Cardinals leave A.J. Pierzynski, Jason Motte off NLDS roster

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St. Louis’ playoff roster for the NLDS will not include A.J. Pierzynski, who filled in at catcher while Yadier Molina was hurt, or Jason Motte, who was the team’s standout closer before blowing out his elbow.

Molina is back and will start every playoff game, so the Cardinals preferred Tony Cruz as his backup after Pierzynski hit just .244 with one homer and a .600 OPS in 30 games.

Motte saved a league-high 42 games for the Cardinals in 2012, but then he missed all of 2013 and struggled this year with a 4.68 ERA and seven homers allowed in 25 innings.