The Cardinals are promoting right-hander Angel Rondon to the active roster prior to today’s game with the Reds, according to Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat (via Twitter). Rondon is already on the 40-man roster, and the corresponding move to add him to the active roster isn’t yet known.
An international signing from the Dominican Republic in 2016, Rondon is set to make his big league debut at age 23. He has a 3.15 ERA and 22.8% strikeout rate over 371 innings in the minors, though he has a 5.32 ERA over 23 2/3 innings at Triple-A Memphis this season, which marked his first taste of Triple-A action. Most of Rondon’s struggles at Triple-A, however, came in his first two starts, and he has been solid enough over his last three outings that the Cards will give him a look in the majors.
It’s quite possible that first look could come in the starting rotation, given the Cardinals’ injury problems. Jack Flaherty and Miles Mikolas are both on the injured list, and Kwang Hyun Kim made an early departure from last night’s game due to back tightness. Rondon could be used as a long reliever until more is known about Kim’s status, and if Kim also has to hit the IL, Rondon can slide right into the rotation.
MLB Pipeline ranks the right-hander as the 10th-best prospect in the St. Louis farm system, citing Rondon’s curveball and fastball as plus pitches. That heater can hit 97mph but usually sits in the mid-90’s, and Pipeline’s scouting report notes that Rondon’s “delivery creates natural deception, which often helps his fastball play above its velocity.”