Results tagged ‘ Wisdom ’
On Wednesday MLB released the Cardinals top 30 prospects for MilbPipeline.com and the list is full of former Chiefs and likely future Chiefs. Of this top 30 list, 13 have already played in Peoria with six players wearing the Chiefs jersey in 2015. Of the remaining 17, seven players have not yet made it to this level so they can be regarded as future Chiefs and some will likely play here in 2016. One player, Magneuris Sierra, is both a former Chiefs outfielder (2015) and possible future Chiefs outfielder for this season.
Lets start with the former Chiefs. Pitchers dominate this list and the top two are former Chiefs in 2014 RHP Alex Reyes and 2015 RHP Jack Flaherty. The aforementioned Sierra comes in at #4 while 2013 Chiefs outfielder Charlie Tilson is at #9. Harrison Bader, who was in the Chiefs outfield for two months last season, rounds out the top 10.
The next 10 kicks off with RHP Sam Tuivailala, who was in the Chiefs bullpen in 2013 and is the only ex-Chief to make it to St. Louis since our 2013 return to the organization. Catcher Carson Kelly (2013-14) ranks #13 while INF Jacob Wilson slots in at #16. Two 2015 Chiefs teammates are next to each other in the rankings with LHP Austin Gomber at #17 and INF Paul DeJong at #18.
The final 10 includes three more former Chiefs with INF Patrick Wisdom (2013) at #22, INF Juan Herrera (2013-14) at #26 and 2015 shortstop Oscar Mercado at #30.
POTENTIAL FUTURE CHIEFS
There are seven players on this list who have not yet made it to the Midwest League. While any of them could leap over Peoria for Palm Beach (like Luke Weaver, Marco Gonzales, Tim Cooney, Trey Nielsen), fans are likely to see at least a few of these players in Peoria. We already mentioned Sierra who started the 2015 season with the Chiefs as an 18-year old before batting .315 with 15 steals and 38 runs scored in Johnson City. Right behind him in the rankings is another Latin American teenager in SS Edmundo Sosa. Sosa hit .399 with seven homers, eight doubles, four triples and 30 runs scored for Johnson City last season. Next up is #6 OF Nick Plummer, the Cardinals first round pick from the 2015 draft. Plummer was drafted out of Brother Rice HS (MI) last June and hit .228 with eight doubles, five triples, 43 runs scored, one homer and 22 RBI in 51 games for the Gulf Coast League Cardinals.
The 11-20 rankings include 5 players who could call Peoria home either in 2016 or 2017. At #12 is RHP Jake Woodford, a Competitive Balance round A pick in 2015 out of Plant HS in Tampa, Florida. Woodford was 1-0 with a 2.39 ERA in eight outings in the GCL last season with 21 strikeouts in 26 1/3 innings. He is followed by the Cardinals second round pick from the 2015 draft, 3B Bryce Denton at #14. A native of Tennessee, Denton won’t turn 19 until August 1 and signed with the Cardinals instead of playing at perennial NCAA power Vanderbilt. In 44 pro games last summer he hit .194 with one homer, one double, two triples, 14 RBI and 21 runs scored. The biggest gainer on this prospect list from 2015 is the #15 ranked RHP Junior Fernandez who was unranked last year. A 6’1 Dominican Republic native, Fernandez turns 19 in early March and hit triple digits on the radar gun last year in the GCL with the Cardinals. In 11 games he went 3-2 with a 3.88 ERA while striking out 58 and walking 15 in 51 innings.
The final two are both pitchers as well with #19 RHP Sandy Alcantara and #20 RHP Ronnie Williams. Alcantara is a 20-year old Dominican native who also throws over 100 mph. Last season with the GCL Cardinals he was 4-4 with a 3.22 ERA in 12 starts while striking out 51 and walking 20 in 64 1/3 innings. Williams was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2014 draft out of high school in Florida. Last season he was 3-3 with a 3.70 ERA in 12 starts for Johnson City while striking out 43 batters in 56 innings.
We won’t know the 2016 roster for more than a month, but with Cardinals minor leaguers reporting to STEP Camp this week and full minor league spring training next week, it sure is fun to look at prospect lists and wonder who will be playing in Peoria this summer!
By Ryan Piers, Broadcasting Assistant
After winning three-of-four games against Burlington, the Chiefs welcome in Wisconsin for a three-game series before beginning a six-game road trip at Clinton. They enter this crucial stretch of their season without one of their main run producers, Patrick Wisdom, who was called up to Palm Beach Wednesday.
Wisdom’s jump to High-A is one that many expected the former first round pick to make at some point this season. Even with his absence to be expected, Wisdom will certainly be missed at third base and in the middle of the Chiefs order. He served as one of the Chiefs main power sources during his time in Peoria, blasting 13 home runs and driving in 62. Wisdom finished second on the team in both categories behind second baseman Jacob Wilson, who was promoted to Palm Beach on July 31.
The recent loss of both Wisdom and Wilson leaves the Chiefs lineup a bit sparse for power. The two combined to belt 28 out of the teams 53 homers this season, as well as drive in 30 percent of the team’s runs. Apart from being important run producers, Wisdom and Wilson were patient hitters combining for 82 walks during their stint with the Chiefs
Jeremy Schaffer becomes the de facto leader in long balls with nine, with two of them coming in game three in their recent series against Burlington. The rest of the current roster has combined for eight. That may not seem like much, but it’s important to remember that this Chiefs team is not built on a home-run happy offense. Their strengths are in their pitching and defense. The staff is in the top three in the Midwest League in earned runs, and the Chiefs have committed the least amount of errors in the league.
There is also a platoon of players who can fill in for both Wisdom and Wilson in the infield. Defensively stellar SS Ildemaro Vargas is very serviceable at third and the newly added Trevor Martin- who is batting .556 in nine games- is a natural at the hot corner. Another newcomer, Bruce Caldwell, has a fair amount of pop and plays second while Breyvic Valera is versatile enough to fill in at either position. Juan Herrera, who made his Chiefs debut on Tuesday, can help compensate for the team’s decrease in power.
Although their absence is palpable, the loss off Wisdom and Wilson isn’t a crushing blow to the offense and ultimately the team’s playoff chances. They are a squad built on much more than home runs, and have plenty of players ready to step up.
Our video team of Ryan, Kristin, Andrew and Aaron produced this compilation of Wisdom’s highlights at Dozer Park this season, accompanied by Nathan Baliva’s radio calls. All the best to Patrick as he plays in Palm Beach and makes his way through the Cardinals organization.