Kilgore Native Headed to MLB

KILGORE, Texas (Kilgore News Herald) -- "The call" finally came for Jess Todd, it appears.

"The call" was from the St. Louis Cardinals, the Major League Baseball team that drafted the Kilgore native in 2007.

Todd, a pitcher for the Cardinals' Triple-A franchise in Memphis, Tenn., received a call during dinner on Wednesday night from his Memphis head coach telling him he needed to be in St. Louis on Thursday morning.

Jess' mom Kim Todd confirmed the news earlier today.

"He's on a plane right now on the way to St. Louis," Kim Todd said, at roughly 10 a.m. Thursday.

"It's really a shock to us. We don't really know anything, other than his presence has been requested in St. Louis."

The franchise's website,, reported today that starting pitcher Kyle Lohse experienced tightness in his right forearm on Wednesday night after leaving the team's 9-3 loss to Cincinnati.

Lohse was being put back into the lineup after being out with a similar injury since May 23, suffered against the Kansas City Royals.

It's possible, although just speculation at this point, that Lohse's injury forced the Cardinals to go ahead and bring up Todd.

Todd, a 2004 Kilgore High School graduate that the Cardinals drafted in 2007 out of the University of Arkansas, has risen very, very quickly through the Cards' minor-league system, and picked up his 10th and 11th saves this week.

He's been in the closer role for the Memphis Redbirds, and is 3-1 on the season. He's got an ERA of 2.96 in 24 1/3 innings pitched (over 20 games). He's walked only seven batters this year, and has 32 strikeouts.