What looked like the bargain signing of the offseason will end a few weeks early—St. Louis Cardinals infielder Felipe Lopez has been released, following what the club suggests was a pattern of tardiness that set a poor example for the team's September call-ups.
Rick Hummel captures the weird combination of punitive and conciliatory messages coming from the front office. GM John Mozeliak suggests that it has to do with "the message" the Cardinals want younger players to hear but also says "it was pretty clear he wasn't going to get the at-bats."
Of course, this all might have gone away if Lopez, who's clubhoused his way off teams in the past, had hit at all. In the second half he's struggled to a line of .183/.278/.262; his defense at third base was listless enough to occasion the Cardinals' trade for Pedro Feliz.
With Lopez off the roster younger infielders like Tyler Greene and September call-up Daniel Descalso figure to see more time in the lineup.