2006 Ranking: 22
School: University of California-Santa Barbara
Cardinal: Selected in the fifth round of the June, 2001 First-Year Player
Draft. Received a $155,000 signing bonus. 2006 AVG. AB H HR RBI R SB BB K OBP. SLG OPS St. Louis .185 54 10 1 2 3 2 5 6 .513
Jason Scott (NR): I'm not going to lie. The thought never crossed my mind as I was compiling my top 40 prospect list that Schumaker was still eligible. While he has exceeded the forty-five days of Major League service time, spending time with the Cardinals each of the past two seasons, he is still 52 at-bats short of the minimum requirement of 130 to be considered a rookie/prospect.
That being said, Schumaker would have no doubt at least been on my list. While he has yet to do very much hitting-wise at the major league level, his defense is unmistakable, and his arm has annually been rated as among the best in the organization. I could see him as a So Taguchi-type player off the bench, maybe as early as this season.
Leonda Markee (30): Schumaker had a very good 2006 season at Memphis and my ranking of him at 30 is based on his imminent ability to help the big club in St. Louis far more than it is on any projected upside. With his defensive prowess, I am one of those that sees Schumaker as a lefty-hitting So Taguchi. I expect Skip to very much be in the mix for a bench spot on the 2007 St. Louis team and that gives him value.
Ray Mileur (NR): Dropping all the way down in the rankings to #38 from #22 last season, Schumaker fell faster and farther than anyone else in our rankings this year. The 5'10" 175 pound left-handed hitting outfielder is still on the Cardinals 40-man roster, and he hit .185 playing in 28 games for St. Louis last season.
Despite the drop in our annual rankings, Schumaker had what he considered to be his best season ever, referring to him helping Team USA qualify for the 2008 Olympics in the tournament that was held in Cuba. Schumaker went 2-for-4 with a run scored in the final game, of an 8-5 win over the host country, finishing the tournament hitting .405 (15-for-37) with six walks and 15 runs scored.
Schumaker, a left-handed hitter with a game a little too similar to So Taguchi's will see action as a defensive replacement and pinch-hitter if he makes the club's 25 man roster out of spring training.Personally I would hope there would be a place on the Cardinals bench for Schumaker in '07. Brian Walton (29): Because he is so close to the majors, perhaps as close as a non-tender to So Taguchi, I ranked Schumaker higher than my peers, two of whom left Skip off their lists altogether. He may be the best outfielder (range and arm) in the system, and those skills are valued by the organization. Not to mention the fact that Schumaker has the scrappiness that Cardinals fans love so much.
Before he could be more than a fifth outfielder, however, Schumaker needs to demonstrate a higher propensity to get on base. In his second season at Memphis, he was OK, batting .306 with an OBP of .348. But, in his combined 78 major league at-bats, Schumaker is barely batting .200 with a .271 OBP.
STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking), NR = Not RatedTo see our entire list of 40 prospects as they are unveiled daily, click here.
© 2006 stlcardinals.scout.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed.