Staying Aggressive

Cardinals have Miller make a start in low Class A





ST. LOUIS True to their trend of aggressive promotions, the Cardinals will start Shelby Miller at low Class A Quad Cities in hopes he'll be a starter there next year.

Miller, the Cardinals' first-round pick in June, visited Busch Stadium for the red-carpet treatment before shipping off to Quad Cities in time for a playoff push. Miller won't immediately be on the active roster, but the plan is get him into the bullpen eventually so he can make a cameo or two.

"We want him to ultimately join the Quad Cities club and get a chance for them to see how close he is to being ready to pitch," general manager John Mozeliak said. "He'll do a handful of bullpens and we'll evaluate accordingly. The approach is really more with us looking at next year."

Miller, 18, is the first high school pitcher taken in the first round by the Cardinals since 1991, and the franchise had recently developed a reputation for treading cautiously and adhering to slot when picking in the first round. The club's pass on Rick Porcello in 2008 remains a frustration, even with some internally.

Miller becomes an emblem of a fissure in that perception. Shortly after the Cardinals signed international teen Wagner Mateo to a $3.1 million deal, they signed Miller to a $2.875 million deal. That's the second-most given to a drafted player by the Cardinals.

"There has been a lot of talk about us not having a legitimate No. 1 pitching prospect in our system, and that we shy away from high school pitchers," farm director Jeff Luhnow said. "I have maintained all along that we're looking for No. 1's and we're not staying away from high school pitchers. This is the right guy. This is the right guy for us."

REDBIRD CHIRPS

• The Cardinals cancelled their instructional league for this fall in Jupiter, Fla., due in part to the lack of opponents in the area and an organizational discussion about the benefit of the offseason camp.

• Among the Cardinals' selections for the Arizona Fall League were three players looking to make up time lost to injury. Bryan Anderson, though scheduled for shoulder surgery, was instead encouraged by team doctors to try rehab to heal the joint and he'll go to Arizona to continue his recovery. Mike Parisi is coming back from Tommy John surgery, and outfielder Daryl Jones, a Futures Game participant, has missed time with knee trouble.