JUPITER, Fla. – Cardinals hitting prospect Oscar Taveras figures to
reach the Major Leagues soon, possibly as early as sometime this
And in his first big league camp this spring, the No. 3 overall ranked
prospect in baseball by MLB.com will have quite the mentor to help him
The Cardinals plan to have the 20-year-old Taveras work in hitting and
fielding drills this spring with six-time All-Star Carlos Beltran, who
enters the second year of a two-yer deal with the club.
“That was put in place a long time ago that they are going to be
spending a lot of time together,” manager Mike Matheny said. “They
will be spending a lot of time together.”
Beltran won the American League Rookie of the Year in 1999 and is a
career .282 hitter with 334 home runs and 1,243 RBI in 15 big league
seasons. The 35-year-old Puerto Rico native hit .269 with 32 home runs
and 97 RBI in 151 games with the Cardinals last year.
Taveras, a native of the Dominican Republic, is ranked as one of the
top five prospects in all of baseball by nearly every national
publication. The outfielder hit .321 with 23 home runs, 37 doubles,
seven triples and 94 RBI in 124 games for Double-A Springfield last
“I saw him last year and honestly I think he’s a good ballplayer, a
good hitter,” Beltran said. “I’m looking forward to working with him.
We’re here competing but at the same time, I know what I can do so I
always feel that when I’m here at Spring Training, I feel like I can
help a younger guy to become a better ballplayer. I have always done
Taveras figures to start the 2013 season in Triple-A but could get
promoted to St. Louis at some point during they year. He will get an
extended look in Grapefruit League games this spring due to Beltran
leaving for the World Baseball Classic.