St. Louis Cardinals: Two Players Impact the Dominican Republic WBC
The St. Louis Cardinals have two current players named to the roster of the defending World Baseball Classic champions, Dominican Republic.
These St. Louis Cardinals players are pitchers Carlos Martinez and Alex Reyes. Former Cardinal catcher Alberto Rosario is also on the roster. The team as a whole features a lot of talent. With a lineup headlined by Robinson Cano and Manny Machado. They certainly have the talent to repeat their winning ways from 2013. Tito gives a more in-depth look at the tournament as a whole here.
Rosario, 30, got forty-one plate appearances last year in the majors with the St. Louis Cardinals. He hit .184 with two doubles. He doesn’t look to be anything more than a backup catcher to Wellington Castillo. There is also a chance that in a pinch Carlos Santana puts the gear on for the first time since 2014.
The two pitchers from the St. Louis Cardinals will certainly make an impact. Martinez, along with Johnny Cueto will be at the forefront of the Dominican starting rotation. Even with a star-studded lineup, the rotation is just as strong. Martinez is coming off a year where he struck out 174 with an ERA of 3.04. With an average fastball velocity in the upper 90’s, he is certainly a dominant pitcher.
In the back half of the rotation, Reyes will be making an appearance. The number-seven prospect in baseball is someone to be excited about for the Dominican Republic team and the Cardinals organization as a whole. In five starts over twelve appearances, Reyes had a record of 4-1 with a 1.57 ERA in his first season of major league experience.
This Dominican Republic is in set up in Pool C along with the teams from Canada, Columbia, and the United States. Each of those teams have plenty of talent, but the Dominican team certainly is poised to make another run at a championship.
Machado and Cano are just the tip of the iceberg for the hitting talent. There are huge power threats in Adrian Beltre, Nelson Cruz, and Jose Bautista to worry about too. Hanley Ramirez can’t be forgotten either.
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The rotation is just as strong as it goes. They have starters like Martinez, Reyes, Cueto, and Edison Volquez. That stated, their relievers, such as Dellin Betances, Jumbo Diaz, Jeurys Familia, and one of the most popular names in the game, Bartolo Colon make their pitching superb.
With Cardinals potentially taking on a huge role on the mound there is plenty of opportunity for the team to make its mark in the World Baseball Classic for the Dominican Republic.
It looks like a huge contribution at the plate most likely will not happen from Rosario. He is a journeyman catcher who has barely cracked the Majors, and really did not produce.
On the mound however, two of the most exciting pitchers in St. Louis will be taking the mound. That is undoubtedly where the presence of the Cardinals will be felt. And it will be felt in a big way. Martinez has proven himself to be an excellent talent, and Reyes has shown he can be the same.
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The World Baseball Classic starts on March 6th and will go until the 22nd. This will be a good way to see how Reyes stacks up against the world’s top talent before his official rookie year. By all indications, along with Martinez, the St. Louis Cardinals should not disappoint for the Dominican Republic team as they seek another title.
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