It was standing room only behind the batting cage as the St. Louis Cardinals bullpen catchers, Jamie Pogue and Kleininger Teran, squared off in a home run derby before Saturday night’s game against the New York Mets.
Teran got on a run early and built a 5-2 lead as they alternated turns in the cage, but Pogue rallied for a narrow 6-5 victory.
“It was a good contest, a good showing,” commented Mike Matheny. “Those guys work all day long for us, it was fun. A good chance for them too. I think we take that for granted–these guys who never played in the big leagues are on this field every day and they’ve never once been able to take a swing out here. I think that’s pretty special, plus it’s just fun for the guys.”
The competition didn’t come about by accident, but rather some setting up of the two.
“I think it might have been Yadi that was starting to talk smack between them–for them,” explained Matheny on the origin. “Those are two very quiet guys that just love showing up to work everyday. I think it was somebody else doing all the talking of who would win in a home run derby, so sooner or later it had to happen.”
Both Pogue and Teran had plenty of time to prepare as over the last few weeks, both geared up for the contest.
“I would sneak down to the cage when we’d get here real early and I’d hear guys hitting and wonder who in the world was there that early and found out it was our bullpen catchers,” confirmed Matheny.
No home run derby is imminent for the rest of the coaching staff, but the manager handicapped that John Mabry and Bill Mueller, the two hitting coaches, would likely have the advantage.