LOS ANGELES -- The Cardinals will open their annual instructional league in Jupiter, Fla., next Thursday. Among those scheduled to participate are seven of the top 14 picks from the Cardinals' 2012 Draft class.
Instructional league allows for players to work on specific teaching points with several coaches upon the end of the Minor League season. The league runs from Sept. 20 through Oct. 14 and includes six games against Minor League players from the Mets' and Marlins' organizations.
Of the Cardinals' two first-round picks in the June amateur Draft, only James Ramsey -- ranked 18th among the team's top prospects -- will be participating. The other, Michael Wacha, the team's No. 7 prospect, is still playing with Double-A Springfield, which is one win away from the Texas League championship. The Cardinals do not want Wacha, who pitched 113 1/3 collegiate innings before being drafted, to take on any additional workload this season.
Also highlighting the instructional league roster are third baseman Patrick Wisdom, catcher Steve Bean and third baseman Carson Kelly, ranked as the Cardinals' No. 11 prospect. In all, 19 pitches, four catchers, 11 infielders and nine outfielders will be participating.
Three of the organization's Minor League managers -- Mike Shildt, Oliver Marmol and Steve Turco -- will be among the group of coaches to provide instruction.