The St. Louis Cardinals have officially announced their Opening Day roster for the 2018 season, which includes both Jordan Hicks and Yairo Munoz, who are set to make their MLB debuts.
The Cardinals also formally recalled Jack Flaherty from Memphis (AAA) and purchased the contract of catcher Francisco Pena.
To make room on the active roster, pitcher John Brebbia was optioned to Memphis (AAA) while infielder Breyvic Valera and pitcher Josh Lucas were designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Hicks and Pena.
Even in his first live throwing session against hitters, Hicks turned heads with his triple-digit velocity and movement. After being demoted from big league camp for tardiness, the 21-year old returned to allow four hits and strike out six batters in a combined 6.2 innings against Miami and Washington in Grapefruit League play.
Last season, Hicks spent time in Peoria (A) and Palm Beach (A+) where he compiled a record of 8-3 with a 2.74 ERA. He started 19 of 22 games and struck out 95 batters in 105.0 innings pitched.
It hasn’t even been a full three years since the Cardinals drafted Hicks and he visited Busch Stadium for the first time.
Impressive in his own right this spring, Brebbia struck out 16 batters in 9.2 innings pitched. Of his nine outings, seven were scoreless with only five hits allowed. Brebbia gave up four runs in an appearance against Houston on March 9th and then a pair of solo home runs allowed March 25th against Washington.
Lucas also put up strong numbers, not allowing any runs as he struck out 12 batters in 11.1 innings. Valera hit .160 (4-25) and played 59 of his 63 innings at second base.
PITCHERS (13): 67 – Matt Bowman-RHP, 27 – Brett Cecil-LHP, 32-Jack Flaherty-RHP, 49 – Jordan Hicks-RHP, 55 – Dominic Leone-RHP, 70- Tyler Lyons-LHP, 18 – Carlos Martínez-RHP, 59 – Mike Mayers-RHP, 39 – Miles Mikolas-RHP, 26 – Bud Norris-RHP, 64 – Sam Tuivailala-RHP, 52 – Michael Wacha-RHP, 7 – Luke Weaver-RHP
CATCHERS (2): 4 -Yadier Molina, 46 – Francisco Peña
INFIELDERS (7): 13 – Matt Carpenter, 12 – Paul DeJong, 35 – Greg Garcia, 3 – Jedd Gyorko, 38 – José Martínez, 34 – Yario Muñoz, 16 – Kolten Wong
OUTFIELDERS (3): 25 – Dexter Fowler, 23 – Marcell Ozuna, 29 – Tommy Pham
DISABLED LIST (3): 44 – Luke Gregerson-RHP (10-day, left hamstring strain), 29 – Alex Reyes-RHP (10-day, right elbow), 50 – Adam Wainwright (10-day, left hamstring strain).
photo credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports; Brian Stull/STLBaseballWeekly.com