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Cardinals shut down Luke Weaver and a look at 2014 draftees

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Taking a quick look at the results for 2014 Cardinals draft picks in their first few months of pro baseball.

Miami Herald

Last night, Jenifer Langosch over at MLB.com reported that the Cardinals were shutting down top pick Luke Weaver for the season after just 9.1 innings for the Palm Beach Cardinals:

The decision to end Weaver's season after his Aug. 8, start for Palm Beach was not all that unexpected or unusual for an organization that closely monitors the innings count of all their first-year players. Weaver had already thrown 106 1/3 innings at Florida State University before the Cardinals made him the 27th-overall pick in June.

It was clear from the way Weaver was being handled that he was on an innings cap of 110-120 innings this season as he'd not thrown past the 4th inning in any of his 6 starts on the year, 4 of which came with the GCL Cardinals and 2 with Palm Beach. Weaver's peripherals were solid (26.1% K, 8.7% BB, 3.63 FIP) but his starts in Palm Beach were nothing to write home about after dominating GCL hitters over 6 innings.

So how are other 2014 draft picks faring so far this season?  I'm glad you asked, let's take a look at a few of them:

Jack Flaherty, RHP, Round 1(s) #34:

2014 GCL Cardinals: 13.2 IP, 1.98/2.42 ERA/FIP, 32.1%/3.6% K/BB

Flaherty was the big bonus baby for the Cardinals this season, signing a contract over the slot amount, and so far he looks to have been worth it.  Very good fastball and excellent command and when you look at how a couple of the other first round HS arms have fared this year, the Cardinals look to have gotten two of the better ones based on how they've fared so far.  That would include this next pitcher as well...

Ronnie Williams, RHP, Round 2, #68:

2014 GCL Cardinals: 26.1 IP, 5.47/3.12 ERA/FIP, 17.9%/6.0% K/BB

Both Williams and Flaherty have shown excellent command of their stuff as high school arms in their first stint in the pros, something Tyler Kolek (14.3% BB) and Kodi Medeiros (15.1% BB) have not been able to do thus far.  That does bode well for them moving quickly up the ranks, as most of the high school arms the Cardinals have selected the last half decade have been able to do (Miller, Reyes, McKinney, Kaminsky, etc.)

Daniel Poncedeleon, RHP, Round 9, #285:

2014 State College: 34.1 IP, 3.15/2.18 ERA/FIP, 25.5%/8.3% K/BB

Poncedeleon has been better than expected for State College -- a senior sign who was left in a lurch in 2013 after coming out as a junior and failing his physical after he's already hired an agent and signed a contract. He likely fell in the 2014 draft due to his failed physical and is probably 3rd or 4th round talent and certainly has shown no injury issues throughout college or the minor leagues thus far.

This was a good pick by the Cardinals for a lot of reasons, signability among them, and he's pitched well enough that he should be a mainstay in a full season rotation for 2015.

Andrew Sohn, SS, Round 6, #195:

2014 State College: 43 PA, .324/.405/.486, 9.3% K, 2.3% BB, .479 wOBA

Sohn was off to a great start before he injured his right elbow near the end of June and was placed on the 7 day disabled list and has yet to return. I don't know much more about the injury, so hopefully it's nothing serious since he'd really hit the ball well prior to getting hurt. Add another one to the stack of SS depth the Cardinals seem to have brewing in the lower minors.

Darren Seferina, 2B, Round 5, #165:

2014 State College: `177 PA, .308/.367/.390, 23.2% K, 9% BB, .371 wOBA

Seferina was described as the "poor man's Kolten Wong" when he was drafted, and he's been pretty much exactly that since joining the Spikes. Lots of contact, swiping a few bags here and there (14 thus far, against just 3 CS), and playing solid defense at the keystone.  Lots to like here from this 20 year old; another good athlete with bat-to-ball skills for the Cardinals. He doesn't have the ability to hit for power the way we've seen Wong emerge this season, so perhaps a better comp would be to someone like Breyvic Valera.

Casey Turgeon, 2B, Round 24, #735:

2014 Johnson City: 226 PA, .328/.431/.471, 12.4% K, 13.7% BB, .424 wOBA

While a bit old for Rookie ball at age 22, Turgeon's peripherals looks pretty good for a late round draft pick out of college.  Solid power (.143 ISO) from a middle infielder and walking more than you strike out at any level is an impressive feat. I'd expect Turgeon to get a full season roster spot next year so the club can see what they have in him, but he's been nothing but solid thus far.