St. Louis Cardinals: Mozeliak showcasing talent ahead of trades

michaeldavidmiles
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 21: Paul DeJong
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 21: Paul DeJong /
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The St. Louis Cardinals demoted one player on Wednesday and promoted another young talent. This double-edged move affords more than time for a starter to work on some issues.

The St. Louis Cardinals must decided to be buyers or sellers as the trade deadline approaches. That horse is well dead but will bear the beating until a decision is made. In the wake of this decision-need, GM Mozeliak demoted Aledmys Diaz on Wednesday and promoted Alex Mejia.

This move was centrally focused on Diaz who has had a rough time of late. Diaz has committed errors that are unthinkable and have lead to or contributed to losses. In addition to his struggles on the field, Diaz hasn’t seemed like the same batter at the plate. This optioning should afford him time to, “get his mind right.”

Additionally, this move could spell a position change for Diaz. Rumors had circulated that the St. Louis Cardinals were kicking the tires on Adeiny Hechavarria, the short stop from the Miami Marlins. Hechavarria ultimately landed with the Rays but could this interest show a desire to “relocate” Diaz on the Cardinals diamond?

Diaz has yet to make a AAA start since the demotion so time will tell if the Cardinals start experimenting with him on the diamond. To that extent, it might make the most sense to work him at third base- a position he has fielded in fifty-four games in foreign and fall-league play- or to second- a position he has played in eight games across foreign, fall-league, and minor-league play.

Buoying to the majors in a corresponding move was yet another prospect that Mozeliak, in my opinion, is showcasing: Alex Mejia. Prior to Mejia, Mozeliak has displayed the likes of Magneuris Sierra, Paul DeJong (who seems to have “stuck” with the MLB team in response to Kolten Wong‘s injury), Mike Mayers, and- most recently- Luke Voit.

Here’s a look at Mejia’s offensive stats:

Register Batting
YearAgeTmLgLevGPAABRH2B3BHRRBISBCSBBSOBAOBPSLGOPSTBGDPHBPSHSFIBB
201221BataviaNYPLA-2310096924501710213.250.265.333.5993230200
2013222 Teams2 LgsA+-A12149544852104232137842268.232.274.299.5741341461450
201322Palm BeachFLORA+813262952661140024631339.207.247.254.501751241040
201322PeoriaMIDWA4016915326439211321929.281.327.386.7135922410
2014232 Teams2 LgsA+-AA12047743843122162450642261.279.314.352.666154133952
201423SpringfieldTLAA49183163134431321221320.270.326.356.6825842231
201423Palm BeachFLORA+71294275307813112942941.284.307.349.6569691721
2015242 Teams2 LgsAAA-AA933192823877122529412644.273.338.383.72110873532
201524MemphisPCLAAA59187167264671317301525.275.335.383.7186461221
201524SpringfieldTLAA34132115123151212111119.270.341.383.7244412311
2016252 Teams2 LgsAA-AAA782952692564142124111738.238.289.316.60585123420
201625MemphisPCLAAA34108999277201000412.273.314.384.6983832300
201625SpringfieldTLAA44187170163770114111326.218.274.276.5514791120
2017262 Teams2 LgsAA-AAA742932652667180327111942.253.309.355.6649484231
201726MemphisPCLAAA11423821010030036.263.333.289.6231111000
201726SpringfieldTLAA632512272457170324111636.251.305.366.6718373231
YearAgeTmLgLevGPAABRH2B3BHRRBISBCSBBSOBAOBPSLGOPSTBGDPHBPSHSFIBB
AllAllAll50919791798193458888151742111108266.255.301.338.639607571936185
AAAAAAAAAMinors1043373043783153330302243.273.328.372.700113104521
AA (AA (AA (Minors190753675651693229715553101.250.309.344.652232218893
A+ (A+ (A+ (Minors152620570561392711531052280.244.275.300.5751712151761

And here’s a look at Mejia’s defensive numbers:

Register Fielding
YearAgeTmLgLevGGSCGInnChPOAEDPFld%RF/9RF/GPBWPSBCSCS%lgCS%PO
201221BataviaNYPLA-SS2222185.11022475315.9714.814.50
2013222 Teams2 LgsA+-ASS1181161011.15221663342264.9584.454.24
201322Palm BeachFLORA+SS8079682.23471082241543.9574.384.15
201322PeoriaMIDWASS3837328.217558110721.9604.604.42
2014232 Teams2 LgsA+-AASS114112998.05241703312373.9564.524.39
201423SpringfieldTLAASS4747406.0188621151120.9413.923.77
201423Palm BeachFLORA+SS6765592.03361082161253.9644.934.84
2015242 Teams2 LgsAA-AAA2B19149.2643131210.9693.733.26
2015242 Teams2 LgsAAA-AA3B34239.086245937.9653.132.44
2015242 Teams2 LgsAAA-AASS35265.21394195320.9784.613.89
201524MemphisPCLAAA2B857.133141819.9705.024.00
201524MemphisPCLAAA3B24160.256134125.9643.022.25
201524MemphisPCLAAASS22160.1842855114.9884.663.77
201524SpringfieldTLAA2B1192.131171311.9682.922.73
201524SpringfieldTLAA3B1078.130111812.9673.332.90
201524SpringfieldTLAASS13105.155134026.9644.534.08
2016252 Teams2 LgsAA-AAA2B4221.01147011.0004.712.75
2016252 Teams2 LgsAA-AAASS6561528.0238761521032.9583.893.51
201625MemphisPCLAAA2B119.0303001.0003.003.00
201625MemphisPCLAAA3B11873.21688011.0001.951.45
201625MemphisPCLAAASS2221168.063194226.9683.272.77
201625SpringfieldTLAA2B3112.0844011.0006.002.67
201625SpringfieldTLAASS4340360.017557110826.9544.183.88
2017262 Teams2 LgsAA-AAASS7069594.1313109195955.9714.604.34
201726MemphisPCLAAA2B2216.0743011.0003.943.50
201726MemphisPCLAAA3B119.0202001.0002.002.00
201726MemphisPCLAAASS8764.029821031.0004.083.63
201726SpringfieldTLAASS6262530.1284101174952.9684.674.44
YearAgeTmLgLevGGSCGInnChPOAEDPFld%RF/9RF/GPBWPSBCSCS%lgCS%PO
AllAllAll2B254186.2823941212.9763.863.20
AllAllAll3B469321.2104326938.9712.832.20
AllAllAllSS4243803582.21838586118270259.9624.444.17

Notice that for the past three season, Mejia has bounced between AA and AAA. This was due to his abilities as well as him being blocked from promotion thanks to the likes of Diaz, Jhonny Peralta/Jedd Gyorko (since he can play third), Wong/Gyorko/Greg Garcia (since he can play second).

More from St Louis Cardinals News

What does this all say, then? If we look at the three names listed above, Mozeliak seems to be showing the rest of Major League Baseball a few of the prospects who could be included as “pork” contributions for trades. While these names are not likely to be front-runners in any deal, they could well spice up another team’s interest in what the St. Louis Cardinal might be asking.

These names also tell me that Mozeliak is protecting other notable prospects and not allowing them to show just how MLB-ready they may or may not be. These include, in my opinion at least, Carson Kelly (who should, IMO, 100% be playing in St. Louis right now), Harrison Bader, Luke Weaver, and Jack Flaherty.

Oh, and lest we forget that the “demotion” of Diaz could well also spell protection for him. For all we know, teams have called Mozeliak asking on Diaz and Mo isn’t interested in selling this piece (at least not yet with his value low thanks to performance).

While we may not know what moves are being made or are in the works, my gut simply tells me that the promotion of these names is a parade of talent for other teams’ benefits. True, the St. Louis Cardinals could well benefit from the rise of sparking talent, but the timing just feels too much like the M.O. of Mo. Thanks for reading!

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