While it is highly likely that Kolten Wong will be on the St. Louis Cardinals roster, it will not be until closer til the end of the season.
Feb 19, 2013; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals player Kolten Wong poses for a picture during photo day at Roger Dean Stadium. Image Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Like many other top prospects in other organizations, Wong has been re-assigned to the minor leagues. The Cardinals announced yesterday several reassignments. The second baseman was one of five to be sent to the minor league camp. Joining Wong in being sent to the minor league camp are right-handed pitcher Seth Maness, catchers Audry Perez and J.R. Towles, and outfielder Justin Christian.
As a result of the roster moves, the Cardinals have reduced the number of players currently on the Major League spring roster to 32. The goal is to get the number down to 25 by the time the Cardinals head west to Phoenix to open the season against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Shelby Miller is expected to start Monday’s game against the Minnesota Twins. Does this mean he is in the lead for the fifth and final spot of the Cardinals pitching rotation? Maybe. In all likelihood, the future staff ace will be starting the season in the rotation.
However, Jason Motte‘s recent injury, requiring a trip to the DL, has shaken things up a bit. This means that there is an extra opening in the bullpen. Joe Kelly was already expected to be taking a role as a long reliever in all likelihood but Motte’s injury opens a spot for Fernando Salas.
As it stands right now, the bullpen includes set relief roles for Mitchell Boggs, Edward Mujica, Trevor Rosenthal, Randy Choate and Marc Rzepczynski. Add Kelly and Salas and it appears that the Cardinals will be carrying at least twelve pitchers to start the season. Boggs will serve as a temporary closer as the Cardinals start the season.