Cardinals activate Allen Craig, put Skip Schumaker on DL

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Another day, another Cardinals player on the disabled list, as Skip Schumaker was placed on the shelf with a right hamstring strain.

This time around at least the Cardinals are getting a key player back off the DL, as they activated Allen Craig following the minimum 15-day stay for a hamstring injury of his own.

Craig was on fire before the injury, hitting .373 with five homers, five doubles, and a 1.188 OPS in 13 games after making his delayed debut following offseason knee surgery.

Obviously swapping Schumaker for Craig is an upgrade for the offense, but with center fielder Jon Jay suffering a setback with his shoulder injury the Cardinals could have used Schumaker’s defensive versatility. In theory Craig is capable of playing some second base or center field in a pinch, but that was an iffy proposition even before his knee and hamstring problems.

St. Louis’ disabled list now includes Schumaker, Jay, Lance Berkman, Matt Carpenter, Chris Carpenter, Scott Linebrink, and Kyle McClellan.

Report: Mariners sign Juan Nicasio to a two-year deal

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Mariners have signed pitcher Juan Nicasio to a two-year contract, pending a physical.

Nicasio, 31, spent last season with the Pirates, Phillies, and Cardinals, putting up an aggregate 2.61 ERA with a 72/20 K/BB ratio in 72 1/3 innings. He appeared in 76 games, leading the National League.

Nicasio will help bolster the Mariners’ bullpen behind closer Edwin Diaz. It’s not known exactly what role he’ll have but it seems reasonable to assume he’ll handle mostly the seventh inning while Nick Vincent will set up for Diaz. Nicasio does have plenty of starting experience so he could also spot start in a pinch.