Cards Arizona Fall Series: Daniel Descalso

An exclusive interview with Olympic gold medal-winning second baseman Daniel Descalso.

2009 was a season of ups and downs and ups and downs for Daniel Descalso.

Coming off his Team USA gold medal-winning performance, he finished his Arizona Fall League campaign a line of .220/.313/.268. That has to be considered a disappointment. The second baseman had a enjoyed tremendous start to the 2009 season with Springfield before slowing down considerably in his first taste of Triple-A.

The 23-year-old was our Cardinal Nation Springfield Cardinals Player of the Year for 2009 and was named a Topps Double-A All-Star. Descalso was selected to the West Division roster for the Arizona Fall League's all-star game, called the Rising Stars Showcase, though he did not appear in the game.

Manager Andre David of the Surprise Rafters of the Arizona Fall League saw Descalso as an every day player. He offers a fresh perspective coming from the Kansas City Royals system.

Of the four Cardinals position players that were competing in the AFL, David's comments about the second baseman may have been the most spirited, both offensively and defensively. It certainly offers some encouragement to those of us concerned about Descalso's dropoff since joining Memphis mid-season.

"For me, in all areas, Descalso has really improved," David explained. "His anticipation on defense, his swing action has been unbelievable. He doesn't really miss his pitch – he really focuses on hunting it out. He can draw a walk if you need him to. He is very smart and has good instincts."

Overall, Descalso played in 21 games going 18-for-82 with four doubles, three RBIs, 22 total bases, 11 runs, 11 walks, one stolen base, ten strikeouts and one error.

Exclusive for Cardinal Nation subscribers: In an audio interview, Descalso discusses his Team USA stint, the departure of Jarrett Hoffpauir, his AFL season as well as his plans for 2010.


TCN has you covered!

As every year, The Cardinal Nation,, is your leader in independent first-hand reporting on and from the Arizona Fall League. Keep checking back for daily for new reports on the Cardinals prospects that were playing for the Surprise Rafters this fall.

Other interviews in this series
Jeff Luhnow (four-part)
Bryan Anderson
Mike Parisi
Daryl Jones
Gary Daley Jr.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog.

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