Cardinals Again Fly with Frontier

The St. Louis Cardinals have signed eight more draftees, three non-drafted free agents and an independent league player in the last few days, with more likely on the way.

Following their success with now-injured reliever Josh Kinney and recent addition Ian Church, the St. Louis Cardinals have once again ventured into the independent Frontier League for a signing.

On Friday, the Cardinals purchased the contract of Slippery Rock (PA) Sliders right-handed pitcher Pete Parise. The former University of Pittsburgh player is expected to be assigned to the Cardinals' Appalachian League club in Johnson City.

The 6-foot-1, 185 pound right-hander appeared in six games for the Sliders, recording an 0-1 record with a 4.65 ERA and 13 strikeouts with only one walk in 10.1 innings. The 22-year-old finished his career with the Pitt Panthers this spring, where he made 11 relief appearances, compiling a 2-1 record with four saves and a 1.12 ERA. Parise was primarily an outfielder in college, having pitched only six innings prior to the 2007 season.

Eight more draftees sign

In other signings, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports eight more draftees from the Cardinals class of 2007 have come to terms on contacts. That brings the total to 34 of their 52 players selected.

The new signees include second-rounder Jess Todd, a reliever from the Arkansas Razorbacks; third round pick Daniel Descalso, a third baseman from University of California Davis; outfielder Antone DeJesus, their 16th round selection from the University of Kentucky; 25th rounder, left-handed pitcher J.D. Stambaugh from Brigham Young; 33rd rounder Josh Fritsche, a lefty from Oklahoma State U; high school right-hander Mike Blazek (35th round); outfielder Collin Fanning, the 36th round pick, also from BYU and finally their 41st rounder, Ramon Delgado, a right-handed pitcher from Pima Community College.

Cardinals 2007 draft by position

Drafted 52     Signed 34
Outfielders 12       8
Catchers  3       2
Pitchers 23        
    Left 4 3
    Right 19   11
Infielders 14        
    Middle 5 2
    Corner 9   8

Cardinals 2007 draft by class

Drafted 52     Signed 34
High School 8       4
Jr. College 7    
    3rd year 1 1
    2nd year 4 3
    1st year 2 1
College 37        
    Senior 14 11
    Junior 20 13
    Soph. 3   1

Three more free agents join organization

In other signings, the Cardinals have added two undrafted right-handed pitchers, Wayne Daman and Clay Long plus catcher Paul Vasquez.

Long, a junior right-hander, finished his junior season with the NAIA Auburn University Montgomery Senators with a 2.61 ERA and a 9-1 record that included a team high five complete games with two shutouts. He struck out 73 batters and walked just 25 opponents in 76 innings of work.

Long's batterymate, catcher Paul Vasquez, also signed a free agent contract with the Cardinals organization. Vasquez finished his junior season batting .416 and set a new school single-season record for doubles with 25. He struck out just nine times in 254 plate appearances and drove in 63 RBI with 10 home runs. Behind the plate, Vasquez committed just four errors with nine passed balls in 60 games started. He also threw out 23 of the 53 runners who attempted a stolen base against him.

Wayne Daman, Jr. pitched the last four years for the Washington State University Cougars, where he posted a 5-4 record with a 3.28 ERA in this, his senior season. The 22-year-old fanned 55 but walked 32 in 85 innings over 14 starts.

Daman's final college game was a team loss to Daniel Descalso's UC Davis squad. The 6-foot-1, 198 pounder had previously been selected in the 25th round of the 2003 draft by the Kansas City Royals.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at

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