photo: Tyler O’Neill (St. Louis Cardinals)
St. Louis Cardinals press release
The St. Louis Cardinals announced prior to this evening’s game (Friday, April 23) that they have activated outfielder Tyler O’Neill (right groin strain) from the 10-day Injured List and placed first baseman/outfielder John Nogowski (left hand bone bruise) on the 10-day I.L., retroactive to April 20.
O’Neill had started each of the team’s first eight games, collecting a homer and three RBI in 28 at-bats before exiting the game on April 10 following his 2nd inning at-bat. The right-handed hitting O’Neill owns a career .224/.284/.413 mark with 22 HR’s and 61 RBI in 179 games. He was a National League Rawlings Gold Glove Award recipient in 2020.
Nogowski had appeared in 13 games to begin the season, with 11 of those appearances coming as a pinch hitter.
Brian Walton’s take
After not starting in the 2020 Wild Card Series, O’Neill had a very strong 2021 spring training camp (.938 OPS) and earned the starting left field job. His first 28 at-bats of the regular season were not good by any measure (.310 OPS with a 48.3% strikeout rate), but there is no reason to suspect he will not be back starting daily.
However, that lineup return will not be on Friday. Before the home stand opener, manager Mike Shildt said that O’Neill took a foul ball off his foot during an at-bat at the alternate camp on Thursday and is not being started as a precaution. He is available to pinch hit Friday and could play if needed and should be ready to go Saturday.
Nogowski was injured on April 19. He was hut by a pitch in that game and Shildt told the media on Friday that the nagging injury did not heal. The timing to coincide with O’Neill’s return is “convenient with the medical team” and Nogowski is expected to be ready when the retroactive 10 days are up. In the interim, the 27-year-old will join fellow rehabbers Harrison Bader and Miles Mikolas at the team’s alternate site in Sauget, IL.
Nogowski managed just two singles in 16 at-bats (.125) in the early going with St. Louis.
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