After a visit to Dr. James Andrews on Wednesday, St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jaime Garcia was diagnosed with shoulder inflammation. The good news for the Mexican native is that there is no structural dammage.
The bad news is how this setback might affect his chance of making the starting rotation.
Just as with former Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter, Garcia is unlikely to have a normal career ever again. Cards general manager John Mozeliak said as much yesterday when he told the media that, for Garcia, “The days of feeling perfect are over.”
It’s unfortunate but this is going to be the new reality for Garcia.
Mozeliak said that the team will explore the potential idea for Garcia to move from the rotation to the bullpen. Just as with the rotation, there are only so many arms that they can have in the bullpen. The Cardinals already have two left-handed specialists in Kevin Siegrist and Randy Choate. Given his injury history, would it be beneficial to both the Cardinals and Garcia to move to such a role?
There’s a lot of what-if’s at hand here. It sounds like Garcia will start the season on the disabled list. Do the Cardinals move a left-handed pitcher, such as a Tyler Lyons, into his spot to keep that one left-handed pitcher in the rotation? Or do they go with five-right handed pitchers in the rotation?
These questions will start to get answered over the next month.