What a strange few years it has been for Delvin Perez. Falling in the 2016 draft due to questions about PEDs, it looked like the Cardinals had stolen a top-level talent. While Perez is still only 21-years old, that evaluation is looking less likely.
Perez has fallen out of practically all the top prospect rankings. He has remained in the lower-levels of the minor leagues, and has struggled to hit at each one. While the Cardinals would love to give him more time to develop, unfortunately Perez is now eligible for the Rule 5 draft.
Top catching prospect Ivan Herrera, top pitching prospect Angel Rondon, and upper-level middle-infielders Evan Mendoza and Kramer Robertson are just a few of the players the Cardinals need to protect from the Rule 5 draft this season. Unless the Cardinals make a lot of moves very quickly, it doesn’t look like there will be room on the 40-man roster for a light-hitting 21-year old at single-A.
The Cardinals might do nothing and just hope that no one selects Delvin Perez. There is still a chance that they trade some of the infielders ahead of him. Most likely, they will be forced to sell-low on Delvin and hope to acquire some talent in return. Maybe the change of scenery will help the talented young player produce, but time has run out on Delvin Perez being a key contributor on the St. Louis Cardinals.