Cardinals Thomas Out with Fractured Wrist; O’Neill Returns

photo: Lane Thomas (Benny Sieu/Imagn)

St. Louis Cardinals press release

The St. Louis Cardinals announced today (Friday, August 30), prior to their series opener with Cincinnati, that rookie outfielder Lane Thomas (right wrist fracture) has been placed on the 10-day Injured List, retroactive to August 28, and outfielder Tyler O’Neill has been activated from the 10-day I.L.

Thomas, who suffered hit by pitches to his right arm in back-to-back games Monday and Tuesday, is batting .316  (12-for-38) with four home runs and 12 RBI in 34 games with St. Louis, and ranks T2nd among National League leaders in pinch-hit homers with three.

Lane Thomas

O’Neill is returning to the active roster after a six-game injury rehabilitation stint with both Memphis (AAA) and Springfield (AA), where he combined to go 6-for-22 (.273) with a home run on Tuesday (Aug. 27) against Frisco.

The right-handed hitting O’Neill has appeared in 46 games with St. Louis this season, batting .279 (36-for-129) with 5 HR’s & 16 RBI.   He was placed on the Injured List on August 1, due to a left wrist strain, and missed 25 games.

Tyler O’Neill

The Cardinals also announced today that infielder/outfielder Drew Robinson has cleared release waivers and is now a free agent.

Brian Walton’s take

It is a tough injury for Thomas, who had been fighting a losing battle to secure playing time, first from Tommy Edman, then the promotion of Randy Arozarena, the re-emergence of Harrison Bader, and with the returns of O’Neill and Jose Martinez from their own injured list stints just ahead.

In other words, while the Cardinals lose a good young player in Thomas, they still have a wealth of outfield options for the final month. Three 40-man outfielders remain with Memphis – Arozarena, Justin Williams and Adolis Garcia. One or more of them may be promoted next week. (I shared my earlier predictions for TCN members in the article below.)

A lot has changed in St. Louis since O’Neill was injured. He had been given regular playing time in left field while Marcell Ozuna was out with an injury of his own, but now there is no clear path to a starting job.

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