What follows is The Redbird Daily’s selection for The Cardinals’ April players of the month award. Each month we will give you one position player and one pitcher that had the most productive month in the organization.
Here are our winners for the month of April.
Hitter Of The Month – Luke Voit: Memphis – 1B, Age 26
April 2017 Stats: 75 AB, 7 Doubles, 1 Triple, 5 HR, 16 RBI, 11 BB, 19 RBI, 1 SB, 51 Total Bases, 360/448/680/1.128
Wow, Luke Voit wasn’t messing around during his debut month at Memphis. This 6’3 235 pound-listed(He’s bigger than 235. He looks about 250 of pure muscle in person) behemoth of a man has exploded onto the Pacific Coast League scene.
Quick Aside: Can you imagine if Voit would have been able to stick at catcher? Man, that would have been a sight.
Voit’s success is more than just the flash in the pan-type that starts red hot at the beginning of the first month of the season, yet fizzles out by the end of the month. Voit is hitting .400 in 35 AB with 2 HR, 9 RBI, 2 BB, with 5 K over his last 10 games . There is actually reason to believe that he has getting better since the beginning of the month.
Earlier this week the Cardinals moved Anthony Garcia off of the 40 man roster, and the move was somewhat downplayed as a move to clean up the 40 man. That might be true, but I think we all know John Mozeliak well enough to know that this is a guy who doesn’t make a roster move unless he sees the potential of another move on the horizon. I wouldn’t be surprised if the former Wildwood, Mo resident and Missouri State Alum found his way into that 40 man spot if either the Cardinals offense sputters again or Matt Carpenter‘s defense at 1st base stays exactly the same as it is right now.
Pitcher Of The Month – Jack Flaherty: Springfield – RHP, Age 21
April 2017 Stats: 5 Starts, 32.1 IP, 0.56 ERA, 2 ER, 4 BB, 28 K, .191 AVG Against, 0 HR Allowed
I cannot remember a more dominant month of pitching at the minor league level off of the top of my head than what Flaherty has done this April. Luke Weaver had a stretch at Springfield last season that was close, but even that wasn’t as dominant as Flaherty’s April. It has nothing short of miraculous.
Digging deeper into his April, 4 of Flaherty’s 5 starts have gone at least 6 innings. 3 of his 5 starts have been scoreless outings and he hasn’t allowed more than 1 run in either of the other two starts. Flaherty isn’t walking anybody and he’s striking out plenty.
Flaherty has been completely in control on the mound. He is throwing, nay, commanding, four pitches on all quadrants of the strike zone. The ball looks free and easy coming out of his hand and his poise is that of someone who is years older than he is. Also, hitters can go ahead and forget about squaring the ball up on him. Needless to say, there isn’t much hard contact against Flaherty.
This is even more encouraging because exactly one year ago a 20 year old Jack Flaherty was beat around in 4 April starts for Palm Beach to a tune of an ERA of 6.46 while holding hitters to a batting average of 313. I bring all of this up to accentuate the fact that this is a different kid pitching than he was a year ago. This is a man on the mound. He’ll be pitching in Memphis in no time if he keeps this up.
Thanks for reading!