Yadi among All-Classic Team standouts

Along with Hosmer, pair selected unanimously to field of 12 honorees

Yadi among All-Classic Team standouts

Following a thrilling World Baseball Classic that culminated in the United States winning its first title thanks to Wednesday's 8-0 win over Puerto Rico, World Baseball Classic, Inc. (WBCI) announced the All-World Baseball Classic Team.

From the champions, tournament Most Valuable Player Marcus Stroman of the Blue Jays (2.35 ERA, six-plus scoreless innings in final), Eric Hosmer of the Royals (unanimous choice) and Christian Yelich of the Marlins were selected. Stroman, as WBC 2017 MVP, joined Japan's Daisuke Matsuzaka (2006 and '09) and the Dominican Republic's Robinson Cano (2013) as MVPs in Classic history.

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Manny Randhawa is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MannyOnMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cardinals tab Martinez to start on Opening Night

Cardinals tab Martinez to start on Opening Night

JUPITER, Fla. -- Any lingering suspense about who would get to throw the first pitch against the defending World Series champion Chicago Cubs faded on Wednesday, when manager Mike Matheny pulled Carlos Martinez into his office before the team took the field and delivered a message in Spanish.

Martinez emerged from the room as the team's Opening Night starter.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Waino: Martinez starting opener 'easy decision'

Cardinals veteran hopes strong bounceback season will put him in conversation next year

Waino: Martinez starting opener 'easy decision'

JUPITER, Fla. -- Insisting that he wouldn't "want anything I haven't earned," Adam Wainwright graciously congratulated Carlos Martinez on being named the team's Opening Night starter, a title that had belonged to Wainwright for the past four seasons. Martinez pitched five shutout innings Wednesday in the Cardinals' 6-1 win over the Nationals, his first start since returning from the World Baseball Classic.

"I think he earned it with the way he pitched last year, and the year before that," Wainwright said. "Vice versa, the way I pitched last year, I didn't earn that. I thought it was well-deserved."

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Garcia's big bat backs Martinez's 5 scoreless

Garcia's big bat backs Martinez's 5 scoreless

JUPITER, Fla. -- Max Scherzer finished 4 2/3 innings in his Grapefruit League debut, but Cardinals infielder Greg Garcia stole the spotlight to help St. Louis to a 6-1 victory over Washington at Roger Dean Stadium on Wednesday.

Garcia, who legged out an inside-the-park home run in the team's last game, tallied three more extra-base hits, including a pair off Scherzer. His first-inning triple positioned him to score on a Matt Carpenter sacrifice fly, and he drove in a run with an RBI double in the fifth.

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Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

For his son's birthday, Fowler's dad shares great throwback photo

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For his son's birthday, Fowler's dad shares great throwback photo

Dexter Fowler has developed something of a reputation for sharing adorable glimpses of his daughter on his social media pages, just as he did when showcasing how excited she was about him joining the Cardinals back in December. 

It would appear as if that penchant for sharing wonderful memories and moments on the internet spans generations. On Wednesday, Fowler celebrated his 31st birthday, and it was an occasion for his father -- going by "PapaJFowler'"on Twitter -- to share this as an homage to his son:

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Adams plays outfield for first time since Little League

Slugger searching for playing opportunities; Tuivailala optioned

Adams plays outfield for first time since Little League

JUPITER, Fla. -- After weeks of shagging fly balls to familiarize himself with the outfield, Matt Adams took the experiment into live action on Wednesday during the Cardinals' 6-1 victory over the Nationals.

After coming in as a pinch-hitter, Adams replaced Randal Grichuk in left field to begin the sixth. He played four innings there, but hardly got involved. After fielding a leadoff single, Adams didn't have another ball hit his way. It was his first time playing the outfield in any game since he was a Little Leaguer.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hudson among top prospect performers

Hudson among top prospect performers

J.D. Davis is heating up at the perfect time. As the season draws near, hits are coming in bunches for the Astros' No. 13 prospect.

The 23-year-old third baseman went 3-for-4, his first three-hit game of Spring Training, in Houston's 8-4 win over the Twins on Wednesday.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards have high hopes for performance department

Cards have high hopes for performance department

JUPITER, Fla. -- A little more than a year ago, Dr. Robert Butler left his position as a clinical scientist and assistant professor at Duke University to accept the task of reshaping how the Cardinals organize their medical and strength/conditioning operations.

By bringing all of these areas under one umbrella, the Cardinals envisioned the potential for a competitive advantage. In the same way sabermetrics once changed the landscape of player evaluation, the Cards saw the creation of a performance department as baseball's potential next frontier.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards powerful as Martinez hits 4th spring HR

Cards powerful as Martinez hits 4th spring HR

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Alberto Rosario hit a go-ahead RBI single in a two-run seventh inning and Jose Martinez hit his fourth homer of the spring as the Cardinals rallied for a 12-6 win over the Astros on Monday night at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches.

Martinez, who launched a two-run blast in the fourth inning, scored on Greg Garcia's inside-the-park homer in the eighth inning. Martinez and Garcia added RBI singles in a four-run ninth as they both finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Cardinals on Monday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Leake battles control in road start vs. Astros

Leake battles control in road start vs. Astros

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Road warrior Mike Leake battled rare control problems in the Cardinals' 12-6 win against the Astros on Monday night. All five of Leake's starts this spring have been on the road, but he struggled at his home away from home.

Making his second start at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, Leake gave up four runs on five hits and issued three walks over five innings. His previous outing here was much better, a 7-1 win over the Nationals, in which Leake threw four innings of one-hit ball. He struck out two without issuing a walk in that outing.

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Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yadi keeps Netherlands on its toes in semis

Yadi keeps Netherlands on its toes in semis

LOS ANGELES -- Monday's World Baseball Classic bout between Puerto Rico and the Netherlands -- won by P.R., 4-3, in 11 innings -- didn't waste any time providing exciting action, and Yadier Molina was right in the middle of it.

The Netherlands learned firsthand why Molina is considered among the best defensive catchers in the game, as the Cardinals' star threw out two Netherlands baserunners in the first inning.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lucas among cuts as Cardinals' trim roster

Lucas among cuts as Cardinals' trim roster

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Right-hander Josh Lucas was among several players the Cardinals reassigned over the last two days, but according to manager Mike Matheny, Lucas' future appears bright.

Lucas was reassigned to Minor League camp along with lefty Zach Phillips on Sunday. In addition, right-hander Rowan Wick and outfielder Anthony Garcia were optioned to Triple-A Memphis.

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Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

First inning of Netherlands-Puerto Rico had it all

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First inning of Netherlands-Puerto Rico had it all

Monday's World Baseball Classic matchup between the Netherlands and Puerto Rico pitted two loaded clubs against each other at Dodger Stadium, with the winner set to face either the U.S. or Japan in Wednesday's championship game (9 p.m. ET on MLB Network/MLB.TV).  

Anybody who's seen some of the recent World Baseball Classic games knows there's definitely a lot of emotion on the field, and Monday's game was no exception -- right from the get-go, too.

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Adams' 4th HR backs Lynn's scoreless start

Adams' 4th HR backs Lynn's scoreless start

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Right-hander Lance Lynn scattered four singles through five scoreless innings and Matt Adams hit his fourth homer and scored twice, leading the Cardinals to a 5-2 win over the Braves on Sunday at Champion Stadium.

Lynn struck out three, walked one and did not allow more than one hit in any inning or any Braves baserunner to reach third. He improved to 1-1 through four starts this spring, lowering his ERA to 1.29 over 14 innings.

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Zak Kerr is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Molina the straw that stirs PR's drink

Molina the straw that stirs PR's drink

LOS ANGELES -- It all started with a group text chat organized by team leader Yadier Molina.

Before they took the field together in the World Baseball Classic, the Cardinals' star catcher assembled his Puerto Rican teammates virtually, in a chat where they would get to know each other throughout the offseason.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rotation to feature Wacha to open season

Order is not yet decided; Cards righty has a 2.65 ERA over five spring starts

Rotation to feature Wacha to open season

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- A decision that had been hinted at for weeks became official on Sunday when manager Mike Matheny confirmed that Michael Wacha will begin the season in the Cardinals' rotation.

Wacha will join Carlos Martinez, Adam Wainwright, Lance Lynn and Mike Leake in an all-righty rotation. The Cards have yet to reveal how they will order the five to begin the season, or who will start the team's season opener in two weeks.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pham searching for swing, Cards roster spot

Outfielder hasn't been able to dial in mechanics at plate

Pham searching for swing, Cards roster spot

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- An Opening Day roster spot may be slipping away for Tommy Pham, who has been stuck searching for his swing instead of using Spring Training to showcase it.

Pham entered camp in strong position to make the Cardinals' roster as a fourth outfielder, but he did little to solidify his standing. Instead, Pham has been toying with swing changes and waiting for something to click, all the while watching Jose Martinez have a standout camp.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lyons debuts for Cardinals with one inning

Lefty not expected to be ready for Opening Day

Lyons debuts for Cardinals with one inning

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With an earlier-than-anticipated return from offseason surgery, Tyler Lyons threw one inning in his Grapefruit League debut on Sunday, two weeks ahead of the team's first regular-season game.

It's still unlikely that Lyons will be ready for that opener, but he's positioned himself for a possible summons later in April by working his way back to game play as quickly as he did. Four months after undergoing surgery to address a right knee injury that ended his 2016 season in July, Lyons allowed two runs on two hits in a 5-2 win over the Braves. He also walked one and struck out one.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Adams taking reps in the outfield

First baseman shed 30 pounds this offseason

Adams taking reps in the outfield

JUPITER, Fla. -- When his package of gloves arrived from Rawlings this spring, Matt Adams found exactly what he had ordered: A pair of first baseman's mitts and … an outfielder's glove?

"Just in case," Adams said.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wacha reflects on experiencing Tebowmania

Mets outfielder went 1-for-2 with a strikeout against right-hander

Wacha reflects on experiencing Tebowmania

JUPITER, Fla. -- A day after playing against the Cardinals' Class A Advanced team, Mets Minor Leaguer Tim Tebow moved his work into the stadium, giving the Cardinals' Major League club its first look at the former Heisman Trophy winner.

"That's quite a call-up, right?" manager Mike Matheny joked before the club fell, 5-4, to the Mets on Saturday.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards option Weaver to Triple-A Memphis

Send reliever Harris to Minor League camp

Cards option Weaver to Triple-A Memphis

JUPITER, Fla. -- The Cardinals cleared two more lockers in their big league clubhouse on Saturday by optioning starter Luke Weaver to Triple-A Memphis and reassigning reliever Mitch Harris to Minor League camp. The moves leave St. Louis with 51 players (including 16 non-roster invitees) in big league Spring Training.

Weaver, St. Louis' No. 3 prospect according to MLB.com, entered camp with the opportunity to push himself into consideration for the fifth spot in the Cards' rotation. He never did. Weaver exited his second Grapefruit League appearance due to back tightness and was subsequently sidelined for the next 10 days.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wacha strikes out four against Mets

Wacha strikes out four against Mets

JUPITER, Fla. -- Robert Gsellman delivered five solid innings Saturday in his bid to become the Mets' fifth starter, while Michael Wacha solidified his own rotation standing with four solid innings for the Cardinals in the Mets' 5-4 win at Roger Dean Stadium.

Battling Seth Lugo and Zack Wheeler for the fifth starter job, Gsellman held the Cardinals to one run -- a Randal Grichuk RBI single -- in five innings, striking out three.

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Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards 'open for business' for Yadi extension

Mozeliak responds to Bengie Molina's comments regarding his brother's future in St. Louis

Cards 'open for business' for Yadi extension

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Yadier Molina is entering the final guaranteed year from the extension he signed with the Cardinals in 2012, and while there is a $15 million mutual option that could prolong the relationship through '18, it's not a guarantee that Molina would exercise it.

His future in St. Louis thus remains uncertain, and Bengie Molina, the older brother of the Cardinals icon took to the airwaves this week to address the situation. In an interview on SiriusXM's MLB Network Radio, Bengie indicated that the Cards and Yadier are not close to reaching a contract extension, and he suggested that his brother would not exercise his option for 2018.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Waino, Cardinals take vet's tough start in stride

Right-hander 'very confident that things will be good' by Opening Day

Waino, Cardinals take vet's tough start in stride

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- After Wilmer Flores rounded the bases celebrating a grand slam, Adam Wainwright walked off the mound, unable to finish two innings in a start he hoped would last five.

His final line on Friday was both ugly and uncharacteristic: 1 2/3 innings, 10 runs, seven hits, four walks, two wild pitches and not one strikeout. It took Wainwright 71 pitches to collect five outs in what would unravel into a 16-2 loss to the Mets.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bader among top prospect performers

Bader among top prospect performers

Michael Kopech continues to rack up the strikeouts and put together his most electric performance in a White Sox uniform on Friday afternoon against the cross-town rival Cubs.

Kopech -- the No. 16 overall prospect and No. 3 in the White Sox system -- used his upper-90s fastball to strike out five in two innings. The 20-year-old gave up just one hit and struck out the side in the seventh, his second inning of work. He also gave credit to his catcher, Geovany Soto, for the dominant outing.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Garcia tallies RBI in Grapefruit League debut

Pham gets stitches in lip after slide; Cards mum on Opening Day starter

Garcia tallies RBI in Grapefruit League debut

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- After acquiring his work visa in Haiti earlier this week, Jose Adolis Garcia made his Grapefruit League debut on Friday and tallied his first RBI in the team's 16-2 loss to the Mets.

Garcia, a Cuban defector, has been working out with the Cardinals since signing on Feb. 24. He was not permitted to appear in big league Spring Training games, however, until that work visa was in hand.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.