Quick name the pitcher from the 2009 draft who has advanced the furthest in the Cardinals minor league system thus far. Shelby Miller? Nope. Actually, that recognition currently goes to Scott Schneider drafted in the 20th round, 609th overall. An unheralded pick out of St. Mary’s College in California, Schneider has fit easily into the Cardinals pitching philosophy of throwing strikes and getting groundballs.
In 2009, Schneider began at Batavia where he overmatched the young hitters striking out nearly a third of the batters he faced. He was quickly promoted to Quad Cities where he would again strikeout batters at an excellent clip, generate impressive groundball rates and display above average control. In 2010, Schneider returned to Quad Cities (joined in the rotation by Shelby Miller) and was promoted to Palm Beach at mid-season. After moderate success at Palm Beach, Schneider’s peripheral statistics (K-rate, GB rate) have both rebounded nicely as he begins the year in AA Springfield.
I had the opportunity to exchange some questions with Scott and his answers follow below.