St. Louis Cardinals Mailbag: What is Stephen Piscotty’s upside?

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St. Louis Cardinals' Aledmys Diaz
Credit: Roger Cotton/Memphis Redbirds /

Aledmys Diaz finished with a vengeance in 2015. Can it continue in 2016?

Spenser asked on Twitter if St. Louis Cardinals shortstop prospect Aledmys Diaz can make the opening day roster? My answer is yes, if he outhits Greg Garcia and shows enough defensive skills. Diaz was designated for assignment last year and rebounded very well late in the year to finish with a .784 OPS split between Springfield and Memphis.

He slugged .445 overall and compiled an OPS of .784. He doesn’t strike out, makes contact and is decent at short. With Jedd Gyorko’s lack of experience at short and Diaz’s upside, he could fit in quite nice in 2016. I don’t see him making the team out of spring training though.

Graham Jacobi-Did the Braves really steal Kevin Maitan away from us?

The 16 year old “jewel” of the international free agent market is being compared to Chipper Jones by the Atlanta Braves and has great speed, good hands and some pop. Did the Cards miss out on this guy or should they take a look? It’s so hard to bet on a kid without much game experience who can’t even legally drive in the states at night. He defected earlier than past players but I won’t call a steal.

Quick take because this deserves more. Carson Kelly won a gold glove in the minors and projects as a defensive minded backstopper with his sub .600 OPS in 2015 at Palm Beach. Michael Ohlman has upside too with his size and pop, slugging 12 home runs and compiling a .774 OPS at Springfield. Ohlman is 25 years old while Kelly is only 21 so there is a gap there.

Ohlman should get his shot at backing up Yadier Molina but the signing of Brayan Pena doesn’t help him. In two years he will be 27 looking at 28 years old and Kelly will almost ready. Pena’s signing may hurt Ohlman’s true shot unless he goes berserk in Memphis.

That’s it. Next week, I will take more questions. Thanks for submitting and go Cards.