The Tyler O’Neill era is officially here in St. Louis and you’re going to be hearing quite a bit about a guy who is known to crush 600 lbs on a squat rack and can have a pose-off with Gabe Kapler in late June if O’Neill can stick with the big club. O’Neill is expected to be activated before today’s game against the Cubs at Wrigley. I’ll assume girlfriend Stephanie Beck will be there since she’s been along for the ride around the minors as O’Neill went from the Mariners organization to the Cardinals in 2017.
O’Neill, the son of a bodybuilder who was a former Mr. Canada, is listed at 5-11, 211 pounds. Take a look at the pics. The guy is the epitome of a fire hydrant. And he is known for mashing a baseball. His home run totals are: 32 (2015), 24 (2016) and 31 (2017).
However…from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
From 2015 to 2017, O’Neill struck out in slightly less than a third of his at-bats. On his way to 31 homers at Class AAA last season, he also had 151 strikeouts in 495 at-bats. For the second consecutive season, 30.5 percent of his at-bats ended in a K. That kind of rate has kept other sluggers from the majors, or cost them playing time when they got there. Most recently, Randal Grichuk had difficulty staying in the lineup despite top-shelf power, and he was undone at times by a strikeout rate. O’Neill recognized the trend — and his obvious answer.
As for Stephanie, her bio reads that she’s a Ryerson University alum. She might want to start looking for work in St. Louis. Little McGwire is going to be around for a few years.