MLB Team Report - St. Louis Cardinals - INSIDE PITCH
With the Cardinals sending out right-hander Michael Blazek to bring up another position player and get the club down to 12 pitchers, rookie Michael Wacha will be doing his next work out of the bullpen, presumably in significant situations.
Wacha, the Cardinals' top draft pick last year, made a start Saturday, holding Chicago to two runs in five innings but running up a count of 99 pitches. He also pitched two innings of relief without giving up a hit in Wednesday's 5-1 loss to Pittsburgh. He could start again before the season gets too much farther along but, for the moment at least, the club is committed to veteran Jake Westbrook as one of its starters, though Westbrook has lost his last three decisions and hasn't been impressive in the process.
Westbrook is on tap for starts in Chicago on Friday and in Milwaukee on next Wednesday and, if he pitches poorly again, his status might be reviewed then as the team heads toward September.
Two more roster moves are expected Thursday, with the likely removal of catcher Yadier Molina (right knee sprain) and outfielder Shane Robinson (right shoulder strain) from the 15-day disabled list.
Molina has been rehabbing with the major league club while Robinson had a brief rehab option at Double-A Springfield.
They probably would take the place of outfielder Adron Chambers and just recalled utilityman Jermaine Curtis, who could return to Memphis for two weeks and then come back as September call-ups. Chambers made a bid to stay, though, when he knocked in the winning run in the 14th inning Tuesday of a 4-3 win over Pittsburgh.
MLB Team Report - St. Louis Cardinals - NOTES, QUOTES
STREAK: Lost one
PAST 10 GAMES: 4-6
NEXT: Pirates (A.J. Burnett, 5-8, 2.95) at Cardinals (Lance Lynn, 13-6, 3.79)
--RHP Shelby Miller fell to 0-3 against the Pirates after getting roughed up for eight hits and five runs, three earned, over six innings. Miller got a couple of fastballs up in the zone during the second inning and paid for it with a pair of homers. He fell behind frequently and couldn't use his breaking stuff to any effect.
--RHP Lance Lynn gets the ball for Thursday's series finale against a team that he's had success this year. Lynn is 2-0, 3.00 in three starts against Pittsburgh, allowing just one run in his last two appearances. He ate a 3-0 loss Friday night against the Chicago Cubs because he had trouble finding the strike zone, walking five and throwing just 59 of 115 pitches for strikes.
--LF Matt Holliday (right ankle sprain) was back in the lineup Wednesday night after leaving Tuesday night's contest in the bottom of the 10th. Holliday injured himself while trying to get back to first after the first pitch to Rob Johnson. X-rays were negative on Holliday, who extended his hitting streak to a season high 11 games with a second inning single.
--OF Oscar Taveras, probably the top prospect in the team's farm system, will undergo season-ending ankle surgery next week. It was hoped that Taveras would make it to the parent club at some point, perhaps to become the everyday center fielder, but he couldn't stay healthy. He played in just 47 games, all but one with Triple-A Memphis, and hit .310 with an OPS of .819 and five homers.
--RHP Michael Wacha threw two perfect innings of relief, fanning four and touching 97 miles per hour with his fastball. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said Wacha could be a setup option later this season for closer Edward Mujica, taking some pressure off fellow rookies Seth Maness and Trevor Rosenthal. It was Wacha's first MLB outing out of the bullpen.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "All we can do is turn the page on this one. We have a chance to win a series tomorrow." -- 2B Matt Carpenter after a 5-1 loss to Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
MLB Team Report - St. Louis Cardinals - ROSTER REPORT
--C Yadier Molina (sprained right knee) went on the 15-day disabled list July 31. As of Aug. 6, he was throwing and seemed likely to come off the DL on Aug. 15.
--OF Shane Robinson (strained right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list July 31. He resumed hitting on Aug. 5 and was sent on a rehab assignment Aug. 9. Robinson is expected to be removed from the DL Aug. 15.
--LHP John Gast (left shoulder strain) went on the 15-day disabled list May 26. Gast had season-ending surgery July 26, and he will need eight to 12 months of recovery time.
--LHP Jaime Garcia (left shoulder strain) went on the 15-day disabled list May 18 and was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 30. He was diagnosed with a torn labrum, and he underwent season-ending surgery May 24. He expects to begin throwing in late August.
--RHP Jason Motte (muscle flexor strain in right elbow) went on the 15-day disabled list March 22, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 14. He had season-ending Tommy John surgery May 7.
--SS Rafael Furcal (Tommy John surgery in March 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list March 20, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 3. He is out for the season.
--RHP Chris Carpenter (nerve problem in right shoulder) went on the 60-day disabled list Feb. 22. He started a rehab assignment at Double-A Springfield on July 15, then pitched for Triple-A Memphis on July 20. On July 23, he announced that he was shutting down his rehab due to numbness in his right hand. He told MLB.com on Aug. 5 he is not optimistic that he will pitch this year.
RHP Adam Wainwright
RHP Jake Westbrook
RHP Lance Lynn
RHP Shelby Miller
RHP Joe Kelly
RHP Edward Mujica (closer)
RHP Trevor Rosenthal
LHP Randy Choate
RHP Seth Maness
LHP Kevin Siegrist
LHP Sam Freeman
RHP Michael Wacha
1B Allen Craig
2B Matt Carpenter
SS Pete Kozma
3B David Freese
INF Matt Adams
INF Daniel Descalso
INF Jermaine Curtis
LF Matt Holliday
CF Jon Jay
RF Carlos Beltran
OF Adron Chambers