Last Sunday I made the trip to Memphis to see the St. Louis Cardinals AAA affiliate Memphis Redbirds. They were playing the Iowa Cubs. As a Cardinal fan, it wasn’t exactly the greatest of games. Losing 5-1 to a Cub team is never pleasant.
But I will give the Memphis team this: they do suck because most of their good players are in St. Louis. Think about it … Adron Chambers, Brandon Dickson, Eduardo Sanchez, Chuckie Fick … and oh yeah, Matt Adams … all in St. Louis. So while it’s great for our team, it’s not exactly good for their minor league team. Another way to look at that: which matters more to you?! That’s what I thought!
So here are a few observations from the game:
* Zack Cox and Ryan Jackson will need tons of work before they are ready for the Bigs. Just sayin’! Zack suffered from GIDP syndrome. That’s right! He was doing his best impersonation of That Guy That Used to Play First Base, and grounded into a double play every time he was up. And what made it worse, Ryan Jackson got on base ahead of him every time. Ryan’s problem, you see, is not offense. Ryan’s problem is defense. Guaranteed if the ball came at him at shortstop, he would dive for it … every single time. But he never caught the hit and would just lay their watching the outfielder hustle to get it and throw in. He would just be sprawled out, like a pouting 7-year-old boy. Watching. Making no effort to get up until the ball was already thrown back in the infield. Can you tell I wasn’t impressed? I know our fan base has high expectations for these two being the future of the left side of our infield. But. Here’s the thing … These two need to be in the minors. I’m not kidding. They need at the very least a couple of more years until they are ready. Let’s not rush them, OK!
* Pitching. Nope. I didn’t get to see John Gast during this trip. Yes. That upset me. Greatly. I did get to see Nick Additon and Jess Todd again. Additon needs to make some big improvements if he ever wants to get past AAA. He’s a lefty, which is always nice. But the Cubs hitters just murdered him. Todd was quite good. But again. He needs more work! Adam Reifer made an appearance too. Needs work!
* Call Ups I Got To See: Pete Kozma was on the bench. From what I remember of Pete, they could have used him at second. Eugenio Velez played at second. He needs some work too! Mark Hamilton played in the outfield. I enjoy getting to see him make it up to St. Louis. He seemed like he was getting there but still working out some kinks for consistency. Bryan Anderson did a great job behind the plate and made an outstanding play to pick off a runner coming home and the completing a double play by throwing out a runner scrambling back to second. I honestly hope we don’t have to see him, but if we do … he’ll be good behind the plate.
* Jamie Romak was my favorite! He hit, he ran, he hustled, he was the lone run and … yeah! I liked him! He normally plays some at first but was also in the outfield on Sunday. Versatile!
* The Cubs. Yup. I got to see Anthony Rizzo and Brett Jackson. Neither had very good games so it’s hard to say what I thought! But the Memphis Redbirds did make Chris Volstad look like a Cy Young candidate. And Carlos Marmol. He was so incredibly wild. I’m talking pitches to the backstop a couple of times. I was surprised he got called back up to Chicago after the performance.
I will try to see Memphis again this season and I hope to see some dramatic improvement as either SOME of the players come back or the players who are there get consistency!
Now! Here are some pictures!
Miranda Remaklus is lead St. Louis Cardinals contributor to Aaron Miles’ Fastball. She’s also lead writer for Aerys Offsides. Follow her on Twitter, @missmiranda.