Yadier Molina exited today’s game against the Reds in the fourth inning with what the Cardinals announced left wrist soreness.
Molina, who spent two weeks on the disabled list with a knee injury last month, was previously bothered by wrist problems during the World Baseball Classic this spring. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch notes that he’s played through “nagging soreness.”
Molina has been amazing this season, hitting .329 with 10 homers and an .856 OPS in 113 games in addition to being the majors’ best defensive catcher. Veteran backup Rob Johnson replaced him following the injury.
As first relayed by Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Cardinals have activated backup catcher Tony Cruz from the 15-day disabled list. Adron Chambers was recalled from Triple-A Memphis in the Cardinals’ only other September 1 roster move.
Cruz played a whole month with a painful stress fracture in his right forearm and was finally given two weeks off when Yadier Molina was deemed fit to return from his sprained right knee on August 15.
Cruz will serve as Molina’s primary backup down the stretch with Rob Johnson falling back into more of an emergency third catcher role. Cruz, 27, is a .241/.279/.338 hitter in 130 career major league games.
Promising news here for the second-place Cardinals.
According to MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch, an MRI taken Wednesday on the sore right knee of catcher Yadier Molina showed inflammation but no structural damage. Cards manager Mike Matheny said the team is “optimistic” that Molina will only require a minimal stay on the 15-day disabled list.
The Cardinals spoke to the Cubs about Dioner Navarro just before Wednesday’s 4 p.m. ET trade deadline and probably looked into some other fill-in options as well, but no deal was consummated.
Tony Cruz and Rob Johnson will handle catching duties for St. Louis until Molina is ready to return.
The Cardinals entered play Wednesday trailing the Pirates by 1 1/2 games in the National League Central.