Much-anticipated power arrives for Heyward

Much-anticipated power arrives for Heyward

JUPITER, Fla. -- Hours after his manager laughed off concern about Jason Heyward not yet having registered an extra-base hit this spring, the right fielder blasted his first -- all the way onto the porch of the team complex beyond the right-field wall.

It was a show of power that the Cardinals have been waiting to see, but one they also knew would come. Heyward did actually connect for an extra-base hit before Thursday, but it was erased from the stat sheet when rain kept Monday's game from becoming official.

Heyward's solo shot

"There wasn't much of a doubt about that one," manager Mike Matheny said of Heyward's blast off Miami's Henderson Alvarez in St. Louis' 5-3 loss.

While the extra-base hits haven't been piling up, Heyward has been getting on base regularly since the start of Grapefruit League play. He has hit safely in 10 of 13 games played.

"I haven't really thought about it," Heyward said. "Going into 2010, that Spring Training I hit one home run and then I hit 18 in the season. Big whoop. I'm just excited about my progression and getting ready for the season."

Other news and notes from the day at Cardinals camp:

• The Marlins swiped two bases while Kevin Siegrist was on the mound in the ninth, again highlighting some of the troubles Siegrist has in being quick enough to the plate. He made some mechanical adjustments this spring to try to speed up his delivery.

"He got a little longer today for some reason," Matheny said. "I don't know if he's trying to put a little more [velocity] on it or exactly what it is. I think he was thinking a little more about his stuff. Those are things that we hadn't seen much from him this spring."

Matt Carpenter returned to the lineup a day after leaving a game early due to a right quad contusion.

• With their only split-squad games of the spring on Friday, the Cardinals will divide their Major League coaching staff in order to have both games monitored. Matheny said he expects to take third-base coach Jose Oquendo, assistant hitting coach Bill Mueller and bullpen coach Blaise Ilsley with him to Viera, Fla. Back in Jupiter, bench coach David Bell will manage. Pitching coach Derek Lilliquist, hitting coach John Mabry and first-base coach Chris Maloney will fill out that staff.

• Matheny said the Cardinals will likely start one of their Major League pitchers in next Friday's exhibition game against the Triple-A team in Memphis. If the starting pitchers stay on schedule, Jaime Garcia would line up to start that night.

The Cardinals, who will take their full 25-man roster and perhaps a few extras on the barnstorming trip, are expected to also feature several of their starting position players in the lineup. Memphis announced on Wednesday that general seating for the game has already been sold out.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.