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David Aardsma declines to exercise opt-out clause with Cardinals

May 16, 2014, 10:40 PM EDT

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The Cardinals signed reliever David Aardsma to a minor league contract near the end of March. Aardsma, who had spent spring training with the Indians, was given an opt-out date of May 15 in the deal. MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch reports that Aardsma has chosen to stay with the Cardinals with their Triple-A affiliate in Memphis.

Aardsma, 32, has enjoyed good results in the minor leagues thus far, owning a 1.59 ERA along with a 15/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings. That Aardsma has chosen not to exercise the opt-out clause could indicate that he’s confident he’ll get a chance to contribute out of the Cardinals’ bullpen sooner rather than later. That could mean the roster spots belonging to Seth Maness or Eric Fornataro could be vulnerable.

  1. mscxvd - May 16, 2014 at 10:48 PM

    Pat neshek and Maness are the best arms in the bullpen right now with a 2.70 era. I doubt maness will be sent down. more likely fornataro or siegrist are the two most likely to be sent back.

    • fearlessleader - May 16, 2014 at 11:17 PM

      Fornataro is already in Memphis. Maness’s ERA doesn’t reflect how badly he’s been banged around in a handful of his outings; he’s been a lot better lately, but if he can’t consistently keep his pitches down to induce ground balls, he’s an extra-base hit waiting to happen. I’d be surprised if Siegrist went anywhere, even though he hasn’t been as sharp yet in 2014 as he was in 2013.

      Great to see Martinez and Rosenthal looking like their rookie selves again tonight!

      • paperlions - May 17, 2014 at 11:25 AM

        Seigrist has been really good: 12.5 K/9. He’s been a little unlucky in balls in play. He was never going to repeat last year’s crazy performance with 98% LOB and a 0.45 ERA.

        I do think Maness is “coming along”. He looks to me like he’s trying to increase his ability to strike guys out to combine that with the high GB%. He’s using his slider more, but his control and movement on his FB and change aren’t as good as they were last year. If he can get the GB rate back up to 60% or more, he’ll be a fine bullpen piece.

        Seems like a lot of guys (Martinez, Rosenthal, Miller, Lynn) are having control problems related to mechanics. Most of them, when they miss, they always miss the same way…Miller flies open a lot and Rosenthal keeps getting under his fastball, leaving everything up….those things should be fixable.

  2. dcarroll73 - May 16, 2014 at 11:17 PM

    I have always liked Aardsma, and I really hope he does great (up until the Giants clash with the Cards.) I have always wondered (due to family background) whether ‘Aardsma’ is a Welsh name. Does anyone on HBT know?

    • fearlessleader - May 16, 2014 at 11:23 PM

      I’ve read that Aardsma is usually a Dutch surname. Just not quite enough double consonants and unpronounceable syllables to be Welsh. :)

  3. beepbeepbeeplgb - May 17, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    siegrist? are u smoking crack? he’s going nowhere.

  4. ud1951 - May 17, 2014 at 12:04 PM

    Surely Aardsma knows something we don’t but unless one of the bullpen arms not named Freeman or Rondon gets hurt, it is hard to see the Cardinals (1) trading, DFA or outright release someone from the 40 man roster and (2) promote him to send down either Maness or Siegrist. Freeman and Rondon are holding spots on the 25 man roster for Jaime Garcia and Jason Motte both of whom could be activated very soon.

    Perhaps the team has asked him to wait to ensure Motte is as healthy as he’s looked or that Garcia can actually pitch two or three games in a row without further injury. That might make the team think about someone else as a starter and there are some (let’s say, Hispanic) names in the bullpen right now who have started before, whom Aardsma could easily replace in the 8th inning/high leverage role (ok, one name).

  5. straightouttavtown - May 17, 2014 at 7:08 PM

    Pretty sure Aardsma would be in the discussion to close games for the Astros or the Mets right now. Dumb decision to ride buses in triple-a on his part

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