Cardinals outfielder Randal Grichuk left Sunday’s 3-2 loss to the Braves after six innings due to a groin injury, the severity of which is unknown. Manager Mike Matheny described the decision to pull Grichuk as “precautionary” and added that the injury was “probably one of those things you could have played through.”
Grichuk singled in the fourth and advanced to third on another single and a groundout. That’s when he felt a pull. While the Cardinals were batting in the sixth, he notified the trainers. He also grounded out in the fifth prior to that decision.
Grichuk has been a starter in the outfielder since returning from a back injury that put him on the disabled list on May 16, when he missed 27-games. In the 62 games since, he’s hitting .285 with 10 homers, 16 doubles, six triples, and 34 RBIs. Having Grichuk slowed up along with nursing Matt Holliday back to health, could make recent call-up Stephen Piscotty even more valuable.
However after Mark Reynolds took a fastball to his hand on Saturday, he sat out which left Matheny to no other choice, but to move Piscotty to first-base during Sunday’s 3-2 loss to the Braves. Reynolds did pinch hit and his injury is not serious. Piscotty went 2-for-3 with a single in the fourth inning that drove in the Cardinals first run to make it a 2-1 Atlanta lead. Piscotty debut in the majors this week included him batting 4-for-12 with two RBIs.
While the Cardinals lost 3-2 and failed to sweep the Braves, they are still enjoying a six game lead in Central, after having won seven of their last ten. They’ve added 2.5 games to their lead over the Pirates since the All-Star break. The schedule certainly favors the Cardinals for the next few series.
The homestand continues with the Reds and last place Colorado, before the Cardinals head to Cincinnati and Milwaukee for a six game road trip. As of Monday, the Reds are just a half-game ahead of Milwaukee for last place in the Central. The next 13 games are against teams that are a combined 25 games below .500.
The Cardinals will also get Jaime Garcia back in the rotation. He’ll start Tuesday’s game against the Reds.