St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Austin Gomber

(Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports)

Austin Gomber, Juan Yepez Named Cardinals Minor League Players Of The Month

Gomber is currently with the big league club and Yepez is leading all of MiLB with a .442 batting average.

May 03, 2018 - 3:18 pm

ST. LOUIS, Mo., May 3, 2018 – The St. Louis Cardinals announced left-handed pitcher Austin Gomber and first baseman Juan Yepez (YAY-pez) have been honored as the Cardinals Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Month for April for their accomplishments on the field.

Gomber, 24, the Cardinals fourth round (135th overall) selection out of Florida Atlantic University in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft was 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA over four starts covering 25.2 innings at Memphis (AAA). 

Related story: Austin Gomber Follows The Leader With New Role In Cardinals Bullpen

The Winter Garden, Fla., native ranked 8th among Pacific Coast League pitchers with 27 strikeouts in the month of April fueled by matching the Memphis club record for strikeouts in a game when he fanned 16 at Iowa on April 23 during 8.0 scoreless innings of six-hit ball tossing 112 pitches. 

On April 29, Gomber was recalled to St. Louis and will make his Major League debut when he makes his first appearance with the Cardinals.

“Austin highlighted the month of April with his start against Iowa,” complimented Cardinals Director of Player Development, Gary LaRocque.  “He worked eight innings striking out 16, and with that performance earned Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Week honors as well.”

Yepez, 20, was acquired by the Cardinals from the Braves in a trade during May 2017 in exchange for Matt Adams.  The young corner infielder had a successful April batting a Midwest League-leading .438 (32-73) with a home run and 18 RBI to go with seven doubles, two triples and a .494 on-base percentage at Peoria (A). 

The Venezuela-native currently leads all of Minor League Baseball with a .442 batting average, which is also 83 points higher than his closest competition in the Midwest League.  The right-handed batting Yepez has reached base safely in every game since April 13, hit safely in 17-of-21 games with 12 multi-hit efforts including a four-hit game at Beloit (4/25), a grand slam vs. Wisconsin (4/13) and two triples in a game vs. Cedar Rapids (4/10).  Yepez is batting .442 at home and .441 on the road, and has a .583 batting average (14-24) with runners in scoring position.

“Juan’s outstanding April started quickly, earning Midwest League Player of the Week honors for Peoria, and continued with strong offensive production for the entire month,” said LaRocque.

Gomber is a three-time Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month award winner taking honors also in August of 2015 (Peoria-A) and August of 2017 (Springfield-AA).  This is Yepez first honor as a member of the Cardinals.