The Cardinals purchased the contract of catcher Austin Romine from Triple-A Memphis, the team announced today. In a corresponding move, the club optioned catcher Ivan Herrera to Memphis. Romine is in the starting lineup for the Cardinals tonight in the opener of a four-game series against the Braves.
The Cardinals will be the fifth team in the last four years for the longtime-Yankee-turned-journeyman. Since leaving New York following the 2019 season, Romine suited up for the Tigers in 2020, the Cubs in 2021, and the Angels for a three-game stint earlier this season. He opted out of his minor-league pact with the Angels on June 1st and signed with the Cardinals a few weeks later. He’s a career .238/.276/.357 hitter but has generally graded out as an above-average backstop.
Herrera struggled in his first taste of the big leagues, notching a .111/.190/.111 batting line in limited action behind Andrew Knizner, but remains a consensus top-five prospect in the St. Louis system. He’ll return to Memphis, where he’d hit a robust .291/.388/.436 in 129 plate appearances before an injury to Yadier Molina forced him to the majors. The timeline on Molina’s return remains very much unclear, so he could be back in St. Louis in short order if Romine fails to produce or either he or Knizner suffer an injury.