Quinn Mathews & Nathan Church named Cardinals top Minor Leaguers for the month of April

Church Led All Cardinals Minor Leaguers in OPS, Hits, Runs and Total Bases; Mathews Allowed One Earned Run Across Four Starts and Struck Out 54% of Batters Faced

May 6th, 2024

ST. LOUIS, Mo., May 6, 2024 – The St. Louis Cardinals today announced their selections for Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Month for April, with Springfield Cardinals (AAA) outfielder Nathan Church and Palm Beach Cardinals (A) left-handed starting pitcher Quinn Mathews taking home the honors.

Church, 23, slashed .349/.402/.512, led all qualified Cardinals hitters with a .914 OPS and ranked within the top three for the month in runs (17, 1st), hits (30, 1st), total bases (44, 1st), RBI (18, 2nd), extra-base hits (8, T2nd), and stolen bases (5, T3rd). He hit safely in 19 of 20 games played, which included a 13-game hit streak, and matched his career-best with a four-hit game on April 20. It is Church’s first career Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month award win.

“Nathan’s month of April was highlighted by a .349 average and .914 OPS, with only 5 strikeouts in 95 plate appearances,” said Cardinals Assistant GM & Director of Player Development Gary LaRocque.

The 5’10”, left-handed hitter was drafted by the club in the 11th round of the 2022 MLB Draft out of UC-Irvine. Last season, Church led the Midwest League with 129 hits in 119 games played with High-A Peoria, sixth most among all Cardinals minor leaguers. Church was also recognized as the Texas League Player of the Week from April 15-21.

Mathews, 23, posted a 2-0 record with a 0.50 ERA (1 ER/18.0 IP), 0.89 WHIP with 38 strikeouts and seven hits allowed across his first four professional starts. He tallied two outings of at least 11+ strikeouts with no walks allowed, including a 13-strikeout game at Fort Myers on April 26. The 6’4”, southpaw is the second Cardinals minor leaguer to take home Pitcher of the Month honors in his first professional season since 2011, joining RHP Max Rajcic who won the award in June and August of 2023.

“Impressive start for Quinn Mathews in April, with 18.0 innings in four games started, 38 strikeouts and a .115 average against him,” stated LaRocque.

Ranked as the 24th overall Cardinals prospect entering the season by Baseball America, Mathews was selected in the 4th round of the 2023 MLB Draft out of Stanford, where he was named the 2023 Pac-12 Pitcher of the Year and ranked second in Division I with 158 strikeouts. Mathews was twice named Florida State League Pitcher of the Week for April 8-14 and 22-28.