-inning tie. That was his sole appearance before being sent to Springfield on the 21st.

Who's Hittin' Hot – CF Skip Schumaker
Schumaker appears to have his hitting stroke back after a month of seriously sub-par offensive performance. This week he went .318/.333/.455/.788, 7-for-22 in seven games with one home run, four runs scored, three runs batted in, two strikeouts and one error. He still does not show much pop with his bat, only one of his seven hits for the week was for extra bases but his combination of four runs scored with three runs driven in as a singles hitter leads the team. (FWIW).

Who's Hittin' Not – SS John Nelson
Nelson goes from ‘Hot' to ‘Not' in one report. Nelson went .182/.296/.182/.478, 4-for-22 in seven games with three runs scored, two runs batted in, four walks, nine strikeouts and one error. Nelson' K/AB rate for the past two-week period had improved to 1:4 ratio but this week he slipped back down to striking out once every two and one-third at bats. It should be pointed out, however, that three hits per week separate the ‘Hot' from the ‘Not' this week.

Of Note – Offense/Defense
While Derek Wathan's batting average and on-base percentage are down a bit this week from the last report (.276 vs. .317 average, .300 vs. .349 on-base percentage) but his slugging has remained pretty close (.655 vs. .659) for a .955 OPS this week.
Brian Daubach continues to produce for the Redbirds. Although he hit only .250 this week, he got on base at a .400 clip, thanks to two walks and two hit-by-pitches, in twenty plate appearances. He notched a 1.025 OPS with half of his four hits coming via the long ball.

Of Note – Pitching
John Riedling was released on June 23rd to make room on the roster for starter John Webb's return from the disabled list. According to the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Riedling became expendable due to the quality work being put in by Josh Kinney and Andy Cavazos and their higher projected upsides, along with the just arrived Rich Scalamandre.
A name that was left off last week's "What Relievers Can Possibly Help The Big Club" was Andy Cavazos. Cavazos has done very well in his month plus since coming up Springfield. He is holding opposing batters to a .188 batting average, seventy-four batters faced, in nineteen and one-third innings pitched over fourteen game appearances. His control has been phenomenal with only two free passes allowed or less than one every nine innings. Cavazos has a 0.78 WHIP. However, at this point he likely needs to prove himself at this level over a longer period of time before he will become a serious candidate for promotion .

Prospect Watch
Andy Cavazos – 4 G, 0 GS, 0-0, 0 SV, 5.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 HR, 0 HB, 0 BB, 3 SO, 0.00 ERA, 0.56 WHIP, .188 BAA
Chris Duncan - .333/.333/.333/.666, 3-for-9 in three games, 0 R, 1 RBI, 0 BB, 5 SO,
Josh Kinney – 4 G, 0 GS, 0-0, 0 SV, 6.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 HR, 2 HB, 5 BB, 9 SO, 0.00 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 1.8:1 K/BB, .105 BAA
Brian Martin - .400/.400/.700/1.100, 4-for-10 in four games, 1 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, 0 BB, 1 SO, very nice week cut short by a trip to the DL
Chris Narveson – 2 G, 2 GS, 0 CG, 1-1, 9 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 1 HR, 1 HB, 5 BB, 7 SO, 5.00 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 1.4:1 K/BB, .206 BAA
Anthony Reyes – did not pitch as this level


AA – Springfield Cardinals
League Affiliation - eight-team Texas League, four-team East division
Second-Half Record – 1 - 3
Overall Record – 40 - 32
Weekly Record – 1 - 3
Current Standing – tied for third with the Arkansas Travelers (LAA), three games behind the Wichita Wranglers (Kansas City)

The Roster

Transactions – 06/21/06 - OF Shaun Boyd, LHR Carmen Cali, 3B Travis Hanson: optioned from Triple-A Memphis, RHR Rich Scalamandre, 3B Rico Washington: called up to Triple-A Memphis; 06/21/06 - DH Josh Pressley given his unconditional release; 06/23/06 - RHS Blake Hawksworth called up from A-Advanced Palm Beach, LHS Rich Rundles traded to the New York Mets for future considerations;

On the DL front – C Iker Franco (right elbow tendonitis), SS Brendan Ryan (left wrist)

Current Week Team Batting – .280/.316/.371/.686 with ten errors committed
Cumulative Team Batting – .264/.338/.419/.757, fifth in the league, by OPS

Current Rotation*Chris Lambert, Mike Parisi, Stuart Pomeranz, Rich Rundles
Current Week Pitching Stats – Rotation - 8.71 ERA and 1.99 WHIP: 20 earned runs, 33 hits and 8 walks in 20.2 innings pitched

Current Bullpen* – Carmen Cali, Cory Doyne, Justin Garza, Kevin Ool, Chris Russ, Mark Worrell
Current Week Pitching Stats – Bullpen - 3.65 ERA and 0.81 WHIP: 5 earned runs, 8 hits and 2 walks in 12.1 innings pitched
Cumulative Pitching – 4.15 ERA and 1.41 WHIP, fifth in the league, by WHIP
*Those pitchers contributing to the current stats. Pitcher may appear in both rotation and bullpen.

Who's Pitchin' Hot – No single pitcher stands out
The rotation universally stank while the bullpen did not pitch enough for a specific pitcher to be noticed.

Who's Pitchin' Not – The rotation
Besides Jordan Pals, who got a free pass because he did not pitch this week, the balance of the rotation simply stank this week. Chris Lambert was the only starter to win this week, despite his 9.54 ERA, 1.77 WHIP and .320 BAA, solely because Springfield's offense bludgeoned the opposition into submission. Rich Rundles, in his last start with the Cardinals, compiled a 9.00 ERA, 2.20 WHIP and a whopping .435 BAA. That was the worst start made by the rotation.

Who's Hittin' Hot – OF Shaun Boyd
Boyd got off to a very good start after his demotion from Memphis by going .375/.421/.438/.859, 6-for-16 in four games. He scored five runs and drove in another while playing centerfield during Reid Gorecki's recovery from a bruised right heel. (Gorecki's injury was mentioned in last week's report. He eventually was placed on the disabled list on June 27th, retroactive to June 19th.) Despite Boyd's performance this week, he did not crack the ‘Prospect Watch' due to a higher level of competition in Springfield.

Who's Hittin' Not – SS Mike McCoy
McCoy hit a paltry .200/.294/.200/.494, 3-for-15 in four games, with two runs scored, no runs batted in, one walk, three strikeouts and two errors. McCoy continues to hold down Brendan Ryan's shortstop slot during the latter's extended absence.

Of Note – Offense/Defense
Both Jarrett Hoffpauir and Nick Stavinoha appeared to have benefited from the three-day Texas League All-Star break. Hoffpauir went .194/.256/.222/.479, 7-for-36 in eleven games over the two weeks prior to the break but has come out smokin' afterwards. He missed ‘Hot' honors due to the more limited numbers of at bats.
Nick Stavinoha has shown gradual improvement since coming off the disabled list on May 17th. After going .364/.375/.545/.920 in his first five post-DL games, Stavinoha's next two-week numbers were:
05/22 – 06/04/06 - .071/.130/.095/.226, 3-for-42 in twelve games
06/05 – 06/18/06 - .263/.317/.263/.580, 10-for-38 in eleven games
This week he looked more like his ‘normal' self, see the ‘Prospect Watch'. Here is hoping he keeps it up.
Shaun Boyd ‘s arrival from Memphis gives Springfield five outfielders for three starting jobs. Reid Gorecki's current stint on the disabled list eases the pressure a bit for now. But manager Chris Maloney will have his hands full finding enough playing time for Boyd, Evans, Gorecki, Haerther and Stavinoha.

Of Note – Pitching
You can call the Springfield rotation the ‘Not Ready for Memphis Players', if this four-game span is any indication. Yes, it is only four games and the team began the second-half on the road which has been a big bugaboo for them this season. But none of the rotation showed much sign of being ready for the next step up. Chris Lambert, Stuart Pomeranz and Mike Parisi's weekly lines are all listed in the ‘Prospect Watch'. Over in the bullpen, things look a bit better, most likely because such a small time-span is covered this week. Cory Doyne, Kevin Ool and Mark Worrell were all unscored upon in their one appearance. Both Justin Garza and Chris Russ made two appearances and allowed at least a run each. However, each has a sub-1.00 WHIP and sub.200 batting average against. Carmen Cali's return to Springfield was less than wonderful. He compiled a 2.20 WHIP and .417 BAA in two innings and two appearances. Again, a small time-span.

Prospect Watch - Hitting
Terry Evans - .294/.294/.529/.824, 5-for-17 in four games, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 R, 4 RBI, 0 BB, 6 SO, 0 SB, 1 CS, 0 E
Reid Gorecki – did not play, subsequently placed on the disabled list
Cody Haerther - .313/.313/.438/.750, 5-for-16 in four games, 2 2B, 1 R, 2 RBI, 0 BB, 3 SO, 0 E
Travis Hanson - .250/.308/.250/. , 3-for-12 in three games, 1 R, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 4 SO, 1 E
Jarrett Hoffpauir - .455/.500/.545/1.045, 5-for-11 in three games, 1 2B, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SO, 0 E
Nick Stavinoha - .313/.313/.500/.813, 5-for-16 in four games, 1 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, 0 BB, 3 SO, 0 E

Prospect Watch - Pitching
Blake Hawksworth – promoted to Springfield on June 23rd but did before the week's end
Chris Lambert – 1 G, 1 GS, 0 CG, 1-0, 5.2 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 6 ER, 1 HR, 0 HB, 2 BB, 3 SO, 9.54 ERA, 1.77 WHIP, 1.5:1 K/BB, .320 BAA
Mike Parisi – 1 G, 1 GS, 0 CG, 0-1, 5 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 1 HR, 0 HB, 3 BB, 2 SO, 9.00 ERA, 2.00 WHIP, 0.67 K/BB, .333 BAA
Stuart Pomeranz – 1 G, 1 GS, 0 CG, 0-1, 5 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 1 HR, 0 HB, 2 BB, 2 SO, 7.20 ERA, 2.00 WHIP, 1:1 K/BB, .381 BAA
Mark Worrell – 1 G, 0 GS, 0-0, 0 SV, 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 HR, 0 HB, 0 BB 0 SO, 0.00 WHIP, .000 BAA

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