After seven weeks of play in the 2008 Venezuelan Summer League, the VSL Cardinals rookie-level club has a 19-18-2 record, in fourth, 6.5 games out of first place in the eight-team league. Alberto Rivero and Deimer Bier are among the standouts.
The Venezuelan Summer League
Cardinals began their seventh week of the season with a two-game losing streak,
coming after losing a game and ending another game in a tie last week. So it was
not a great ending and start to the week.
The team did
rebound to claim the last two contests of the week before rain postponed their
fifth game. During this period of
the report, they split their schedule 2-2.
The Cardinals record now sits at 19-18-2 record. They slipped to 6.5
games out of first, but leaped to 4th place overall in the league
The Cardinals began the week with
a 4-3 loss to the Astros. The
Astros only had four hits in the game, but free passes came back to bite the
Cardinals. The pitching walked
seven and one error contributed to one run. The next game was vs. the Phillies. The Cardinals were hammered, 12-4. The team had 10 hits but couldn't get
runs across the plate and it doesn't help when the pitching staff is leaving the
ball on a tee for the other team.
The Phillies had 16 hits including one grand slam, one solo home run, and
a couple of doubles.
The Cardinals then would take on
the Mariners at their field and get retribution for the past loss. A short,
quick outing by the starter, but the bullpen picked it up and closed the game
out. The Cardinals won the game
10-5, scoring six in the top of the 10th inning. The Tigers would come to town after an
unusual scheduled off-day. The
Cards received great pitching from their starter and two bullpen arms held the
Tigers to just one run and five hits.
The Cardinals scattered ten hits en route to a 3-1 win. The final game vs. the Mets in this
period was cancelled due to weather and will be made up as a doubleheader on
Alberto Rivero is carrying a six-game hitting
streak into this next week. The
19-year old outfielder went 5-for-13 (.313) with one double, three RBIs, and two
strikeouts on the week. With the
recent slump of Gerardo Mannbel, Rivero has emerged as the feared hitter of the
team. In the June 27 game, Rivero
collected his 4th double of the season and also knocking in the game
clinching run for the Cardinals' 3-1 win over the Tigers. He currently leads the team with three
triples and overtook Mannbel for the RBI lead with 24.
Jose Cortez has been hitting the ball very
well lately. On the week, the
19-year-old outfielder went 8-for-15 (.533) with one double, three RBIs, three
runs, and only one strike out. The
right-handed hitter has a three-game hitting streak and collected a season high
five hits and three RBIs on June 25 in a 10-5 loss to the Mariners. In his last ten games Cortez is hitting
.417 with four doubles, four RBIs, one walk, six runs, one stolen base, and six
strike outs. He currently ranks
2nd on the team with six doubles.
Billy Bolivar showed a little spark this
week. The 20-year old utility
infielder went 5-for-15 (.313) and collected his first two doubles and first two
RBIs of the season. The
right-handed hitter also scored four runs, was walked once, stole a base, and
struck out once. On June 27 the
3rd year VSL participant had a three hit game with a double and a
Deimer Bier made one start during the week,
on June 27. The 17-year old
right-hander pitched five innings, allowing four hits, only one run, no walks,
and striking out a personal career high nine. The Venezuelan pitcher was just signed
over the fall/winter and has become quite an ace for the Cardinals staff. He dropped his ERA to 3.03 on the season
and holds a 2-1 record. In two of
his last three starts, he struck out more than five and has only walked a total
of seven over 35.2 innings.
Moises Colorado is making his way back toward the
rotation. The 18-year old
left-hander made two relief appearances this week. On June 23 vs. the Astros, he only
pitched 2/3 of an inning, letting one of his two inherited runners score. The next came June 25 in relief of
Javier Avendano, who only lasted 2 innings. The Mariners got only one hit and two
walks and struck out four times in Colorado's five innings. Colorado is only a month removed from the
rotation, and hasn't allowed an earned run since his return from his unexplained
absence (8.2 innings). Could we see
him return to the rotation in the next week?
Gerardo Mannbel has hit the wall or I should say
slump. The 18-year old infielder
went 2-for-16 (.125) with three RBIs, two runs, and two stolen bases on the
week. Mannbel once was hitting the
ball all over the park for hits, but now can't get a break. In his last ten games, he's hitting .211
with only two doubles and three RBIs.
Let's all hope he can snap out of it here pretty soon. His season average has now dropped to
.307 but he still leads the team with four home runs, seven doubles, and six
Kaizer Inojoza is not having a great season. The 17-year old outfielder has only one
hit and has struck out four times on the season in a limited nine at-bats. The right-handed hitter is being used
sparingly in an off the bench role.
He's made only eight appearances this season. Not really catching any attention to get
any more playing time.
Jackson Solarte was once again shelled in his
only relief appearance of the week.
The 17-year old right-hander pitched on June 24 allowing six hits, three
(earned) runs, one wild pitch, and striking out one over two innings. Since joining the VSL squad, he has
allowed ten hits, seven earned runs, two walks, and has struck out two over 3.2
innings. Solarte has a team-worst
Hector Corpas made his only start this week on
June 24 as the Cardinals lost 12-4 to the Phillies. The 18-year old right-hander lasted four
innings giving up seven hits, six (earned) runs, two walks, one wild pitch two
home runs(one grand slam), and striking out two. Corpas was added to the rotation when
Colorado left for a short time and could be
looking to head back to bullpen if his starts don't improve and Colorado continues to
shine. His ERA sits at 5.76 and he
has four losses, worst among the current starting rotation. Corpas does have a team-high four
Gregorio Ramos is another fall/winter signee by
the St. Louis Cardinals out of Venezuela. The 18-year old right however has been
struggling this season. He made one
relief appearance this week allowing one hit, two runs (one earned), and three
walks in one inning on June 24 vs. the Phillies. For the season, Ramos has walked 11 and
struck out five over 6.1 innings.
Missing in Action and a
Cristofher Dumont has not played since June 16. This came before the St. Louis Cardinals
announced he would be joining the Rookie-Level GCL Cardinals squad for their
2008 season. Still we wait for this
move to be made. On the 2008
season, Dumont is hitting .198 with one double, three home runs, 12 RBIs, eight
walks, and 27 strike outs in 91 at-bats.
Ruben Alvarado made his return this week. The 16-year old reliever who hadn't been
seen in over a month made his return on June 24. The 2007 fall/winter signee pitched two
innings of relief allowing two hits, one (earned) run, and striking out two in
the Cardinals 12-4 loss to the Phillies.
The Cardinals hitting is pretty
much staying pat as it has over the entire 2008 season. The team batting average did rise from
.241 to .246 this past week. The
team pitching took a couple of hits and the team ERA rose from 3.36 to 3.48.
Gerardo Mannbel is 7th with 43 hits,
tied for 7th with four home runs, 9th with 64 total bases,
10th with 18 walks, 10th with a .406 OBP, and
10th with a .863 OPS.
Alberto Rivero is tied for 3rd with
three triples and tied for 7th with 24 RBIs
Cristofher Dumont is tied for 10th with
three home runs.
Hector Corpas is tied for 5th with
David Brito is tied for 5th with
Yonathan Gonzalez is tied for 8th with
three wins, 3rd with six saves, and tied for 1st with 17
Moises Colorado is 4th with 36
Geney Rios is tied for 5th with
Deimer Bier is 8th with a 1.09
June 30: Pirates (26-12,
July 1: @ Rays (18-19, 7th
July 2: Astros (19-20, 5th
July 3: @ Phillies (20-16,
July 4: Mariners (22-16,
July 5: @ Tigers (8-30,
© 2008 stlcardinals.scout.com. All
rights reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or