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Is Cardinals draft pick Stephen Piscotty a hitter ... or a pitcher?

With their third pick in the MLB draft, the selection the Cardinals received as compensation for the loss of Albert Pujols to free agency, they took a corner infielder ... or did they take a pitcher?

Junior Stephan Piscotty, 6-foot-3, 218 pounds,  hit .336 in 170 games for Stanford. This season he is hitting .318 with three homers and five triples. He has 55 RBIs in 57 games played. Primarily a third baseman, he has 11 errors with a .908 fielding percentage.

Piscotty appeared in 12 games so far this season as a pitcher, four of them as a starter. He's got a 6-2 record with a 3.05 ERA with 46 hits allowed in 41 1/3 innings. He's struck out 20 and walked nine batters.

Whitey Herzog would have loved this kid. On April 4 in a game against St. Mary's Piscotty started the game at third and moved to the mound as a relief pitcher in the eighth inning and got two outs before returning to third base for the ninth. St. Mary's tied the game and Piscotty was summoned to the mound a second time to pitch three extra innings.

ESPN's Keith law projected that Piscotty could go as high as the 24th pick to the Red Sox. So the Cardinals eagerly snapped him up when he was still there when it was their turn to use the 36th pick -- a sandwich round selection. Piscotty said in an interview after his selection that he was surprised the Cardinals took him because he was in contact with teams further down the line. Piscotty said he was excited to be taken by St. Louis. 

"I've heard really good things about the Cardinals," Piscotty told reports.

According to MLB.com: "Piscotty has an easy swing with good bat speed, making consistent, hard contact and hitting to all fields. He's shown raw power to all fields as well as  with some added strength there could be more there."

The Redbirds are expected to use Piscotty as an infielder. But there's always room for a mop up man since Aaron Miles has moved on.



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