Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta has a torn ligament in his left thumb and general manager John Mozeliak told KMOX radio in St. Louis that he could be out for “2-3 months.”
For now Peralta is heading back to St. Louis to get a second opinion, but barring some unexpectedly positive news the Cardinals will be without their starting shortstop for all of April and perhaps all of May as well. Peralta hit .275 with 17 homers and a .745 OPS in 155 games last season, making his third All-Star team at age 33.
This offseason the Cardinals acquired Jedd Gyorko from the Padres to serve as their main backup infielder and now he could be pushed into extended action at shortstop despite little experience there in the majors. Aledmys Diaz is another option to see action at shortstop after hitting .278 with 13 homers and a .784 OPS in 116 games between Double-A and Triple-A last season.
Regardless of the fill-in options, losing Peralta is a big blow to the Cardinals’ odds of holding off the Cubs and Pirates to win a fourth straight NL Central title.
The Mets have acquired right-handed reliever Brooks Pounders from the Indians for cash considerations, the teams reported Saturday. Despite his limited and varied major-league experience, Pounders has put up intriguing numbers at the Triple-A level and is expected to step into a not-insignificant role with the Mets’ relief corps.
Pounders, 28, signed a minor-league deal with the Indians last December and pitched to a healthy 2.31 ERA, 2.8 BB/8, and 11.8 SO/9 over his first 35 innings in Cleveland’s farm system. He hasn’t taken the mound in a major-league setting since 2018, however, when he appeared in 14 games with the Rockies and labored through a much more unsightly 7.63 ERA, 1.2 BB/9, and 10.0 SO/9 across 15 1/3 frames. Still, his peripherals are promising, and there’s no question the Mets could use some help bolstering a bullpen that currently ranks eighth-worst in the league with a collective 5.31 ERA and 0.2 fWAR.
In subsequent roster moves, fellow righty Tyler Bashlor was sent back to Triple-A Syracuse for the second time this season, while Héctor Santiago was designated for assignment, Tim Peterson was optioned to Triple-A, and Chris Flexen was recalled from Triple-A. It’s been a less-than-ideal campaign for Bashlor so far this year: through 13 relief appearances for the club, he lost control of a bloated 5.23 ERA, 5.4 BB/9, and 9.3 SO/9 in 11 2/3 innings and had not been utilized in a game since June 2.