OMG: St. Louis Cardinals
Here’s the Cards’ Top 10 and, as always, OMG (One More Guy) from their system:
Eduardo Sanchez, RHP: Signed out of Venezuela in December 2005, Sanchez spent his first three seasons moving slowly, but in 2009-2010, he’s picked up the pace, pitching at two levels in each season (he went back to Double-A last year after finishing there in 2009).
Listed at 5-foot-11, 170 pounds, Sanchez doesn’t look like much, but then you see him throw. He’s got a power arsenal perfect for the back end of a bullpen. He can get his fastball up into the upper-90s and he’s got a pretty nasty power slider to go with it. He’s struck out 9.9 per nine innings in his career (9.8 in 2010, but 10.3 once he moved up to Triple-A). Right-handed hitters didn’t stand a chance against him last year, hitting just .157 against him, thanks largely to that slider (Lefties hit a much more robust .293).
He’s shown he doesn’t flinch in pressure situations and calmly retired the side in order at the Futures Game last July. His biggest issue has been command/control as he’s given up a few too many walks over the course of his career. At his size, people will always worry about his endurance and durability. He’s had a good spring and is still sort of in contention for one of the open bullpen spots. Even if he goes down to Triple-A Memphis, where he could get some more closing experience, he should be ready to help out in St. Louis at some point this season.