Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday missed a second straight game Sunday with back stiffness that he says began Saturday morning and intensified to the point where he was scratched from the lineup five minutes before Saturday’s first pitch.
Holliday received treatment Sunday morning and dressed for the series finale against the Cleveland Indians but was not available to pinch-hit.
Holliday did not swing a bat, unlike Saturday, when a session in the indoor cage forced the decision to sit.
Manager Mike Matheny, who predicted Saturday night that Holliday would not appear Sunday, voiced optimism that today’s off day would allow for improvement that could make his regular No. 3 hitter available for Tuesday’s series opener against the Chicago White Sox.
Carrying 13 pitchers and 12 position players further complicates the situation. The alignment resulted from promoting Sunday’s starting pitcher, Joe Kelly, and optioning catcher Steven Hill to Memphis.
“We’re hopeful (Holliday returns) Tuesday, especially with us carrying 13 pitchers. We’re in a spot if he’s not,” Matheny said. “We’re going to continue to be optimistic about that. We’ll wait a day and find out.”