Yesterday's Box Scores
Diaz was 2-for-4 while playing SS, and had a round tripper -- his 4th of the season, and a grand slam at that. That raises his season line to .247/.300/.378. It's a line that clearly below what he did last season in 34 games. However, last season was largely BABIP-driven -- .341 -- and his walk rate is up to a nearly-respectable 6%, and his K% down to 14.8%. It's a small improvement for a player that the Cardinals clearly have diminished hopes for after DFA'ing him just over a week ago, but his July line is .351/.385/..649 in 11 games so perhaps he's finally making strides. That said, he'll be 25 in a month and he still hasn't earned a spot in AAA.
I often think of Tilson as having recently broken out after struggling initially, but in fact, he's been successful every season since returning from the shoulder injury that kept him out of the 2012 season. After struggling in 31 games following his promotion to AA last season, Tilson has gotten back to hitting, going 1-for-3 with a double and a walk last night. His season line is now .301/.358/.392. He's still a player who is boosted primarily by his BABIP -- .336 this year -- but his BB% rate is up to a solid 8.3% and his K% is down to 11.9%, both significant improvements from his stops at both PB and Springfield last year. He also has 30 SBs this season, against 11 CSs.
Oxnevard made his second start for the GCL Cardinals, going two innings, surrendering one hit, one walk, and no runs. He struck out one batter. It's very similar to his first outing (H, BB, 0ER, K), but the Cardinals had the 8th round pitch a second inning. Obviously, they're bringing the 18 year old along slowly, which is pretty common in the organization, and in baseball as a whole.
Rivera was a 7th rounder in the 2013 class, part of a group of raw SSs including Oscar Mercado and Malik Collymore. However, after spending some time at SS, 2B, and 3B last season, he has now played 10 games behind the plate this year, catching 5 of 14 would-be base stealers. As I recall, Rivera was considered to have a strong arm for 3B, so a move behind the plate makes some sense. The 20 year old still has some growth to do AT the plate though, as his 0-for-3 night has him hitless in his last 11 ABs. His season batting line of .216/.310/.486 does indicate some power and possibly potential as a TTO type, but with just 41 PAs this season, it's impossible to reach any definitive conclusions.
Tonight's games include a start from Daniel Poncedeleon, last year's 9th round pick. It'll be his 3rd appearance with Palm Beach, after posting a 3.46 FIP for Peoria in 76 2/3 IP. At PB he has a 2.38 ERA and 2.74 FIP going into today's game.