There was some hope that Matt Holliday would be able to serve as a bench player this weekend against the Pirates, but Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak told Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch last night that he will remain sidelined until after the All-Star break as he makes his way back from a Grade 2 strain of his right quad. Holliday was elected by the fans to start in Tuesday’s All-Star Game, but this means that he’ll have to sit it out.
Here’s Mozeliak’s explanation:
“We always approach this in a realistic way. He’s an All-Star and we’d love to have him back in the lineup. But I don’t want to have him back for a day or two and then find out he’s going to be out for a longer period of time.
“I think it makes sense to take the All-Star break and pick up another extra week to let him heal and that’s what he needs.”
Holliday, who has been out since June 8, went through sprints and other running drills on Friday afternoon. He said that he felt “pretty good,” but apparently not good enough to be activated. The hope now is that he’ll be ready to go for the first game after the All-Star break next Friday against the Mets.
Holliday, 35, was batting .303/.417/.421 with three home runs and 26 RBI over 52 games prior to the injury.
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.