Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch is reporting St. Louis Cardinals’ shortstop Jhonny Peralta will be playing games in Peoria beginning Friday.
From being the St. Louis Cardinals’ everyday shortstop last year to a torn thumb ligament in spring training, Jhonny Peralta will join the Class A Peoria Chiefs Friday night to get some much needed work in.
Derrick Goold also reported that Peralta will start at shortstop while also getting some time in at third base. The Peoria Chiefs have a release on their website saying Peralta will be in Peoria through next Wednesday.
In 2015, Peralta hit 17 home runs and 71 RBI on his way to a .275/.334/.411 slash line. He was also selected as a National League All-Star. Most of his production came in the first half of the season before he essentially dropped off the face of the earth after the all-star break.
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The first half of last season, Peralta hit 13 home runs with 46 RBI. He ended the first half batting almost .300. The second half was a different story. Peralta hit just .243/.306/.325 with four home runs and 25 RBI.
Peralta’s injury has been somewhat of a blessing for the Cardinals offense. The injury invited the debut of Aledmys Diaz who entered Thursday night with the second highest batting average in the National League.
Jhonny Peralta’s defense will be a welcome addition to the Cardinals infield. If most fans had their way, the designated hitter would be in the NL and that’s exactly where Mike Matheny should put Diaz. Peralta committed eight errors in 148 starts at shortstop. Diaz has made ten errors in just 31 starts there this season.
The Chiefs say Peralta is expected to play five games of the six game home stand. He’s the fourth player to make a rehab start in the last four seasons. He joins a list that includes former Cardinals Jon Jay and Jake Westbrook. Jaime Garcia also pitched a rehab start in 2015 in what would become a combined no-hitter for the Chiefs.
It should be a packed house at Dozer Park. It’s not everyday a Major League Baseball player makes a stop in Peoria, but the Chiefs have a rich history of hosting players that have had pretty good careers. Greg Maddux, Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina are just a few.
Friday night at 7:00 p.m. will be fans first chance at seeing Peralta play. He’s not expected to be in the lineup on Sunday.