Taveras and Maness earn April Minor League honors

The St. Louis Cardinals announced their Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Month for April by honoring right-handed pitcher Seth Maness and outfielder Oscar Taveras for their accomplishments on the field.

Taveras, 19, a non-drafted free agent signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2008, batted .340 (32-94) with 6 HR and 21 RBI during the month of April at Springfield (AA).  His 17 extra base hits ranked 8th in all of Minor League Baseball and his 21 RBI were tied for the most in Double-A and led all of the Cardinals affiliates.

The left-handed swinging outfielder, played last season in Low-A Quad Cities and was declared the Midwest League batting champion after at-bats were added to his non-qualifying total plate appearances to register the highest mark.  Taveras is rated as the No. 3 prospect in the Cardinals organization by Baseball America.  He was the Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month for July last season.

"Oscar worked extremely hard during spring training on improving all aspects of his game," explained Cardinals Farm Director John Vuch.  "It's gratifying to see that hard work carry over into success in the regular season after making a challenging jump from low-A to Double-A."

Maness, 23, the Cardinals' 11th round selection out of East Carolina University in the 2011 first-year player draft, posted a 3-0 record and an 0.67 ERA in four starts allowing just two earned runs over 27.0 innings pitched at High-A Palm Beach during April.  The right-hander did not walk or hit a batter all month, as the only way on base was via the 21 hits he allowed.  His 0.67 ERA ranked the sixth lowest in all of Minor League Baseball.

"Seth has performed extremely well for us since being drafted last June," said Vuch.   "His combination of excellent control and ability to induce ground balls has enabled him to have success at each level he's pitched with us, and he has gotten off to a solid start so far this season."