Quad Cities Shuffles Relief Deck

The St. Louis Cardinals' Midwest League affiliate makes a pair of moves to help their bullpen.

The St. Louis Cardinals made two changes to the beleaguered bullpen of the Class A Quad Cities River Bandits on Saturday. It was a group of five relievers in which only one had an ERA under seven.

Right-handed pitchers LaCurtis Mayes and Chris Corrigan have been reassigned to extended spring training camp in Jupiter, Florida. In their places, right-handers Jason Novak and Justin Smith are joining Quad Cities from extended spring training.

Corrigan pitched on Friday night, taking over in the seventh. He allowed two runs, one earned while failing to get an out in a game that Quad Cities would eventually win in extra innings. Overall, opposing batters are hitting .378 against the 22-year-old. Corrigan has allowed 11 runs, seven earned, in 7 2/3 innings for a 8.22 ERA. He joined the Cardinals organization in the 30th round of the 2009 draft.

Mayes, 21, has only pitched once since the 19th and yielded runs in four of his five outings this season. Allowing ten earned runs in 6 2/3 innings translates to a 13.50 ERA. Midwest League hitters averaged .379 against him. Mayes joined the Cardinals in the 23rd round of the 2006 draft from a California high school.

Like Mayes, Novak (pictured) is a Californian. Taken in the 48th round last June from UCLA, the 22-year-old struck out 24 and walked seven in 21 innings with Johnson City in his 2009 debut, but also yielded 14 earned runs for a 6.00 ERA. Novak appeared in 19 games, all in relief.

Smith, 22, also made his professional start in the Appalachian League last summer, fanning an impressive 37 in 24 1/3 innings while walking seven. The Cardinals 36th rounder in 2009 from Utah Valley University allowed ten earned runs for a 3.70 ERA. Smith appeared in seven games, including three starts.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at brian@thecardinalnationblog.com. Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Brian pens a column each Wednesday at the St. Louis Globe-Democrat and selected TCN content appears at FOXSportsMidwest.com. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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