Masyn Winn, wearing a Springfield Cardinals baseball uniform, runs off the field at the end of an inning during a game at Hammons Field.
Two years after blossoming into a rising prospect in Double-A at Hammons Field, shortstop Masyn Winn has been the St. Louis Cardinals’ most consistent offensive player this season. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

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Memorial Day Weekend is a milestone in the baseball world, with enough games in the bank to start drawing conclusions about the direction of the season.

For the St. Louis Cardinals, a 23-26 record entering a holiday weekend series against the Chicago Cubs is hardly anything to celebrate. At least things seem headed in the right direction as the Cardinals have won eight of their last 10 and are within realistic sight of first-place Milwaukee.

Helping fuel the charge has been a collection for former Springfield Cardinals, surprisingly not named Jordan Waker and Victor Scott II. Those two seemingly cannot-miss prospects began the season as starting outfielders in St. Louis but struggled at the plate and were demoted to Triple-A Memphis a month ago.

Fortunately, some others who spent summers at Hammons Field have stepped up, showing how important it is to have prospects ready.

Winn brings consistency to the St. Louis lineup

Masyn Winn (left) and Jordan Walker, both 20 years old and drafted in 2020, are top prospects in the St. Louis Cardinals organization. (Photo: PJ Maigi, Springfield Cardinals)
As Masyn Winn (left) has been a mainstay at the big-league level in 2024, his friend and 2022 Springfield Cardinals’ teammate Jordan Walker is looking to regain his hitting stroke at Triple-A Memphis. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

The biggest impact of the young hitters for the big-league Cardinals is shortstop Masyn Winn. The 22-year-old with a rocket of a right arm, who took a big leap in his progress during the 2022 season in Springfield, has been the team’s most consistent player to this point with a .295 batting average and his first two major-league home runs coming in the last week.

Winn got some experience late last season, called up to St. Louis as the team was well out of contention. He hit only .172 in 122 at-bats, but it was a good learning experience that Winn has turned into a positive this season.

Both catchers thrived at Hammons Field

Not far behind Winn in having an impact is catcher Ivan Herrera. The 23-year-old, who hit 17 home runs while spending the 2021 season at Hammons Field, became St. Louis’ starting catcher after Willson Contreras suffered a broken arm on May 7.

Herrera is hitting .280 with three home runs and, just as important, he seems to be working well with a staff of veteran starting pitchers. The Cardinals showed confidence in Herrera by naming him the starter and not seeking a veteran via trade, even though Contreras is projected to be out until after the All-Star break.

Making it an all-recent Springfield catching duo, Pedro Pages is serving as Herrera’s backup. Pages was known for his defensive ability and leadership during the 2022 and ’23 seasons at Springfield, but his bat started to develop as he hit 16 home runs last season before a late promotion to Memphis.

Ivan Herrerra, wearing a Springfield Cardinals uniform, runs toward first base after hitting the ball during a game at Hammons Field.
Ivan Herrera, from the Springfield Cardinals Class of 2021, is serving as the St. Louis Cardinals’ everyday catcher after the injury to starter Willson Contreras. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

Burlison, Donovan and Gorman also contributing

Brendan Donovan, wearing a Springfield Cardinals uniform, prepares to hit the ball during a game at Hammons Field in Springfield, Missouri.
Brendan Donovan went from a 50-game stop at Hammons Field in 2019 to a major-league Gold Glove award winner in St. Louis, where he leads the Cardinals with 23 RBIs this season. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

Alec Burlison, Brendan Donovan and Nolan Gorman all spent part of the year-after-COVID 2021 season with Springfield. Burlison hit 14 home runs in 63 games that season, Gorman had 11 home runs in 43 games and Donovan hit four in 50 games.

Gorman started this season like most of his St. Louis teammates, with more strikeouts than hits, but has started to heat up in the last week with a tie-breaking home run on Wednesday against Baltimore. Burlison has worked into the everyday lineup in left field or at designated hitter and has five home runs and a .298 average. Donovan, a Gold Glove winner as a utility player in 2022, has a St. Louis-leading 23 RBIs while bouncing between several positions.

The young Cardinals’ offensive contributions have been magnified as veterans Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado are enduring sharp downturns in power, with a combined 7 home runs and 38 RBIs. 

Bullpen getting a boost from a trio of former Springfield Cardinals

Kyle Leahy, wearing a Springfield Cardinals uniform, pitches the baseball during a game at Hammons Field in Springfield, Missouri.
Kyle Leahy has turned in three consecutive scoreless relief outings for the St. Louis Cardinals during the team’s 8-2 stretch. Leahy spent 2021 and most of the 2022 season with the Springfield Cardinals. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

On the mound, the Cardinals’ bullpen is led by Ryan Helsley (Springfield bullpen in 2017 and ’18). Helsley has been established at the top of the bullpen for a while in St. Louis, but has shown a new level of consistency with a National League-leading 15 saves.

A lesser-known Springfield alum has also pitched in nicely of late. Kyle Leahy was 0-8 for the 2021 Double-A Cardinals before rebounding to 10-7 in a career-saving 2022 season. Called up to St. Louis due to injuries earlier this month, Leahy has thrown 5 ⅔ scoreless relief innings over his last three appearances.

Earlier this week, relief pitcher Ryan Loutos became the 135th former Springfield Cardinal to make it to the big leagues. Loutos pitched for Springfield in 2022 and could see his first time on the Busch Stadium mound this weekend.

Walker, Scott in Triple-A working on swings

Victor Scott II, wearing a Springfield Cardinals uniform, runs to first base after hitting the ball during a game at Hammons Field in Springfield, Missouri.
Victor Scott II tore through Double-A with Springfield in the second half of 2024 and won a starting outfield position with St. Louis out of spring training. After a slow start, he’s at Triple-A Memphis. (Photo by Springfield Cardinals)

Meanwhile, Scott and Walker are in Triple-A trying to regain their swings. Walker, who turned 22 on May 22, is hitting .307 but has yet to hit a home run for Memphis in 58 at-bats. His power swing has been a mystery ever since the Cardinals sent him down in April of 2023 to work on getting more launch angle.

Scott seemed to get too much of an uppercut into his swing as he went 5-for-59 in 20 games to open the season in St. Louis. Things haven’t been much better at Memphis where he was hitting .183 in 93 at-bats, though he does have 12 stolen bases.

Walker and Scott were extremely popular players during their time in Springfield, both for their on-field performance and friendly interaction with the fans. Hopefully, they will be able to rejoin the big-league Cardinals and help other Springfield alums to make it an interesting summer in St. Louis.

Springfield Cardinals top prospect update

The Springfield Cardinals wrap up their longest homestand of the season (13 games) this weekend, facing the Tulsa Drillers. St. Louis’ No. 1 minor-league prospect Tink Hence is scheduled to be the starting pitcher at 7:05 p.m. on May 24 against the Dodgers’ Double-A team.

Hence is 3-2 with a 3.18 earned run average and is coming off one of his best games — six innings allowing four hits and two runs, with two walks and nine strikeouts on May 19 against Midland.

Springfield finds itself out of first place for the first time this season after its 9-3 loss on May 23 to Tulsa. The Cardinals (23-19) trail the Arkansas Travelers (Mariners Double-A) by one-half game.

Springfield Cardinals homestand

  • May 21 — Springfield 7, Tulsa 6
  • May 22 — (doubleheader) Tulsa 7, Springfield 1; Tulsa 5, Springfield 3
  • May 23 — Tulsa 9, Springfield 3
  • May 24 — Springfield vs. Tulsa, 7:05 p.m.
  • May 25 — Springfield vs. Tulsa, 6:35 p.m.
  • May 26 — Springfield vs. Tulsa, 6:05 p.m.

Tickets are available at the Hammons Field box office, on the Springfield Cardinals website or by calling (417) 863-2143

Lyndal Scranton

Lyndal Scranton is a Springfield native who has covered sports in the Ozarks for more than 35 years, witnessing nearly every big sports moment in the region during the last 50 years. The Missouri Sports Hall of Famer, Springfield Area Sports Hall of Famer and live-fire cooking enthusiast also serves as PR Director for Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, Missouri and is co-host of the Tailgate Guys BBQ Podcast. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @LyndalScranton. More by Lyndal Scranton