The Cardinals drafted Tuivailala as a infielder in 2010, but converted him to pitching in 2012. He advanced quickly through the minor leagues, making his big league debut in September of 2014. He did not fair too well, giving up 2 home runs over the course of 1 inning during 2 games. He does have 1 appearance this year, but gave up another home run in one inning of work. He does throw 100mph, but a lot of times it is straight. He is still only 22, so hopefully he can develop another pitch and become a valuable reliever.
I bought this 2015 Topps auto off EBAY for $3.82 shipped earlier this year. The card was selling for close to $10 when it came out, but once the newness calmed down, so did the price. It is had to make out much from this auto, maybe the S in Sam and T in Tuivailala.
Sam signed this 2014 Springfield Cardinals card in blue sharpie. The S is slightly different with a bigger loop, but I think you can make out Sam a little clearer on this card. His last name looks to be consistent with the Topps card. I am surprised he has not shortened his auto yet, though that might change once he make the Majors to stay. Tuivailala was very nice to everyone, taking about 5 minutes to sign before he headed out to the bullpen. Sunday there was not a very big crowd, so he even offered to take a pic with my kids.
He did get into the game on Sunday, pitching the 9th inning. He hit 99 on the radar gun numerous times while allowing 1 hit. Very nice guy, hope he develops into a solid bullpen piece for the Cardinals