7/20/2013 9:00 P.M. ET
Cards patient with top prospect Taveras' recovery
By Jenifer Langosch / MLB.com
ST. LOUIS -- Top prospect Oscar Taveras, who continues to rehab from a high right ankle sprain in Florida, is not expected back on the field for at least another week.
The decision to have Taveras halt all running was made after a member of the medical staff read a mid-week MRI taken of Taveras' ankle. Taveras last played on Monday, when he had two plate appearances during a Minor League rehab game with the Gulf Coast League Cardinals.
Taveras has been dealing with this ankle injury since May 12. He missed nearly a month, returned for 15 games with Triple-A Memphis and then landed back on the disabled list as discomfort continued.
"We probably should have been a little bit more patient, not trying to get him back on the field for the sake of getting him back," general manager John Mozeliak said on Saturday. "We probably should have waited until he was 100 percent."
When healthy, Taveras has been productive. In 46 games with Memphis, Taveras hit .306 with 12 doubles, five homers, 32 RBIs, 25 runs scored and five stolen bases. If he incurs no further setbacks with the ankle, Taveras should be able to play at least one more month before the Minor League season ends in September.
Whether or not Taveras will get strong consideration for a September callup to the Majors will depend upon how much longer he is sidelined and how he performs once he returns.
"Obviously, he has lost a lot of at-bats, but when he has played, he has performed," Mozeliak said. "I think the simple way to look at it is just lost playing time. I don't think that diminishes his talent or how we look at him in any way."
Cards place Holliday on 15-day disabled list
ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals will have to wait at least another week before getting Matt Holliday back on the field, as the organization made the decision on Saturday to move the left fielder to the 15-day disabled list.
Holliday's roster spot will be filled by first baseman Brock Peterson, who was batting .306 with a league-high 22 home runs in 93 games for Triple-A Memphis. After playing the last four games one player short on the bench, the Cardinals again have five extra position players with Peterson's arrival.
Holliday had not played since sustaining a right hamstring strain while running out a ground ball on July 11 vs. the Cubs. He initially hoped that a week of rest would be sufficient enough to avoid a DL stint, and he was seemingly making progress in recent days. He participated in batting practice on Thursday and Friday.
But after not being able to run at full speed without hindrance on Friday, Holliday and the organization made the collective decision that additional time off would benefit the left fielder.
"I think he's real close now," manager Mike Matheny said. "But hammys are tricky. It's one of those injuries that if you push it, it oftentimes comes back to haunt you. It's being cautious, but also being smart."
The move was also calculated. Because Holliday hasn't played since the injury, his placement on the DL is retroactive to July 12. That means he will be eligible to return as early as next Saturday. Had Holliday made an appearance in a game this weekend, reaggravated the injury and then had to go on the DL, he would have had to remain sidelined for at 15 days from the last game he played.
With a team off-day on Monday, moving Holliday to the DL now only costs him six more games.
"I think that was the part where you say, risk-reward," Holliday said. "You don't want to lose the eight days I've already been out by trying to come back a day too early, or doing something to where now you're back to having to go on the DL for 15 [days]. Time wise, it really made sense."
Holliday participated in batting practice with his teammates again on Saturday. He took the day off from running, but he plans to resume that on Sunday. Holliday is confident that he will be back in the Cardinals' lineup as soon as he is eligible to return.
"We were hopeful that he could end up playing today, but just based on how he felt, we didn't feel like pushing him was worth the risk," general manager John Mozeliak said. "He can be back on Saturday, and I think the risk of it recurring will be very, very low. It's one of those things where we probably could have pushed it, but if it had gone backwards or he reaggravated it, I think we would have regretted the decision."
Carpenter makes second Minor League rehab start
ST. LOUIS -- Chris Carpenter threw 74 pitches (49 strikes) over 3 1/3 innings in a rehab start with Triple-A Memphis on Saturday. The outing was Carpenter's second since beginning his maximum 30-day Minor League rehab assignment on Monday.
Oklahoma City, the Triple-A affiliate of the Astros, peppered Carpenter for nine hits and four earned runs. Carpenter walked two and struck out two. He induced only five swing and misses.
The Cardinals, as part of their plan to build Carpenter up to carry the workload of a starter, set a pitch limit of about 75 going into the night. Last Monday, Carpenter threw 54 pitches in a start against Double-A competition.
As long as he has no health setbacks, Carpenter will continue to pitch every five days. With Memphis home through next Thursday, the 38-year-old right-hander will likely make his next rehab start back in Triple-A. He has enough time left on this rehab assignment to make as many as four more starts.
Carpenter began the season sidelined by recurring symptoms from thoracic outlet syndrome. He had to briefly stall his throwing program in June due to a separate back injury, but Carpenter has incurred no setbacks since.
• Right-handed pitcher Frederis Parra and shortstop Edmundo Sosa have been selected to represent the Cardinals organization in Sunday's Dominican Summer League All-Star Game. Parra, an 18-year-old Dominican Republic native, is 4-1 with a 1.82 ERA in eight DSL starts. He has struck out 25 and walked 11 in 39 2/3 innings. Sosa, 17, has a .290/.381/.390 slash line in 27 games with the DSL. He was signed out of Panama by the Cardinals last July.
• Triple-A Memphis received quality starts from both of its starters while splitting a doubleheader on Friday. Nick Additon scattered five hits and two runs over six innings in the first game. He did not walk a batter and struck out nine. In the nightcap, Tyler Lyons allowed one run on six hits in six innings. He struck out six while walking two.
• As of Saturday's game, the Cardinals had not announced who will take the fifth spot in the rotation once it comes up again next Saturday. Matheny said that decision will be made after this weekend series against the Padres wraps up.
• Former Cardinals reliever Mitchell Boggs is back in the Majors. The right-hander was called up by Colorado on Saturday, less than two weeks after the Rockies acquired him in a trade.
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.