The next stop on this tour is left handed pitcher Tyler Lyons. Lyons was selected by the Yankees in the 10th round of the 2009 Major League draft out of Oklahoma State University, but elected not to sign. When he was selected by the Cardinals in the 9th round of the 2010 draft, he would sign though wouldn’t play for the organization in 2010.
He began the 2011 season in the Palm Beach rotation. After 21 relief appearances, he slid into the starting rotation where he has stayed since. Last year he posted a 4.13 ERA and a 9-13 record over 27 starts between Springfield and Memphis. He may have been moved through the system a little faster than beneficial for him, but he will be 25 by the time this season starts, so he is fast aging himself out of prospect status.
As a left handed reliever in the Cardinals’ organization, they’ll need all the talent they can get in that department. An invitation to Spring Training is a big plus for Lyons over some of the other left handers ahead of him in the organization. How he develops this next year will be interesting to watch.
You can follow him on Twitter at @Tyler_Lyons.
Seth Maness was an 11th round pick of the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2011 MLB draft. A right handed pitcher out of East Carolina. He was a middle infielder when he started his collegiate career, but was converted to pitcher after injury struck the Pirates’ starting rotation. He was Conference USA’s Pitcher of the Year in 2010.
Maness, 24, compiled an 14-4 record over 7 starts in Palm Beach and 20 more in Springfield. His combined ERA was 2.97. He was awarded the organization’s Pitcher of the Year Award after the season. I’m not sure if you could really call it a breakout season for the young right hander considering he posted a 1.53 ERA over 53 innings between Batavia, Quad Cities, and Palm Beach in 2011.
Maness is known for his control. In fact over his 223 innings in his minor league career he has only walked 15 batters. That control is his best asset. His other tools make him a fringe-type player on most prospect lists, but keeping guys off base is half the battle. If he keeps learning he could surprising quite a few people and end up being a Kyle Lohse type in my opinion.
If Twitter is your thing, you can find him @Maness_43.
Today is one of the most exciting days for MLB prospect nerds around World…the start of the MLB Draft! This is going to be a very interesting year to pay closer attention to the draft as their is new CBA rules in place that impacts how teams approach their draft strategy. The key here is the hard slotting system for the combination of the first ten rounds and the penalties if teams go over that or don’t sign a player. I won’t get into the new CBA here as there are many sites that have great detail about it. I want to focus on our St. Louis Cardinal’s draft strategy and key individuals that we should be targeting with our early picks. Let’s jump right in…
The Cardinals had a nice run with Jeff Luhnow running the draft over the last number of years. Luhnow with the Astros now gets to have something he never had in his time in St. Louis: Making the #1 overall pick. All reports are indicating Mark Appel (RHP Stanford) are going to be the pick after a tug of war over him and Byron Buxton (OF GA HS) over the last few weeks. So this means the Cardinals have a new face running the draft and potentially a different strategy. Dan Krantrovitz is our new Director of Scouting. From all interviews with him and Mo that address the draft strategy it appears the overall framework of the strategy will be very similiar to what we had grown accustom to under Luhnow. The one difference is it appears we might be looking for more upside more often and slightly less emphasis on the “safe” college pick which happened at times. Obviously we will find out over the next few days and the CBA will impact how much we can do this. My take is we will see more HS players taken in the first few picks but plenty of slot or underslot college picks to compensate the hard slot system. Continue reading
Walking up to Roger Dean Stadium I could just feel the vibe of baseball, brats and beers. We arrived around 10:30am to see the team practicing on the backfields though this was our first ever time to Jupiter to experience the Cards Spring Training so we had no idea where to go and we were also in ahh over the experience. After taking pictures of Roger Dean and asking a few employees and other Cards fans how to get to the backfields we made our way back. It is quite a hike to get around the stadium and all the way around to the backfields but it was well worth our time. Matheny was right in the middle of everything leading his troops. The players were much more relaxed as you would expect at practice early in Spring Training with the exception of the youngsters that had something to prove…this was their chance to be in front of the coaches, players and front office to make an impression. For me it was a chance to get closer to all the players, coaches and front office which was an experience of a lifetime for a hardcore baseball and Cards fan. It was like a community back there as all the fans would talk with anyone just like you were neighbors for the last 10 years. Talking baseball with others that love baseball is much as you is quite exciting. Practice was winding down and many fans were heading to Roger Dean to get situated before the game…I wanted to stay as long as anyone was back there practicing. It came down to Matheny working directly with some of the young catchers such as De La Cruz, Stanley and Hill. Afterwards Matheny came over and chatted a little with the few fans left and signed autographs…my first autograph of Spring Training was our our new skipper!
Your 2011 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals are about to start their 2012 Spring Training games. I’m not sure about you but just saying that gets me excited! After winning the World Series you better believe every team will be looking to knock us off and put just a little more effort into doing it. So what has happened since I was by the RF foul (or fair) pole for the last out of Game 7 of the WS? Unless you have lived on a different planet for the past number of months you know the answer to that question is a TON!