The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have outrighted catcher Steven Hill, catcher Bryan Anderson, and right handed pitcher Adam Reifer to Triple-A Memphis. With the moves they are removed from the organization’s 40 man roster. The 40 man roster currently stands at 36 players. The team added right handed pitcher Jorge Rondon earlier this week.
Teams have until November 20th to change their 40 man roster ahead of the Rule 5 Draft which will take place in December. Any players who are not on the 40 man roster and have been in the minors for more than 4 or 5 years (depending on the age when they signed with the organization) are eligible for the Rule 5 Draft. As a result of being outrighted, Hill, Anderson, and Reifer are now eligible to be claimed.
Hill, 27, was a 13th round pick of the 2007 draft for the Cardinals. He has had two separate stints with the Cardinals. In 2010 he made an appearance in an August game against the Chicago Cubs and homered for his first major league hit. He had 10 plate appearances this past season. The right handed hitter hit .266/.326/.488 with 17 HR and 52 RBI in 87 games for the Memphis Redbirds this year. He’s had most of his time in the minors at catcher or first base, but has time in left field, right field, and at third base as well.
Anderson, 25, was a 4th round pick of the 2005 draft for the Cardinals. He was highly touted prospect, but his power stroke never developed as expected. He has made appearances in two different seasons for the Cardinals, putting up a line of .273/.327/.333 in 49 plate appearances. He’s always been the red headed step child of the Cardinals’ minor league catchers as it’s been reported some of the team’s veteran pitchers didn’t like the way he handled the game behind the plate. Given an opportunity to have the everyday job in Memphis with Tony Cruz in St. Louis, he struggled with a .225/.302/.317 slash line with 6 home runs and 35 RBI in 100 games. Unlike Hill, Anderson has stayed behind the plate in the minors.
Reifer, 26, was an 11th round pick of the 2007 draft for the Cardinals. Seemingly was a rising star in the organization until he tore his ACL during a relief appearance in April of 2011. He struggled this season in Memphis posting a 4.90 ERA over 64 innings and 58 relief appearances. He had yet to see any time with the major league club.
I expect that Anderson will be selected in the Rule 5 Draft. Reifer has a shot at being selected as well because it’s a low risk proposition for a team.