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Friday, August 15, 2014

Cardinals Injury Update: Yadier Molina, Jason Motte, Michael Wacha

By on 8/15/2014 03:30:00 PM

St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina and starting pitcher Michael Wacha are taking small steps towards returning from injury, reports Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Timmermann adds that reliever Jason Motte will not come off the disabled list when he is eligible on Sunday and may not be back until September:

Molina caught his first bullpen session since being injured on Thursday, but has been able to take swings or throw a ball. He has been out since July 9 after tearing a ligament in his right thumb while sliding into third base.

The Cardinals, who are two games back in the NL Central, are desperately hoping Molina can return before the end of the season, as he has been one of the most valuable players in the league for the past few seasons. Molina has batted .287/.341/.409 and posted 2.6 WAR in 83 games this year.

Wacha is throwing up to 150 feet on a flat surface as he attempts to return from a stress reaction in his right shoulder, which was discovered on June 22. Manager Mike Matheny said the next step in Wacha’s throwing program would be to increase the intensity.

St Louis will be very careful with the 23-year-old, but the team needs Wacha back in the rotation. Wacha posted a 2.79 ERA (3.04 FIP) in 15 starts before the injury.

Motte went to the disabled list on August 2 with a lower back sprain and has been unable to start throwing yet, meaning he won’t likely be back until September. He said it’s day-to-day as to when he might resume throwing, but the injury has not gotten any worse.

After leading the NL in saves in 2012, Motte has been unable to regain his previous form following Tommy John surgery. Motte missed the entire 2013 season and has posted a 4.91 ERA (6.90 FIP) with seven home runs allowed in 22 innings in 2014. 

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