October 30, 2008

What comes before Spring Training? Fall and Winter

... Now that the Word Series is over, Cardinals fans, more than ever, would like to hear about next year.

Here's a great start: Derrick Goold's Bird Land blog for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. With no plays to analyze nor games to live blog, the stoves are heating up with talk of the Fall League. Of course, the Cardinals have minor league prospects playing all over the place right now (Arizona, Hawaii, Dominican Republic, Venezuela), and getting some type of report on who's doing well and where they're doing it is kind of refreshing, especially after watching everyone else finish up their post seasons, respectively. Of course, not all the ML teams were in the post season, but when your team isn't one of them, it sure feels like it.

Many of the usual suspects have been named by Goold, with GM John Mozeliak giving a mention to Tyler Greene that could (dangerously, I might add) blow his head up if he's not careful. In fact, I'm sort of surprised Goold made so much of the short comment. Goold usually gives a realistic report, as he has done in the linked article. Oh well, it's hard not to get optimistic about the Cardinals farm system players these days. After all, when Mozeliak made practically no moves at all this past summer's trade deadline, about all the guys Goold reports on were left to do well for themselves and the Cardinals.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the Fall activity is the positioning, or should I say, re-positioning of selected players. Now that should give you plenty of back-and-forth for awhile, because it can be a very telling part of development, which is not only for the players, but for the Cardinals' organization as a whole. In this way, Mozeliak's words mean little when compared with what's going on in the Fall leagues.
photos by Barbara Moore

Bird Land » Blog Archive » Greene Day: A Winter League Roundup: "It was one of the shortest and more direct answers St. Louis Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak gave in his chat this afternoon here at StlToday.com. The question was essentially who was going to be the next Kyle McClellan, the next “surprise player in the system” who could turn March into a spot on the big-league roster for 2009.

Mozeliak’s answer: "John Mozeliak: Don’t rule out Tyler Greene, he is having a strong Arizona Fall League."