Rants Daily: Matheny talks about second base competition
As the rains fell over the fields in Jupiter yesterday, Mike Matheny gave reporters including Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, some time and provided some morsels to digest concerning the second base competition.
Manager Mike Matheny noted that Skip Schumaker was getting his outfield work in during batting practice. The feeling is Schumaker has played enough innings in the outfield where his attention during drills is expected to be at second base. Matheny further stipulated that Tyler Greene will get a majority of the initial spring starts at second. Matheny insists this is not to show Greene has an edge over the other players, but because he is the least experienced of the three players in the competition (Daniel Descalso being the third).
Every indication from the team has shown some favoritism to Greene. They may be trying to mask it, but the writing is on the wall to me. They would prefer Schumaker be able to be used in all areas of the field. They know that Descalso can play third and maybe the confidence level of David Freese playing a full season is not as high as they are letting on. This leaves Greene, a talented player who has excelled at AAA and failed to translate his abilities in the major leagues. In my eyes the Cardinals are setting this competition up as Greene’s job to lose. Let’s see if he can finally make the next step.
40-MAN ROSTER UNDER CONTRACT
The St. Louis Cardinals have to pay everyone, not just the superstars like Yadier Molina. Yesterday, the team completed finalizing contracts with all players listed on the 40-man roster, according to Goold.
Any of the recently signed contracts are for players who have less than three years experience (or not considered super-two eligible). The team typically uses a formula bases on total games splayed in the majors which is why there is differences among players who have been up with the team for similar lengths of time. The minimum salary for a major leaguer this season is $480,000. This is a large raise from last year, thanks to the recently renewed collective bargaining agreement.
RAIN RAIN GO AWAY
Yesterday’s morning workouts were dampened and lengthened by rain according to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com. Players came in and out of the clubhouse but eventually were able to get in the work they planned though it was done mostly inside. The pitching sessions were not against live hitters. The fields were unusable for fielding drills and some hitters took their rips in the cages.
This morning, Goold reports that Jake Westbrook is the only major league starter among nine scheduled to throw live batting practice today. Lance Lynn, looking to solidify a role in the bullpen is also on tap to take the mound.
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