Some of the top prospects in baseball will take center stage tonight as the Arizona Fall League will feature it’s annual Fall Stars Game. The St. Louis Cardinals will have four representatives–Harrison Bader, Paul DeJong, Carson Kelly, and Rowan Wick.
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Prior to driving in a run to help the Glendale Desert Dogs to a 5-1 victory on Friday afternoon, Bader dialed into St. Louis Baseball Weekly to discuss the honor and his season.
“You’re surrounded by tremendous talent,” said Bader. “You get to work counts and work on your pitch selection and everything I told myself I’d work on out here. That’s exactly what I’m trying to do. The stuff is really good, the level of talent and level of play is definitely a step above.”
The Cardinals third round draft pick in 2015 out of Florida, the 22-year old Bader had a six-game hitting streak earlier in the Fall League and enters the weekend with a .306 batting average, a home run, and seven runs batted in.
He’s also been successful on three of five stolen base attempts.
“It was a rough year stealing for me, for sure this past season,” shared Bader, who was 13 of 26 stealing combined between playing at Springfield (AA) and Memphis (AAA).
“I don’t know what it was, I couldn’t really figure it out so part of my approach out here was definitely just to take advantage of getting the best jumps I can, getting the reads. Obviously, the games matter of course, and the outcomes matter, but you’re out here working on stuff. I’m definitely being more aggressive. I’m definitely getting out there more to try and grab a bag here and there.”
Thus far, Bader has spent the bulk of his time at the corner outfield spots, playing only one game in centerfield.
“I’ve always said, I have a devastating changeup so I’m waiting to show that off on the mound,” joked Bader when asked if there were any other positions in the works. “No, I’m strictly an outfielder.”
First pitch of the Fall Stars Game is set for 6:08pm CT and will be broadcast on MLB Network.
photo credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports, Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports