The St. Louis Cardinals announced their taxi squad players yesterday. Today, they announced who will be at their alternate site.
The roster features pitchers Jesus Cruz, Junior Fernandez, Connor Jones, Evan Kruczynski, Matthew Liberatore, Johan Oviedo, Tommy Parsons, Johan Quezada, Roel Ramirez, Angel Rondon, Zack Thompson, Austin Warner and Garrett Williams, catchers Tyler Heineman and Dennis Ortega, infielders Evan Mendoza, Max Moroff and Kramer Robertson, and outfielders Conner Capel, Scott Hurst and Lars Nootbar.
The most prominent name on this list is Liberatore, the Cardinals’ top pitching prospect. He impressed the Cardinals players and front office this spring and some believe he could appear in the majors at some point soon. Adam Wainwright is among the players who have publicly touted up the left-hander, recently saying: “Just wait, that trade is going to work out just great for us.”
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The trade he is referencing, of course, is the deal that sent Randy Arozarena to the Tampa Bay Rays. He eventually went on to lead the Rays to within reaching distance of winning the World Series before eventually falling to the Los Angeles Dodgers. But during the postseason, and even after it, the talk surrounded the Cardinals getting ripped off. Wainwright says not so fast, and Liberatore’s play this spring underscored why.
Another name that drew praise is Moroff, who was in contention for a spot in the outfield only days before Opening Day. Despite not making the initial roster, the Cardinals will use Moroff. They like his past major-league experience and envision him seeing time in the outfield, given the relative inexperience and early injuries (Harrison Bader) surrounding the unit.
The names above are likely to switch early and often since the Cardinals will be in need of as much bullpen depth as possible. But Liberatore, and potentially Moroff, are two players the team is leaving spring training increasingly excited about.