St. Louis Cardinals Notes: Joe Kelly

The St. Louis Cardinals have transferred Chris Carpenter to the 60-day DL from the 15-day DL, in a move that only helps the team and means nothing else. Carpenter has already missed 60 games this year, so this move just gives the Cards more flexibility. He can activated at any time, and this doesn’t change how the Cardinals view how long he will be out for.

Mar 12, 2012; Jupiter, FL. USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher

He’s still a long way back, so he isn’t going to be activated any time soon even though it has been 60 days and he can be reactivated at any time. It means more Lance Lynn, but that’s something we can all deal with given how well he’s pitched this year. He’s no Carpenter, but I’m sure nobody is going to complain about the job Lynn has done this year.

In more impactful news, the St. Louis Cardinals have optioned utility player Steve Hill to Triple-A and purchased the contract of right-hander Joe Kelly from Triple-A. The move to demote Hill is to allow Kelly to make his Major League debut today against the Cleveland Indians, who were shut down by Kyle Lohse and the Cardinals yesterday.

Kelly isn’t exactly a strikeout artist, but that’s because he is a sinker-baller who gets a lot of grounders and keeps it in the park. He’s not a bad pitcher and has a 2.86 ERA in Triple-A this year in just over 70 innings. Kelly gets a lot of movement on his sinker, and it’s the reason why he should be successful at least early on this season. Hitters will adjust to him, but he should have some early success.

The thing is that Kelly, who also possesses a nice slider to go with that very good sinker, is a better reliever than starter. Last year’s third rounder won’t do terrible in replacing the injured Jaime Garcia, but Cardinals fans shouldn’t hope for Lynn-like replacing. Still, Kelly could impress with a lot to prove, such as his future as a starter or set-up man at the MLB level. Here’s to hoping he succeeds with that sinker of his.

Steve Hill can play at first, catcher, or as a corner outfielder, but he isn’t exactly a good player and his main asset is that versatility. In over two weeks with the club, Hill managed to get only seven at-bats. So far at Triple-A Memphis, he has a .303 OBP this year but has shown some decent power with four homers and a .471 slugging percentage.

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Topics: Chris Carpenter, Cleveland Indians, Jaime Garcia, Joe Kelly, Kyle Lohse, Lance Lynn, St Louis Cardinals, Steve Hill

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