Leave it to the folks at Elias, who were able to dig through 79 years of games for the last time the St. Louis Cardinals had a rookie that tripled and belted a pair of home runs in the same game. Back in 1936, it was Don Gutteridge who had the honors. Today, it was Stephen Piscotty, who’s 3-4 performance drove in five of the runs as the Cardinals beat San Diego 10-3.
“That’s not something that I’m consciously trying to do,” answered Piscotty about whether a recent power display was the result of his revamped swing. “It’s something that I know I have the ability to do. As soon as you start thinking about the mechanics–especially up here, you’re done. I’m just trying to react up there. Whatever swing I have that day is what I’m going to compete with.”
The approach of reacting and not thinking has been paying off for Piscotty, who is now batting .324 with 4 HRs and 18 RBIs in 105 ABs since making his ML debut on July 21st.
Where does the hot start of Piscotty rank? To put things in some kind of perspective, Albert Pujols hit .367 in his first 107 ABs and Stan Musial batted .352 in his first 105 ABs. Matt Holliday (.299 in 107 ABs), Jason Heyward (.276 in 105 ABs), and Matt Carpenter (.259 in 108 ABs) show a broader range.
Chicago Cubs rookie Kris Bryant was at .291 through his first 103 ABs.
“Talking with John Mabry and Bill Mueller and how much they’re enjoying working with him,” said Mike Matheny during the last homestand. “A lot of times as a teacher/coach you’re kind of stuck in the spot where what kind of capacity does this particular player have? What kind of desire do they have to learn and kind of figure things out. Stephen’s been really open, one, available and then he can take what they’re working on and apply it. Any teacher would want that. They’re getting a lot of work with Stephen. He’s responding extremely well. He’s learning. He’s learning quick. He’s a quick study.”
–Following Saturday night’s loss, the Cardinals optioned pitcher Tyler Lyons back to Memphis (AAA) and recalled Greg Garcia. Lyons had pitched 1.1 innings on Saturday. The move also allows the team to provide a break for Kolten Wong at second base–where Garcia started on Sunday.
Garcia had appeared in 13 games this season with St. Louis and was batting .265 (13-49) over the last couple weeks in Memphis since his last option to the affiliate.
photo credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports