Short story: Moroff surges at Memphis, shows versatility with Rondon as Cardinals prep depth

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St. Louis Cardinals left fielder Austin Dean (0) congratulates infielder Max Moroff (67) after they scored the tying runs during the ninth inning of a preseason MLB baseball game at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla., on Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021. This is the first game of an abbreviated 24 game Grapefruit League season. Photo by Colter Peterson, cpeterson@post-dispatch.com

Colter Peterson

Derrick Goold

SAN DIEGO — The question posed to both Max Moroff and Jose Rondon as they put the finishing touches on their compelling spring-training performances was, despite all their versatility and ability to move around the field, did they have to hit their way onto the roster?

“I’d say so,” Moroff said.

Their gloves have been moved around at Class AAA.

The bat moves them up.

As the Cardinals consider what to do with shortstop Paul DeJong (bruised rib) entering the three-game visit to San Diego, two likely options to join the taxi squad or the active roster are the hottest hitters for Triple-A Memphis and two utility fielders. Moroff joked during spring training that he packed his outfield glove, if needed.

Moroff, a switch-hitter with a 1.762 OPS in his first 26 at-bats for the Cardinals’ affiliate this season, was announced as the starter at second base for the Redbirds’ game Thursday. The lineup was notably altered, and Kramer Robertson got the start. Moroff, 28, did not appear in the game. Rondon started at shortstop and went…

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