Miles Mikolas’ latest injury puts the St. Louis Cardinals in a precarious position going forward. Can they even count on him this season?
When St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Miles Mikolas exited from a recent game with yet more forearm tightness, the immediate concern was that he would need Tommy John surgery, keeping him out for the rest of this season and most, if not all, of next season.
But those fears were immediately quieted, with no surgery being necessary, but Mikolas will be re-evaluated in 4-6 weeks after receiving a stem cell injection to address a “calcification in his flexor tendon,” the team told reporters, including Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat. He was later placed on the 60-day injured list.
The Cardinals are hopeful that he will pitch again this season, but it’s yet another setback for what has been a frustrating few seasons following his 18-win season in 2018. And it puts pressure on the other members of the rotation, most notably Jack Flaherty and Adam Wainwright, to continue to step up the remainder of the season.
Carlos Martinez should make that job easier. He has been a revelation for the most part this season, but has dealt with inconsistencies and injuries at times. But he has been everything that the team could have hoped for in the bottom of the rotation and has helped the unit exceed expectations to start the season.
Yet the Cardinals will likely need to add another starting pitcher at the deadline. Max Scherzer and Jon Gray figure to be among the top options available and there will be other quality options that join the two on the market, with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Baltimore Orioles being two clear sellers at this point of the season.
The Cardinals had hoped Mikolas would be their No. 5 starter and could even be a 10-plus game winner once again. But after his latest injury, they can’t expect him to make any sort of impact this season and even beyond.