One year ago, the St. Louis Cardinals made a difficult decision to trade their former two-time minor league Player of the Year and then and now, a cost-controlled centerfielder in Colby Rasmus.
While the deal delivered much-needed pitching to the Cardinals as they continued on their way toward a World Championship, it also created a full-time job for Jon Jay. The now-27-year-old joined the organization a year and a round after Rasmus, after being selected in the second-round of the 2006 draft.
Jay has been a streaky player in his three partial seasons as a major leaguer, having experienced several exciting highs offensively. They include a 1.017 OPS in May 2011, a mark which may have eased some of the Cardinals potential concern with trading Rasmus.
Jay followed his May 2011 peak with his worst month that season, a .658 mark last June. Since then, Jay did not have a monthly OPS approaching .800 until his promising .958 mark to open this season in April.
After time on the disabled ...