Jaime Garcia Could Be Rejoining St.Louis Rotation Soon
St. Louis Cardinals left-hander Jaime Garcia could soon be rejoining the Cardinals starting rotation, perhaps as early as this Saturday. Garcia, who has been on the disabled list since the start of the season, would be taking the place of fellow southpaw Tyler Lyons who was placed on the disabled list by the Redbirds after his most recent start.
Garcia had hoped to open the season as a member of the rotation when the Cardinals began the 2014 campaign, but he was shut down after throwing his first bullpen session back in February shortly after the St. Louis pitchers had reported for spring training. He had off-season surgery on his left shoulder which has been the source of previous issues that have prevented the 27-year old Garcia from fulfilling the promise he showed during his first two seasons as a member of the Cardinals starting rotation.
After going 13-8 and 13-7 in 2010 and 2011, respectively, Garcia was able to toss only 121+ innings in 2012 and 55+ innings last season before being shut down with recurring shoulder pain in his throwing arm. He has never topped 200 innings in his career, and if he is able to return to form it would add depth to an already deep St. Louis starting rotation.
Currently, the Cardinals also have right-handed starting pitcher Joe Kelly on the disabled list, and once he has recovered from the hamstring injury he suffered after making only three starts this season the Redbirds front office will have some potentially difficult decisions to make with respect to the makeup of starting rotation. Since 2012 closer Jason Motte is making rapid progress after having Tommy John surgery on his throwing arm last season the bullpen situation will likely also soon be getting attention from the front office.
However, given the continued struggles of the Cardinals offense a sudden infusion of depth to the pitching ranks may enable the team to move some players in an effort to acquire a proven bat around the time the July trade deadline approaches.
A healthy Jaime Garcia might just be the spark the team needs to awaken from the doldrums that have plagued the Cardinals throughout the first two months of the season and enable them to live up to the preseason prediction that had most pundits picking the Redbirds to repeat as National League champs.