The St. Louis Cardinals will be without their All-Star second baseman for at least two weeks after he suffered an oblique injury in Wednesday night’s game.
The St. Louis Cardinals placed All-Star infielder Matt Carpenter on the 15-day disabled list on Thursday with an oblique strain and purchased the contract of catcher Michael McKenry from Triple-A Memphis.
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Carpenter is the third Cardinals player to go on the disabled list in the past three days, following outfielder/first basemanBrandon Moss
and catcher Brayan Peña, and he’s the second catcher to be called up during that period, followingAlberto Rosario
, who was called up yesterday.
Carpenter has been having an MVP-worthy season, ranking second in the NL in OPS (.988), second in doubles (25), and first in OBP (.420), while also playing capable defense at three different positions (first base, second base, and third base). He’ll be a major loss for the Cardinals, both as their leadoff hitter and their top run producer. In his absence, the Cardinals will have to rely on Kolten Wong, as well as supplemental pieces Jedd Gyorko and Greg Garcia, to try to replace at least a little bit of that production.
To replace Carpenter on the 25-man roster, the Cardinals purchased the contract of catcher Michael McKenry from Triple-A Memphis. The 31-year-old McKenry joined the club on a minor-league deal in late May, and in 24 games for Memphis since then he’s hit .341/.443/.683 with five homers in 82 at-bats. McKenry has played in the major leagues for each of the past seven seasons, seeing action with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Colorado Rockies. He’s always been regarded as an average defensive catcher at best, but he’s got a .725 career OPS in the majors and is very capable with the bat.
For what it’s worth, Matheny had three catchers at his disposal for 24 games (while the 25-man roster limit was in effect) last season. He used third-stringer Ed Easley in just two games during that period, letting him pinch hit once and putting him behind the plate during a blowout in another game. It’s doubtful that things will be much different this year, which makes it difficult to understand why the team didn’t recall reliever Miguel Socolovich to help out their struggling bullpen.