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The Cardinals are promoting top prospect Kolten Wong

Aug 15, 2013, 11:00 PM EDT

Kolten Wong AP

Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch confirms that the Cardinals are promoting top prospect Kolten Wong from Triple-A Memphis. He will join the team in Chicago tomorrow. In a corresponding move, the Cardinals will option Adron Chambers to Memphis.

Wong was drafted by the Twins in the 16th round of the 2008 draft, but did not sign, opting instead to play at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. The Cardinals drafted him in the first round (22nd overall) of the 2011 draft. The 22-year-old started the year at Triple-A, where he has posted an .835 OPS with 10 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 463 trips to the plate.

Wong may get regular playing time at second base, which would push Matt Carpenter to third base and David Freese to the bench.

In other Cardinals top prospect news, outfielder Oscar Taveras will undergo season-ending surgery on his ailing ankle.

  1. okwhitefalcon - Aug 15, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    “Wong is expected to take his normal position at second base, pushing Matt Carpenter to third base and David Freese to the bench.”

    This is more than likely going to happen at some point, it’s just speculation for now.

    Stand down.

    • Bill Baer - Aug 15, 2013 at 11:19 PM

      Yeah, I should have used less absolute phrasing. Here’s another article that makes a similar suggestion:

      • stevequinn - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:46 AM

        That is exactly what will happen. Carpenter is hitting and Freese isn’t. Wong to 2B and Carpenter to 3B just as you stated.

        Steve Quinn
        St. Louis

      • okwhitefalcon - Aug 16, 2013 at 1:14 AM

        It will happen eventually, but it’s hardly “absolute” present day as Bill pointed out in his follow up post.

        It’s a speculative scenario – for now.

        No more no less.

    • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 7:31 AM

      The Cardinals don’t always make smart moves….but bringing up Wong to sit him on the bench would be monumentally stupid. Carpenter has been their best position player this year. He isn’t sitting. Wong CAN’T play any position but 2B. Replacing Freese in the lineup with Wong has the potential to upgrade both the offense and defense, as Carpenter is a better defender than Freese, Wong is reportedly plus with the glove, a far better base runner than Freese (not setting the bar high there), and can’t hit much worse than Feese has.

      As a group the defense this year has been horrible, a bunch of slow and old or unathletic guys at the corners. There is no team speed at all.

      I didn’t think Freese would be replaced until next year, with him almost certainly serving as trade bait….but there is no scenario that makes sense here that doesn’t involve Freese spending a lot of time on the bench, maybe facing only LHP, with both Carpenter and Wong in the lineup against righties….even though Freese has almost no R/L split whatsoever, perhaps Wong does. Carpenter does, but he still hits LHP better than Freese has.

      • stlouis1baseball - Aug 16, 2013 at 8:38 AM

        With Freese not hitting (seems to ground into a DP every 1/3 AB)…
        This was just a matter of time. But like you, I didn’t expect it until next year.
        Your on point about the team speed. Wong playing second (and allowing Carpenter to play 3rd) should help in this regard.

      • Francisco (FC) - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:10 AM

        With a team in playoff contention, waiting might have been a luxury.

      • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:34 AM


        Kozma has been a disaster at the plate all year. I think the only reason he still has a job is because he is one of their few plus defenders….but I am wondering if playing him is any more at all is a luxury they can’t afford. While solid, his defense is not a game changer like Iglesias/Simmons…he gives every bit of his defense back while at the plate. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Ryan Jackson or Greg Garcia given a chance, each is considered good with the glove by scouts….and it is nearly impossible to hit worse than Kozma has the last few months. Cardinal pitchers have outhit Kozma since June (I wish I were kidding).

      • jeffthomasb - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:11 AM

        It’s been tough watching Freese at the plate this year. At one point he’d geared it up a bit, but he’s become a hole in the lineup again. And having him bat behind Holliday with someone on first has been scary, with the amount of DPs those two have hit into. Bringing Wong into the scenario should light some fires. BTW– shame Chambers didn’t have much bat, ’cause that dude could motor. Some very much needed speed there.

      • Francisco (FC) - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:42 AM

        Kozma has been a disaster at the plate all year.

        I see that his August slash line looks like John McDonal’s 2013 slash line, YIKES. (The odd thing? John McDonald has actually been IMPROVING with the Phillies! *shudder*)

      • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:45 AM

        …and Kozma has the “benefit” of 7 IBB this year (3 of them in August) as well as a number of BB of the unintentional-intentional variety to get to the pitchers spot. He’s actually been WORSE than his triple slash suggests.

      • Francisco (FC) - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:55 AM

        Kozma seems to fit the definition of the term: Cratered. Has his defense been good at least?

      • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:58 AM

        Oh yeah, defense has been very good. He doesn’t make the flashy play, but he has solid range, a really strong arm, is great at coming on on the ball, and fantastic at turning double plays (which is key, because with their horrible defense as a team, there are guys on base all the time)…..he just gives all of that value back at the plate. Currently has an fWAR of -0.1

      • gibbyfan - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:29 AM

        Going back to the concept of Whitey Ball –emphasising speed and defense I would like to see the cards package Freeze and Holiday to try to get a solid SS…………Holiday has a lot a value but I dont believe I have ever seen a worse fielder…………….be great in the AL as designated hitter —how about Texas—what would it it take to pry away their prized young SS –Holiday, Freeze, Lynn……….

      • okwhitefalcon - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:43 AM

        Holliday has a full no trade, he’s not going anywhere.

      • blues1988 - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:57 AM

        really gibby fan? get rid of the birds hottest hitter holliday? good call. man holliday haters are annoying.

      • gibbyfan - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:36 AM

        Hey Blues—Not a Holiday hater at all –Nothing in my post said that. Sorry that you were annoyed but what annoys me are people who respond to posts without first reading them……Holiday is the hot hitter only recently–also hits into an inordinate amount of double plays. I actually like and admire the guy –he is truly a beast-But not to great defensively at all–but as I mentioned in my post in terms of maybe trying to get faster and better defensively (ie Whitey Ball) maybe we could try to get a top notch SS. In order to do that we would need to give up ssomething of value which Holiday obviously is……..I’m not sure how that makes me a hater.

    • bigmeechy74 - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:00 PM

      He may have been a bit presumptuous but it’s not like he is totally wong about it

  2. vr30 - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    I don’t see anything wong with this move

  3. giantboy99 - Aug 16, 2013 at 1:02 AM

    Freese to the Yanks in the off season.

    • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 7:34 AM

      Well, Freese to somebody….considering the current state of 3B, there may be multiple interested parties…though, I rather doubt he would bring much in trade.

      • okwhitefalcon - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:15 AM

        I suspect Freese could be a part of a package in a big game hunt for a SS, speculating of course.

        I don’t think Jackson or Garcia get any run at SS unless something goes (more) wrong with Koz and or Descalso.

        Derrick Goold went in depth on the “Jackson’s a better fielder” notion in his last chat (I’ll see if I can find the link). Paraphrasing/summarizing, the speed of the game passed Jackson and he’s less than adequate, Koz has utilized his arm strength and ability to “make all the plays” and perform at a higher level over a long period of time.

        As for Jackson’s bat, he’s hasn’t had an XBH since June and is hovering around the .200 mark since.

      • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:32 AM

        Garcia’s bat has come around since a very slow start. Since June Kozma has been an overall disaster. Through May he had a WAR near 1.0 because the bad was below average and the defense was good…since then it has gone down to -0.1 because the bat has been 12 kinds of horrible…and he’s getting too much credit for his OBP because of hitting 8th and getting free passes to bring up the pitcher (not sure why teams are still doing that, the pitchers hit as well or better than Kozma…much rather have Maness or Kelly hitting in a key situation than Koz)…..sadly, there is really no down side to sending Kozma down.

        With respect to Jackson’s defense….the Cardinals don’t mind playing Descalso at SS and he is a HORRIBLE SS…HOR-RI-BLE….while being only bad at 2B or 3B….there is a 0% chance that Jackson’s defense at SS is worse than Descalso (of course, there is also a 0% chance his bat is as good as Descalso’s or as bad as Kozma’s).

      • okwhitefalcon - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:53 AM

        Apparently the Cardinals don’t buy the “0 chance” theory on either – that’s been made eminently clear to this point.

        Could that mindset change? Sure.

        As for Garcia, he’s been moved to 2B in lieu of Wong’s promotion – Jackson will be getting the majority of the reps at Memphis until seasons end.

        There’s obviously no in house long term solution, they all pretty much stink.

      • paperlions - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:29 PM

        I’m not sure why the FO thinks Descalso can play SS…they never thought so in the minors. He has a great arm, but his range is lacking and his hands aren’t great.

        Probably the most unfortunate minor thing to happen last year was the team deciding not to drop Kozma from the 40-man.

        Every scouting report I read on Garcia and Jackson STILL likes their defense more than they liked Kozma’s…and both have hit more in AAA than Kozma ever did.

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  7. digbysellers - Aug 16, 2013 at 8:11 AM

    Can we please trade Jody Sanchez as well? Apparently he’s already made over $2,000 so he can cover his own flight out of town.

    • danwilliamsmlb - Aug 16, 2013 at 8:38 AM

      Yeah, but he really hates spammers, so he can’t be all bad, right?

  8. materialman80 - Aug 16, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    Freese had him moment in the sun for sure, but he has faded at the plate badly.

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