St. Louis' prospects are disbursed among five leagues located in four countries. Brian Walton has a good overview of players potentially participating along with a link to an interview with Moises Rodriguez, Cardinals director of international operations, outlining the process of how players are placed.
The first of two weekly reports will cover the Dominican (Winter) League and the Puerto Rico League.
The Dominican League is comprised of six teams with a season that runs from October 18 through December 22, 2013. One of the highlights of the season is the All-Star Game which will take place in December.
Seven Cardinals minor leaguers are tentatively scheduled to be split among four squads. Aguilas Cibaenas (Eagles) is the home of righty pitcher Jose Almarante, third baseman Jermaine Curtis and catcher Audry Perez, all of whom finished the minor league season with Triple-A Memphis. Former Redbirds reliever Adam Reifer is spending the winter with Aguilas as well.
The Gigantes (Giants) de Cibao has second baseman Ronny Gil (Palm Beach) on their roster while the Leones (Lions) of Escogido house southpaw Nick Additon (Memphis pending free agent) and outfielder Starlin Rodriguez (Springfield). Finally, the Tigres (Tigers) de Licey is where right-handed pitcher Willy Paulino (State College) landed.
Also, the Dominican Instructional League will begin in November. The league is an off-shoot of the Dominican Winter League, designed for younger, less-experienced players.
Aguilas Cibaenas –
Aguilas has set a torrid pace in the early going with a 7-1 record so far.
- Jose Almarante: does not currently appear on the Cibaenas' roster
- Jermaine Curtis: did not appear in a game until five games into Aguilas' season but has started all four subsequent contests. Despite being listed as an outfielder on the team roster, Curtis played third exclusively, batting ninth. The 26-year-old has a line of .273/.333/.364/.697, 3-for-11 with a double, walk, stolen base, four strikeouts and a throwing error.
- Audry Perez: has been the starting catcher three times and has gone .333/.333/.750/1.083, 4-for-12 with a home run and a passed ball error. Perez has hit either eighth or ninth.
Gigantes de Cibao –
Cibao has won two, lost five with two games postponed in the early going.
- Ronny Gil: Gil is back for another season with the Gigantes after having played for them in 2012. His pinch hit single on the 20th drove in a run in a losing effort. Gil remained in the game at third but committed a throwing error. On the 24th he once again singled in a pinch hit appearance and made his first start on the 26th. Overall, Gil has gone .429/.429/.429/.857, 3-for-7 with an RBI, stolen base, strikeout and error.
Leones de Escogido –
The Leones have gone 5-3 with one postponed to date. Their roster includes former players such as St. Louis' Fernando Tatis and Springfield's Juan castillo while their pitching coach is former Redbird and Cardinal Nerio Rodriguez.
- Nick Additon: received a no decision in his start on the 21st. The pending minor league free agent yielded three tallies on four hits, two walks, a hit batsman and two sac flies in four frames. He fanned two.
- Starlin Rodriguez: is not currently listed on Escogido's roster
Tigres de Licey –
Licey has a record of 6-3 with one postponed. Former Redbird Victor Marte is on their roster.
- Willy Paulino: is not currently listed on the Tigres' roster but may be slated for the Dominican Instructional League.
Puerto Rico's baseball season begins November 1st and runs through the end of December with the play-offs stretching into January. More on this league as the season starts.
Coming soon: Part two of this report will cover Cardinals prospects' results the past week in Venezuela and Nicaragua.
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