Cardinals recall top OF prospect O'Neill

The St. Louis Cardinals recalled outfield prospect Tyler O'Neill, optioning right-hander John Brebbia to Triple-A Memphis in a corresponding move.

O'Nell made his major league debut against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday, striking out as a pinch hitter for starting pitcher Luke Weaver in the fifth inning.

O'Neill, 22, is considered among the top prospects in the Cardinals' organization. The power-hitting outfielder, acquired from the Seattle Mariners last summer for promising pitching prospect Marco Gonzales, was off to a hot start at Memphis, hitting .388 with six home runs and a Pacific Coast League-leading 18 RBIs after being limited to 12 at-bats in spring training due to oblique and hamstring injuries.

O'Neill has 107 home runs across 467 minor league games, twice eclipsing 30 for a season (2015, '17).

He could serve as insurance if starting center fielder Tommy Pham misses serious time with a groin injury suffered Tuesday night against the Cubs. Pham, who passed a variety of tests on the injury Wednesday, was held out of the team's lineup Thursday, with Harrison Bader starting in his place.

"I thought it would be better if we gave him (Pham) a day," manager Mike Matheny told reporters before the game. "It's something he was feeling, so we'll try to avoid pushing it if we can. But the trainers feel very confident."

Brebbia, 27, has posted two scoreless appearances for the Cardinals this season, striking out three in two innings.

--Field Level Media

04/19/2018 16:17

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