Carlos Carrasco’s return from Tommy John elbow surgery was delayed by having to serve a six-game suspension left over from plunking Billy Butler with a pitch in 2011. With his suspension over, Carrasco returned to the mound last night against the Yankees … and was ejected in the fourth inning for plunking Kevin Youkilis.
Carrasco hit Youkilis after Robinson Cano hit a homer in a blowout and Yankees manager Joe Girardi is convinced it was on purpose, but afterward Carrasco insisted it was an accident:
I know it doesn’t look good. I really want to say sorry. I don’t want to hit anybody. I don’t want to do anything bad. I waited a year and a half to get my suspension [done] and everything. I don’t want to do that again. I don’t want to be suspended.
Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports that Carrasco waited for Terry Francona outside the manager’s office to explain himself and say he didn’t do it on purpose, but no one involved from either side seems fully convinced. And either way he’s probably facing another suspension.
On Monday, Cardinals reliever Brett Cecil was placed on the 10-day injured list due to Carpal Tunnel syndrome. Cecil, who notably lost 42 pounds since the end of the 2018 season, was having trouble with his mechanics throughout spring training and only logged two official Grapefruit League innings.
Cecil, 32, is entering the third year of his four-year, $30.5 million contract. He struggled last year, finishing with a 6.89 ERA and a 19/25 K/BB ratio in 32 2/3 innings. The lefty dealt with shoulder and foot injuries during the season as well.
The Cardinals bolstered the bullpen in December, signing lefty Andrew Miller to a two-year, $25 million deal. It would be nice to have a healthy and effective Cecil, but the high-leverage workload will be managed by Miller and Jordan Hicks as well as Alex Reyes.
Cecil was among a handful of Cardinals to hit the injured list on Monday, joining Carlos Martínez (right shoulder cuff strain), Jedd Gyorko (right calf strain), Luke Gregerson (right shoulder impingement), and Justin Williams (right hand second metacarpal fracture).