Orlando Cabrera left tonight’s game against the Phillies after aggravating an injury to his left oblique, according to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer.
As you can see in the image to the right, Cabrera tweaked something while avoiding a takeout slide by Jayson Werth on a double play ball to end the bottom of the fourth inning.
Cabrera missed nearly the entire month of August due to a strained left oblique, so the Reds have the option of replacing him on the NLDS roster should this injury require a lengthy absence. The only catch, of course, is that he would not be eligible should the Reds reach the NLCS.
Paul Janish replaced Cabrera after the fourth inning and should continue to fill in at shortstop. Known more as a gloveman, Janish batted .260/.338/.385 with five homers, 25 RBI and a 22/30 K/BB ratio over 200 at-bats during the regular season.
Long-time rotation mainstay Tom Koehler was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans on Monday and reliever Hunter Cervenka was recalled, the Marlins announced.
Koehler, 31, made 131 starts out of the Marlins’ rotation over the last five years, but his 12 this season have not been good, so the club hopes he can figure things out with a stint in the minors. He’s carrying a 7.92 ERA with a 44/29 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. Koehler battled bursitis in his right shoulder in May and June, which may partially explain his struggles.
Cervenka, 27, posted a 4.50 ERA with a 34/21 K/BB ratio in 34 innings of relief with New Orleans. He hasn’t pitched in the majors yet this season, but compiled a 3.53 ERA over 43 1/3 innings in the bigs last year in the Marlins’ bullpen.
At the trade deadline, relief pitching is the name of the game and one of the names clearly available is Pat Neshek. Today Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the Nationals, Dodgers, and Red Sox are among the clubs who are closely scouting the Phillies reliever. Last week Ken Rosenthal reported that the Brewers and Rays were involved as well.
Neshek is an impending free agent, so he may come cheaper than Justin Wilson or some of the other bullpen arms available right now. The All-Star is 36 and is posting a fantastic season, featuring a 1.12 ERA and 45/5 K/BB ratio over 40.1 innings this season.