(Jupiter, FL) Despite a great amount of rainfall over the last day, the practice fields at Roger Dean Stadium were ready to go as the St. Louis Cardinals continued Spring Training workouts on Sunday morning.
“They did such a nice job with the drainage on these,” complimented Mike Matheny. “Even after some more rain this morning–I was a little concerned. Got out here and checked it out and everything’s good to go.”
Michael Wacha, Jaime Garcia, Zach Petrick, Matt Belisle, Seth Maness, and Miguel Socolovich had live pitching practice to batters on Field 3 while Tim Cooney, John Gast, Mike Mayers, Randy Choate, Kevin Siegrist, and Nick Greenwood took to the mound on Field 4.
The workload was similar for the pitchers, but how they went about it was slightly altered as they simulated pitching an inning and then came off to rest while another pitcher went out.
“Just kind of changing it a little bit in that regard,” said Matheny. “The intensity has been high, we have been real impressed with how the guys have gone about their business everyday we’ve been here. Intensity isn’t really an issue, it’s more getting them exposed to game-like situations.”
GRICHUK BACK TO SWINGING
–After being kept out of Spring Training workouts the last couple of days to receive treatment for back tightness, Randal Grichuk was back in the cages for “controlled” swings this morning. Provided no setbacks, he is expected to be full go tomorrow.
MORE ON EMERGENCY BACK-UPS
–The work behind the plate has not yet begun for Greg Garcia and Pete Kozma–or Ty Kelly, who caught in high school. The trio will be among those who get some experience at the position in case they are called upon as an emergency catcher.
“Basically, we’re not going to be putting them in our catcher’s drills,” explained Matheny. “We just want to get them in the cage and make sure it’s a self-defense training to where they’re not going to get hurt. We’ll have them padded up in the proper places to make sure we’re not going to subject them to lessening their chance of making our club by an injury that happens.”
At least initially, the players will not be catching any bullpen sessions.
“Not at the beginning, it might be something we do later on,” said Matheny. “It’s very valuable to them and I’ve been very clear with the group, when it comes down to us making that roster there’s some things that we do have to have a little back up on.
“Part of that is the fact that we have a hole if we bring Yadi out of the game early or we use up our catching, we need somebody on the field that knows how to do it and can at least defend themselves and we’re not going to get hurt.”
Besides his catching duties on the day, Molina fielded a few grounders at first base alongside Matt Adams.