Maple Ridge Major Leaguer Tyler O’Neill is hanging onto an outfield spot with the St. Louis Cardinals this summer.
He played left field and hit a home run on opening Day against the Pirates for the team’s first long ball of the season.
Then, the slugger hammered his second home run of the season on Tuesday off Minnesota Twins pitcher Homer Bailey.
Tyler O'Neill – St. Louis Cardinals (2) 2-run. pic.twitter.com/qhsrQoz5KR
— MLB HR Tracker (@hr_mlb) July 29, 2020
There is a lot of competition for jobs in the Cardinals outfield this season, and O’Neill is at least holding his own. Through his first 15 at bats this year he had just three hits, but two were home runs and he also had four runs batted in.
The Garibaldi Secondary graduate, who was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in 2013, now has 286 at bats in the Majors, or about a half season of work, and has hit 15 home runs, 43 RBI, and a batting average of .255. His OPS so far this year is .894, which is well above the league average of .758 from 2019.
Pundits love his powerful bat, and say he could be a cornerstone of the franchise. Fantasy baseball prognosticators say he is a great sleeper pick this year. The key will be cutting down his strikeouts.