Allen Craig expected to take batting practice Thursday

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Good news here for the hobbled Cardinals.

According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-DispatchAllen Craig tested his strained left hamstring Wednesday with “some running” and is planning to take batting practice on the field before Thursday’s series-opener against the Phillies.

Craig has been on the 15-day disabled list since May 17 and is eligible to be activated on June 1.

The 27-year-old first baseman and corner outfielder is batting .373/.424/.765 with five home runs, five doubles and 19 RBI in just 59 plate appearances this season. St. Louis currently has a half-game lead over the Reds in the National League Central standings.

Tigers, Royals to play a regular season game in Omaha next year

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Major League Baseball announced today that the Kansas City Royals and the Detroit Tigers will play a regular season game in Omaha, Nebraska next year to open the festivities for the College World Series.

The game will be played on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha two days before the first game of the Series. It will be televised nationally by ESPN. TD Ameritrade Park has a seating capacity of 24,000, with the ability to expand to 35,000 spectators. Which, um, probably means this will be one of the larger crowds for the Royals next year if the club’s current trajectory continues.

This will be the fourth small-park, special occasion regular season game for Major League Baseball in recent years. hIn July 2016 the Atlanta Braves and the Miami Marlins played at Fort Bragg, North Carolina for service members. Last August the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals played in the inaugural Little League Classic, which took place at Bowman Field in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. There will be a second Little League Classic in Williamsport this August between the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets.