Catching Up With the Cardinals: Monday Morning Edition

Ah, Monday morning … right after Daylight Saving Time begins. And just when we were beginning to enjoy the fact it was brightening up after 6 a.m. Patience is now needed again for the longer days ahead.

DiazAs you’ve probably read by now, the St. Louis Cardinals have signed 23-year-old Cuban free agent shortstop Aledmys Diaz to a four-year contract. There aren’t many details about it yet, as he’s scheduled to be introduced at a news conference this morning, but Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has some good info on what he calls “a landmark moment for the Cardinals. His will be the richest contract ever from the Cardinals for an international free agent or amateur, signaling their intent to reach beyond the Latin America amateur market they’ve cultivated.”

Joe Schwarz at Viva El Birdos also has been covering Diaz in-depth since he first worked out for the Cardinals several weeks ago.

Headed to Jupiter, Fla., to see the Cardinals spring training games at Roger Dean Stadium? Forbes reports that the Cardinals have the 10th most expensive spring training tickets, with an average price of $50. The teams with more expensive tickets, in order from 9 to 1: the Astros (perhaps surprisingly?), the Twins, the Phillies, the Cubs (which is perhaps not a surprise — have you seen there new spring home?), the Yankees, the Giants, the Rangers, the Braves (who train at Disney World) and, of course, the Red Sox with an average price of $79.

With two weeks of spring training games now complete, who are the biggest surprises so far? Corey Noles breaks that down at The Daily Statesman. One surprise he mentions is Tyler Lyons:

One of only three pitchers to toss five or more innings in a game this season, Lyons has so far held hitters to a .118 average and is sporting a 1.80 ERA.

Another impressive bit from Lyons is the fact that he is currently tied for the team strikeout lead this spring with 5, giving him a hefty 0.40 WHIP.

And, ladies, there’s a very nice photo of Tyler there too …

Everyone loves a great feature on Adam Wainwright, and here’s another one from The Florida Times-Union: How St. Simons Island native Adam Wainwright became an ace for the Cardinals.

Here’s a look back at the 2011 trade of Colby Rasmus from a Blue Jays perspective.

Remember the push to make Opening Day a national holiday? While the petition currently has just over 63,500 signatures and still needs more than 36,400 by March 26 to move forward, I mostly considered it a light-hearted, fun thing that never will really become official. Right? I mean, it’s sponsored by Budweiser. Here’s someone who takes the whole idea of an Opening Day national holiday a little too seriously.

Speaking of Opening Day, it’s three weeks from today! And the home opener at Busch Stadium is four weeks from today! (Which reminds me that I need to submit my time-off requests at work, since neither of those days really is a holiday!) Anyway, three weeks from today the Cardinals will take on the Cincinnati Reds. It will be the 2,306 meeting between the two teams — just one tidbit from A Storied Rivalry, Part I, which is the first of a four-part series chronicling the shared history of the two teams. You’ll never guess what the photo illustrating the post is of, even though that was in 2010 and Part I only goes through 1935. Still, it’s interesting and in-depth.

On a related note: my, this is just shocking

Happy Monday!

Christine Coleman is the lead writer for Aaron Miles’ Fastball. Follow her on Twitter, @CColeman802, or email Also follow @AMilesFastball for the latest updates and like us on Facebook if you don’t already.

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