While personally I was rooting for the Rays, congrats to the Phils for their World Series championship, especially to Ryan Howard and Springfield Illi’s own Jayson Werth. Werth is a player I’ve always liked and thought was underrated, and his grandfather Dick Shofield once donned the birds on the bat.
Ross: Are there any surprise players in the system that might make the big league squad in 2009?
John Mozeliak: Don’t rule out Tyler Greene, he is having a strong Arizona Fall League.
They certainly are in need of some middle infield help, that is certain, but I’m still not sure Greene is the answer. He is however hitting .300/.417/.550 through 40 at bats but has done most of the damage against lefties, pounding them for a whopping 1.706 OPS against. All of this is tiny samples, I’m sure Mo is going off of more than stats, there must also be accompanying good reviews from Pop Warner and his coaches and scouts. I thought Greene might be poised to break out this year, it never fully materialized in the regular season, but perhaps now he turned the corner.
Mo also said in the chat that if Colby shows up to spring training in shape and plays well, he will break camp with the big club. That’s a rather strong statement, and of course, I gotta like it.
Goold elaborates on Greene and catches us up on all the fall and winter league players. (Little known fact about myself: When I was in high school, I was dubbed “Green Day” in gym class by some of the seniors. For some reason they thought I bore a striking resemblance to Billie Joe Armstrong. I don’t see it.)
Baseball America has their report card on the Cards draft. (subscriber content) They for the most part poo-poo, calling it a low-upside draft, few power arms. I tend to agree in some ways, especially about the pitching, but obviously, it is extremely early. I’m sure BA has glowing reviews of some drafts that will turn out to be more bust than bang and vice versa, it’s just the nature of the beast. I can see why they don’t like it, BA loves athletes and the best one they could find out of the “not selling jeans” draft was Sam Freeman. (Whither Devin Shepherd?) Freeman also has the distinction of having the best fastball of the draft and being its fastest player. Yep, fastest player. Maybe after back to back nights of pitching, they could use him as a pinch-runner…
Jonathan Mayo is doing in-depth looks at each farm system, and now has his Cardinal organizational review up.
Arizona Fall League
- Steve Hill went 2-5 with a walk and a homer, taking the Brian Matusz deep. He played catcher, allowing a stolen base.
- Brett Wallace went 2-4 with a double and a walk.
- Tyler Greene went 1-6 with 2 swinging strikeouts. Box
Hawaii Winter Baseball
- Tyler Herron threw four scoreless innings. He allowed five hits, struck out three and did not walk a batter.
- Playing C, Tony Cruz went 2-4 with a double.
- James Rapoport went 1-3. Box.
Dominican Winter League
- Amaury Marti went 0-4 with a sac fly RBI and two strikeouts. Box. The comic book series the Hulk is loosely based on the life story of Amaury Marti.
Venezuelan Winter League
- For Caribes, David Freese went down on strikes three times in four at bats, but he connected when it counted the most, hitting a grand slam. Box.
- For Margarita, Luke Gregerson pitched 2/3rds of an inning, allowing a hit and inducing a ground out and a fly out. Box.