Results tagged ‘ Dennis Martinez ’

Prospect Q&A: Cardinals RHP Jordan Swagerty on Getting His Swag Back

(Quad Cities River Bandits)

(Quad Cities River Bandits)

Jordan Swagerty (@JordanSwagerty) is probably off your radar for the 2013 Minor League season. He didn’t pitch in 2012, so that probably explains that.

Here’s why he should be: Nine months after major surgery — and 16 months since his last MiLB appearance — Swagerty is healthy again, raring to go.

The last time we saw him in action, the now-23-year-old right-hander swept through three levels in the Cardinals’ system in 2011, compiling a 1.83 ERA and an 89-to-23 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 93 2/3 innings, his first since St. Louis made him a second-round draftee in 2010.

Forty-two days from Spring Training, Swagerty is in Arizona, completing two bullpen sessions a week, waiting to resume his trek to the Majors. I caught up with him on the phone this afternoon.

Me: How has the offseason been?

Swagerty: To me, it’s been about a 13-month offseason, but it’s been good. Still going to rehab everyday and getting my arm back in shape. It’s finally coming around. I’m going to be ready for Spring [Training], so it’s exciting to get back to baseball mode.

Me: What stage of rehab are you at?

Swagerty: I have been throwing pens now for  a while and actually, probably going to have to slow it down for a bit, just so I don’t build up too fast because I’m going to have a little extra time to play with, which is nice. I’m still strengthening everything, making sure everything is right, stretching everything out. It’s nice to have a couple weeks of time that is extra in case there was something that went wrong.

Me: Sounds like an on-time recovery.

Swagerty: Yeah, actually a little bit earlier than I thought, so everything is on schedule. That is nice thing.

Me: What have you been up to aside from rehabbing this past year?

Swagerty: I did I did a lot of hunting during hunting season, spent a lot of time in the weight room — I can’t do a whole lot of upper body, but whatever I can to strengthen my legs. Reading some books and finding a way to stay focused. I’ve been rehabbing here [in Arizona], but I did get time [in Texas] over the holidays. Two or three weeks at home, always good to see family.

Me: What’s been the challenge of not pitching in a game for more than a year?

Swagerty: Seeing your buddies playing, it’s easy to get you down because you want to be out there. I guess the challenge is staying focused on what you have to do on an everyday basis, going to rehab — rehab get’s very repetitive, so staying focused on what you have to do everyday and not trying to look toward the end of it, I think, is the biggest challenge.