“Dippin Dots”, the ice cream of the future, is sold at ballparks all across America, including Busch Stadium. As the tiny frozen balls of happiness are being made in preparation for opening day, the question of who will define and drive the FUTURE, like the “dot” that is taking over the world, one amusement park and sporting venue at a time. The Cardinals have a mountain of youthful and talented ballers, some are more experienced than others, but all of them have the chance to have a breakout year for the Cards and become an All-Star. Let the speculation begin!
First, to review 2012, Lance “Double L” Lynn was an All-Star last year and finished with 18 wins and 180 strikeouts. Basically, LL was like “Dippin Dots” in 1988. Now he is Lance Light, sporting a slim look that should help him during the later part of the grueling season. Will he bring the needed dependability to the fourth spot in the rotation?
Allen “Wrench” Craig had a historic 2012-year, his .307 batting average and 92 runs batted in resembled his scorching 2011 post-season. Today, he is already renowned as one of the best clutch hitters in the game. Can Craig continue his ferocious offense and continue to improve his defense?
John “The Federalist” Jay gobbled up balls anywhere in the center field vicinity in 2012, while committing NO errors. His .305 batting average and 19 stolen bases, filled in nicely at the leadoff spot as needed. Plus his hard play and hustle was contagious with young players and inspiring for the elders. Can Jay stay healthy and produce similar fruit to last season?
Now, it is time to analyze the newer players who can make a serious impact for the Birdinals this season.
Matt “Toolbox” Carpenter has been in Jupiter longer than any other player working on his second base skills. Last year he committed 9 errors (5 more than Skip Schumaker) and Carpenter is looking to beat out Daniel Descalso and Kolton Wong at the crucial infield position. His versatility and .294 batting average make fans hope his defensive skills can adapt and put him in the daily lineup.
Trevor “The Grill” Rosenthal had convincing showings out of the bullpen in late 2012 holding opponents to an average of .175. While Trevor may be in contention for the fifth starter spot, as a reliever he strikes fear in all batters with his sheer power. He may be a better closer in the future considering that Motte blew various saves at the end of the season. What will Rosenthal’s role be for St. Louis in the near future?
Matt “Patch” Adams did not excel last season (.244 batting average), but hopes are still high for the first baseman. His AAA numbers show promise and lots of power. How many at bats will Adams get in 2013, and how long will he be with the St. Louis organization?
Oscar “The Saint” Taveras is hyped up for many reasons. He is one of the most touted prospects in MLB because of his natural abilities on the diamond, but he hasn’t even played in AAA. Will Oscar spend time in St. Louis this year? Will he be filling in for an aging Beltran, or a battered Jay in 2013?
Shelby “Mustang” Miller started the last game of the 2012 regular season versus the NL Central Champion Reds. During that game, the then 21 year-old took a no hitter into the sixth inning, and was one out away from getting taking it into the seventh. Throughout the playoffs, Miller showed off his diverse pitch selection and ability to strikeout any batter. He could be the fifth starter that the Cardinals groom to do what Lynn did last year.
Since February is crammed with rumors and hearsay, please comment for who will be the 2013 Breakout “Dippin Dot” player to change the future of The St. Louis Cardinals Baseball Organization.