Johan Oviedo, who was said to be receiving two starts in the Cardinals’ stretch of 17 games in 17 days---they reached game 11 on Monday—will get that second start here on Tuesday night against the New York Mets.
The 23-year-old Oviedo’s first start this season came this past Wednesday when he gave up three runs in five innings to Philadelphia. To make room for Oviedo, who, ordinarily, would have had to stay down 10 days when he was optioned after that game, the Cardinals will have to place someone on the injured list. All signs point to righthnded reliever Jordan Hicks being that player after coming out of Saturday’s game with tightness in his right arm.
Hicks was undergoing an MRI on Monday and president of baseball operations John Mozeliak said results were expected later Monday night. Mozeliak didn’t debunk the possibility that Hicks might have to go on the IL but didn't want to make that declaration prematurely.
With Oviedo pitching Tuesday, the five regular rotation starters--Kwang Hyun Kim, John Gant, Jack Flaherty, Carlos Martinez and Adam Wainwright-- all will have a fifth day of rest before the 17-in-17 stretch ends on Sunday here against Colorado.
Wainwright returned from the COVID-19 injured list (contract tracing with family member) to pitch for the Cardinals on Monday against the Mets’ Joey Lucchesi, a Southeast Missouri State product. To make room for Wainwright on the roster, outfielder Austin Dean, hitting .185 with seven runs batted on only five hits, was optioned to Class AAA Memphis, which will begin its season on Tuesday night. Two of those Dean hits were doubles and another a home run.
The Cardinals were down to just four extra men Monday night, with the potential righthanded pinch hitters Edmundo Sosa and catcher Ali Sanchez. “We’ve played with 12 (position players) the majority of time I’ve been here,” manager Mike Shildt said. “It’s not anything overly abnormal.”
Ponce de Leon to get a shot
Righthander Daniel Ponce de Leon, who went on the injured list over the weekend with shoulder inflammation, is in line to receive an injection but Shildt said it was his information that no structural damage had been found in imaging taken Monday. “Obviously encouraging,” said Moeliak.
Mikolas to pitch four innings in AAA game
Righthander Miles Mikolas, who hasn’t pitched in a regulation game all spring because of shoulder inflammation, is progressing to the point, said Shildt, that Mikolas is ready to pitch for Class AAA Memphis this week on a rehabilitation program. Mikolas is targeted for four innings in the Memphis start and Mozeliak said the 32-year-old probably will receive three or four starts in the rehab stint, which can last up to 30 days.
Catcher Yadier Molina (right foot tendon strain) will be re-evaluated later in the week but may not appear on the home stand. “He says he’s feeling much better,” Shildt said, “but clearly he’s still got some time on the IL and we’ll get a better idea from a medical perspective as the next couple days proceed.”
First baseman John Nogowski, on the IL with a bone bruise in his left hand, is working out with the club at Busch Stadium before he likely goes to Memphis on Thursday or Friday to play in some games.
Elsewhere, on the medical front, Mozeliak said injured lefthanded reliever Andrew Miller (toe blister on right foot) had not been cleared for baseball activities.
1. Tommy Edman 2b
2. Dylan Carlson rf
3. Paul Goldschmidt 1b
4. Nolan Arenado 3b
5. Paul DeJong ss
6. Tyler O’Neill lf
7. Harrison Bader cf
8.Andrew Knizner c
9. Adam Wainwright p
New York lineup
1. Jeff McNeil 2b
2. Francisco Lindor ss
3. Michael Conforto rf
4. Pete Alonso 1b
5. Dominic Smith lf
6. Kevin Pillar cf
7. Jonathan Villar 3b