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Jake Lemmerman (Photo courtesy St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

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By Scott Barancik/Jewish Baseball News

The St. Louis Cardinals have traded MLB utility man Skip Schumaker to the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for 23-year-old prospect Jake Lemmerman.

Depending how he performs in spring training, Lemmerman will start at shortstop for the club’s Double-A team or play a utility role in Triple-A, according to this interview with farm director John Vuch.

Lemmerman had just finished his junior year at Duke University when the Los Angeles Dodgers picked him in the 5th round of the 2010 amateur draft. He began his professional career with a bang, earning Most Valuable Player honors in the rookie Pioneer League by hitting .363 with 12 HRs, 47 RBIs, and a .434 on-base percentage in just 259 at-bats.

The Corona del Mar, Calif., native spent most of the 2011 season with the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (A-advanced), where he hit .293 with 8 HRs, 54 RBIs, and a .379 oBP before being called up by the Chattanooga Lookouts (AA) for the final 21 games.

Lemmerman’s star dimmed a bit in 2012. In his first full season at Double-A, he hit just .233 with 7 HRs and 46 RBIs, and he struck out 94 times.

Nevertheless, scouts still liked his heads-up fielding, .347 on-base percentage, and perfect 8 steals in 8 attempts. If he can get his average back up and his whiffs down, Lemmerman could climb the Cards’ depth chart.

Lemmerman is the league-leading 7th Jewish player currently in the Cardinals’ franchise. He joins P Scott Schneider of the Springfield Cardinals (AA), P Corey Baker and IF Garrett Wittels of the Batavia Muckdogs (A-short season), and P Jacob Booden, C Adam Ehrlich, and 1B Jeremy Schaffer of the Johnson City Cardinals (rookie league).

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