General manager John Mozeliak said Wednesday that Allen Craig has a fracture in his right patella (kneecap). Craig received a follow-up examination Tuesday for the knee injury he suffered last week in Houston, and the fracture was discovered.
Mozeliak referred to the fracture as “small,” but still acknowledged that Craig is no longer expected to miss only the minimum 15 days.
“The likelihood of his return after the 15 days would be a little premature at this time,” Mozeliak said. “He could be anywhere from three to six weeks.”
Two bits of news this morning:
* According to a club source, Matt Carpenter is the player on his way out today to make room for Kyle McClellan on the active roster. Carpenter will be optioned to Triple-A Memphis. Carpenter went 1-for-15 with a double, four walks and four strikeouts in seven games.
* Pitching coach Dave Duncan told KFNS 590 AM this morning that Eduardo Sanchez has some “tightness in his shoulder” and will be unavailable for a few days. I’ll obviously be chasing this today.
More to come on the site as the day goes on.
The Cardinals are beefing up their bench with a pair of additions. Prior to Friday night’s game against the Cubs, the club will option shortstop Pete Kozma to Triple-A Memphis and recall first baseman/outfielder Mark Hamilton from Memphis. Also, third baseman Matt Carpenter’s contract will be purchased from Memphis, with the team likely to send out a pitcher to make room on the active roster for Carpenter.
The Cardinals are doing without outfielder Matt Holliday, who was placed on the disabled list on Thursday. That will provide more regular playing time for Allen Craig and Jon Jay, which in turn weakens the Cardinals’ bench. Bringing back Hamilton and adding Carpenter should help address that issue.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported late Thursday night that Kozma would be optioned, and a club official confirmed on Friday that Hamilton will be the player taking his roster spot. No official confirmation was available on Carpenter’s promotion. However, Mark Cohen, the sports information director at Carpenter’s alma mater, Texas Christian University, reported on Twitter that Carpenter has been called up.
Kozma, 23, appeared in 10 games during his first stint in the big leagues, mostly off the bench. He went 1-for-8 but drew three walks, and recorded a double for his first Major League hit.
Hamilton will be making his second appearance in St. Louis this year. He went 3-for-15 earlier in 2011. Over parts of three seasons at Triple-A, however, Hamilton has shown himself to be an offensive force. In 25 games at Memphis this year, he’s batting .391 with a .509 on-base percentage and a .552 slugging percentage. His career Triple-A line is .318/.409/.564 with 26 home runs in 143 games.
Carpenter was a Spring Training sensation and very nearly made the Major League roster out of camp. He got off to a slow start in the regular season, but is currently hitting .283 with a .421 OBP and a .387 SLG at Memphis. Carpenter was the Cardinals’ Minor League player of the year in 2010.
John Mozeliak just announced that Matt Holliday and Kyle McClellan will be placed on the DL tomorrow. No word on who will take Holliday’s spot. Lance Lynn will take McClellan’s spot and will pitch tomorrow, with everyone else going back one day.
Two Cardinals were removed from Friday night’s win over the Rockies due to injury concerns, but both men played down their conditions after the game.
Brian Tallet came down with some tightness in his left elbow, but said afterward that he didn’t even want to come out of the game. Manager Tony La Russa and assistant athletic trainer Barry Weinberg prevailed upon him to leave as a precaution. Tallet and La Russa both left open the possibility that Tallet could pitch again before the weekend is out.
Catcher Yadier Molina, meanwhile, suffered what he called tightness in his left ankle prior to the game. He started, though, and played eight innings before La Russa removed him for a pinch-runner. Molina likewise downplayed his situation, indicating that he expects to play on Saturday.
Tallet was removed from the game after only six pitches. He was replaced by Eduardo Sanchez, who hit a batter but got through the eighth otherwise without incident. Tallet has had a series of maladies this year. He missed time in Spring Training due to a strained left groin, then suffered a broken bone in his right hand in April, sidelining him for nearly six weeks.
Brian Tallet is coming back sooner than expected. The Cardinals will activate the left-handed reliever from the disabled list on Friday, optioning first baseman/outfielder Mark Hamilton to Memphis to make room on the roster for him. A club official confirmed the move shortly before the Cardinals left for Kansas City on Thursday afternoon.
Tallet has been out since April 13 due to a broken bone in his right hand. He made one Minor League rehabilitation start, on Tuesday at Class A Quad Cities, and was expected to make another on Friday night. Instead, the Cardinals went ahead and activated him. Tallet struck out five of the six batters he faced in the game against Peoria on Tuesday.
With the move, the Cardinals go to 13 pitchers for the first time this year. Sending out Hamilton avoids what would have been a very difficult decision in the Cardinals bullpen. The two pitchers most recently called up, Fernando Salas and Eduardo Sanchez, have been two of the club’s best relievers ,and in fact Salas is the <i>de facto</i> closer for the time being.
Sending out Hamilton would also seem to be some sort of vote of confidence in both Matt Holliday, and to a lesser extent Lance Berkman. The two outfielders both missed Thursday’s game due to injuries. Holliday said afterward, though, that he expects to play Friday. Berkman is likely out for a few days. If the Cardinals believed they would be doing without both veterans for any extended period of time, they likely would not have moved to 12 position players.
The Cardinals held both Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman out of their starting lineup on Thursday against the Astros, though Holliday was considered available to pinch-hit. Both outfielders were removed from Wednesday night’s game due to injuries.
Holliday was removed from the game in the third inning due to tightness in his left quadriceps. Berkman came out two innings later because of soreness in his right wrist. Holliday is likely closer to returning, manager Tony La Russa acknowledged, though as of late Thursday morning the club had not heard the results of an evaluation on Berkman’s wrist. Berkman said Wednesday night that x-rays on the joint had come back negative.
In a bit of good news for the Redbirds, though, center fielder Colby Rasmus returned to the lineup from injury on Thursday. Rasmus had not started since Saturday, the result of an abdominal strain.
Allen Craig started in left field and Jon Jay in right for the Cardinals in their homestand finale against Houston.
Albert Pujols is moving across the diamond, at least for one day.
About two hours prior to the Cardinals’ game against the Phillies on Monday night, the Cardinals announced that Pujols would start at third base, rather than at first, where he has played almost exclusively for the past seven-plus seasons. Pujols last started at third base on Sept. 23, 2002.
When manager Tony La Russa initially posted his lineup, it had Pujols at first as usual. However, Pujols approached La Russa and offered to play third, and the manager took him up on it. Nick Punto moved from third base to second, Allen Craig from second to right field, and Lance Berkman from right field to first base.
Pujols played 1 1/3 inning of third base on May 1 at Atlanta. Other than that, however, he hasn’t played the position since that last start in 2002.
The Cardinals have just announced that manager Tony La Russa will miss the remainder of the team’s current road trip while he recovers from a persistent case of shingles.
La Russa remained in the Phoenix area on Tuesday for a second day of examinations, and earlier in the day the club had announced that he would miss Tuesday’s game. Shortly before the end of the game Tuesday night, it was announced that he will not rejoin the team before Monday’s home game against the Phillies.
More information as it becomes available.
Ryan Theriot was removed from tonight’s game in the fourth inning due to what the Cardinals are calling a “left shin contusion.”
Theriot was hit by a pitch on his left leg in the first inning. When he got to second base following a Colby Rasmus single, the Cardinals’ training staff came out to check on the leg, but he remained in the game. Theriot took another at-bat, singling in the third, before being removed.
Daniel Descalso pinch-hit for Theriot with two outs in the fourth, and was also hit by a pitch. Theriot joins a list of ailing Cardinals infielders, as second baseman Skip Schumaker and third baseman David Freese are currently on the disabled list.