For other players, it has been over three long months on the back fields of Jupiter, whether working to improve their game, recovering from injury or a dose of each. These ballplayers were joined by a major influx of the Cardinals best and brightest prospects from their academies in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela.
A handful of them were sent out during the last two months as reinforcements were needed on the full-season teams, but most continued on, competing in extended spring training.
Now, this week, as EST evolved into mini-camp, a new group of players are showing up. These are the first signees from last week's First-Year Player Draft. Initially half, 26 of the 52 Cardinals draftees, had settled and a number of them arrived in mini-camp. (Eight more have signed since, including a number of free agents.)
With the coaching staffs of the full-season clubs watching, this ever-changing player mix was sorted into three groups – the three short-season club rosters.
These three teams' seasons get underway next Tuesday and Wednesday, including the initial rookie-level Gulf Coast League Cardinals club, added over the winter. The other two teams are the Johnson City Cardinals of the Appalachian League (Rookie) and the Batavia Muckdogs of the New York-Penn League. The Cardinals moved their short-season Class A affiliate to Batavia from State College, PA following the 2006 season.
As a refresher, here are these clubs' coaching staffs in 2007:
|Club||Manager||Pitching Coach||Hitting Coach||Trainer|
|Batavia (A)||Mark DeJohn*||Al Holland^||Mike Shildt*||Manabu Kuwazuru*|
|Johnson City (R)||Joe Almaraz^||Sid Monge^||Brian Puchalski^|
|GCL Cardinals (R)||Enrique Brito||Dennis Martinez|
|^ Returning / new assignment|
Now, here are the working rosters of the three clubs. Recognize there could still be changes between now and the opening of the season due to more players signing, injuries and the like. But, with the Johnson City and Batavia teams now en route to their cities, these adjustments will likely be minor.
Cardinals Director of Minor League Operations John Vuch explains the organization's general approach in assigning players to teams.
"Most of the international/high school draftees go to the GCL, with the more advanced ones assigned to Johnson City, although there are a few exceptions based on positional need. The more advanced college players generally wind up at Batavia, with the overflow going to Johnson City – again with some exceptions due to positional logjams," Vuch said.
|Batavia||Johnson City||GCL Cardinals|
|Catchers||Gonzalez, Steve||Mulligan, Casey||Castro, Ivan|
|Derba, Nicholas||Sanzillo, Robert||DeLaCruz, Luis|
|Hill, Steven D.||Vazquez, Paul||Espinosa, Roberto|
|Carpenter, David - DL||Bussiere, Garrett - DL|
|Pitchers||Mortensen, Clayton||Peralta, Senger (L)||Hooker, James|
|Todd, Jess||North, Matt||Cardenas, Hector (L)|
|Wilson, Josh||Diapoules, Mark||Gonzalez, Carlos|
|Bilardello, Davis (L)||Leach, Tyler||Gonzalez, Rainyer|
|Garner, Brandon||Mendoza, Wladimir||Marquez, Fabian|
|Dew, Josh||Mayes, LaCurtis||Martinez, Gustavo|
|Daman, Wayne||Javier, Omar||Delgado, Ramon|
|Gonzalez, Marco||Mateo, Jose||Rosales, Andres|
|Long, Clayton||Arredondo, Jose||Samuel, Francisco|
|Collier, Logan||Additon, Nick||Sanchez, Eduardo|
|Fritsche, Joshua||Gonzalez, Dylan||Lugo, Rigoberto|
|Eager, Thomas||Fick, Chuckie||Spade, Matthew (L)|
|Stambaugh, Jonathan||Broderick, Brian||Blazek, Michael|
|Kopp, David||Hill, Steven A.||Ortiz, Pablo|
|Hodinka, Ryan (L) - DL||Bakey, Kris - DL||Pichardo, Joel - DL|
|Rada, Jose - DL|
|1B||Brown, Andrew||Pelt, Charlie||Conde, Edwin|
|Thomas, Scott - DL|
|Infielders||Marmol, Oliver||Bolivar, Domnit||Ruiz, Romulo|
|Cartie, Bryan||Garcia, Jose G.||Toribio, Guillermo|
|Oeder, Ross||Arburr, Matt||Cruz, Arnoldi|
|Groff, Will||Folli, Mike||Hiraldo, Braulio|
|Descalso, Daniel||Vera, Nicholas|
|Puello, Melvin - DL|
|Outfielders||DeJesus, Antonio||Mitchell, Travis||Parejo, Frederick|
|Marquez, Roberto||Edwards, Jon||Lara, Edgar|
|Roberson, Justin||Riportella, Beau||Martinez, Jairo|
|Fanning, Collin||Chambers, Adron||Hage, Joey|
|Buck, Brian||Schoenenberg, Carlos|
|Pujols, Wil||Ingram, D'Marcus|
|Rivera, Francisco - DL|
Brian Walton can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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