Molina Has Helped Reyes

Blossoming thanks to Yadi.
Blossoming thanks to Yadi.

Cool story in the four-letter about how Alex Reyes is coming of age.

The rookie pitcher for the Cardinals has shined, both as a starter and as a reliever. Yesterday, he had a key win over the Cubs at Wrigley to help keep the Cardinals’ wild card hopes alive.

Mark Saxon of BSPN writes the suits with the Cardinals didn’t want to promote Reyes because they were skittish about his control and high pitch-counts. Those seemed to have been curbed by the tutelage of Molina.

Reyes’ walk rate was nearly five per game in the minor leagues, and he had a 4.96 ERA in 14 Triple-A starts. The last thing the Cardinals can afford as their season teeters in these final games is another flame-out in their rotation, particularly from another one of their high-ceiling prospects. They have already removed Luke Weaver from their rotation for now.

That’s why Saturday’s 10-4 win over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field was such an important test for Reyes. The Cardinals got a good, up-close look at how he adapts to stress and whether he can fix his mechanical breakdowns.

“He’s a young guy, but he looks like a veteran,” Molina said. “When he’s on the mound, he’s fearless. He doesn’t get scared, and he just tries to figure out how to make pitches. Today he was facing a tough offense, and they were battling him tough today, but he didn’t back down.”

This is all good stuff. And it makes sense. Molina is one of the smartest catchers there is. He calls a wonderful game. Of course he would be able to guide a rookie much better than some hack from the minors.

It’s also why Joe thought it was foolish for the Cardinals to overreact with Luke Weaver’s one bad game last week because Carson Kelly caught him in that game, not Molina.

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