Results tagged ‘ P.J. Walters ’

Walters headed east

Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak confirmed on Friday night that right-hander P.J. Walters is on his way to St. Louis to join the team on Saturday afternoon. Mozeliak said that the club has not yet determined who will be placed on the disabled list to accommodate Walters.

The options are starter Brad Penny, who left Friday’s win over the Angels with a right lat strain, and reliever Blake Hawksworth, who is sidelined due to a sore right groin. The club will determine which player will be shelved on Saturday morning after further evaluation of the two injured players’ situation.
Saturday would be Walters’ day to pitch Triple-A Memphis, which is playing at Sacramento this weekend. So he will be available to pitch multiple innings in relief over the weekend. Any decisions beyond that remain a bit hazy. Walters could take Penny’s next turn in the rotation, or the Cardinals could look to Adam Ottavino to take that job.
-M.

Monday camp tidbits: Miller, Lugo, Ryan, Walters

Clouds threatened all day here in Jupiter, but I never saw a drop of rain. It was another mild day, with temperatures getting up into the 70s — perfect day for getting some work in.

* The Cardinals will bring in top Draft pick Shelby Miller and Minor League left-hander Sam Freeman tomorrow. Technically they are not non-roster invitees, but instead early arrivals to camp. Don’t read too much into this; it’s not as though Miller is going to make the roster or even start in the high Minors. But it will be interesting to see him throw.
* More arrivals came today, the last day before full-squad workouts. Among those appearing were Julio Lugo, Brendan Ryan and P.J. Walters. Check the site for stories on both Ryan and Walters and their situations.
* Speaking of Lugo, TLR didn’t rule out the possibility of him seeing some time in the outfield, even center field, this year. Somebody has to be a right-handed-hitting option in center, and players like Lugo and Tyler Greene might well fit the bill.
* Other positional notes: the manager didn’t sound like we’ll be seeing much of Allen Craig at third base in camp. He’s more likely to be at first and in the outfield. Given the current roster configuration, it sounds like David Freese and Joe Mather will get the bulk of the time at third, and Greene could play there some as well.
* One thing you may see in some games this spring is Colby Rasmus getting more of a look against left-handed pitchers. Whereas the preference is sometimes to give Rasmus a rest against lefties during the season, Spring Training presents a perfect opportunity to get experience against them.
* Live batting practice started today, with four pitchers throwing: Mitchell Boggs, Ben Jukich, Lance Lynn and Pete Parise. Four more pitchers throw live tomorrow, and then it picks up in larger numbers on Wednesday.
Today’s playlist:
Soul Asylum, “Without a Trace”
Pixies, “Debaser”
The Clash, “Straight To Hell”
Primal Scream, “Jailbird”
The White Stripes, “My Doorbell”
-M.

Thursday tidbits: And so it begins

Lots of tidbits today, and for some of you the best news of all is that today’s tidbits are a McGwire-free zone. It was another gorgeous day down here, unusually cool for the area (below 50 in the morning, mid-60s in the afternoon) but clear. Supposed to be warming up as the weekend goes on.

* Both TLR (to the group of us) and Mozeliak (to me in a chat this afternoon) reiterated that the Cardinals are not in any hurry to add an infielder or anything else. They’re aware that Brendan Ryan’s injury is something that could create some complications, but there will be no overreaction.

Reports continue to swirl that the Cardinals are “pursuing” Felipe Lopez, but let’s be realistic here. It’s Feb. 18. If they were really pursuing him that hard, they’d likely have signed him. More probable is that they’re keeping the lines of communication open in case the fit suddenly becomes better.

Here’s TLR on the situation: “I think we’re doing the things to protect ourselves. I don’t think you go out there and trade for an everyday shortstop. We expect him to come back, and we cover until he comes back. I think that’s one of the things we’ve talked about, some protection, infield, outfield.”

Meanwhile, Mozeliak said that he expected any move the Cardinals made would likely take place late in camp. He also said he had no issues with Ryan waiting until next week to arrive.

“He’s coming on his report date,” Mozeliak said. “We didn’t feel like we needed to change flights or anything like that. there’s not a whole lot he could have done today, tomorrow, this weekend.”

* The turnout continues to be excellent. Colby Rasmus is now in camp. That means that it’s entirely possible that seven of the nine players in the Opening Day lineup are already here. If Ryan is out, I’d guess that Tyler Greene will start. So all of the following players are currently in camp and could start on April 5 in Cincinnati: Yadier Molina, Skip Schumaker, Greene, David Freese, Rasmus, Ryan Ludwick and either Adam Wainwright or Chris Carpenter.

* Among the pitchers and catchers, the only one not present is P.J. Walters, who is tending to the health of his newborn baby. I have not heard anything recently about how the child is doing, but I certainly wish the whole family well.

* La Russa said that every pitcher who is in camp is healthy and ready to go on the full, normal program.

* One interesting player this spring, and a guy I’ve liked for a long time, is Joe Mather. If Mather is healthy and effective, he’ll have every chance to make the team. He can play some third and first and both corner outfield spots. But he’s played some middle infield very early in his career, and TLR said Thursday that he considers Mather a viable center field option.

“Absolutely,” he said. “I think just about anywhere. This guy is a player.”

It’s a funny twist. A year ago, Mather’s best chance to make the team appeared to be moving from the outfield to third base. This year, his ability to play center, as a right-handed batter, might just be his ticket onto the roster.

* Pitchers and catchers underwent physicals and drug tests this morning, so they started their workout later than normal. Tomorrow’s workout should be closer to 9 a.m. ET.

Today’s playlist is all Nirvana because, well, I’m on a Nirvana kick:
“School”
“Lithium”
“Heart Shaped Box”
“Pennyroyal Tea”
“Smells Like Teen Spirit”

-M.

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