May 19th, 12:06pm: DeJong’s surgery was successful, MLB.com’s Joe Trezza reports, though a timetable for his return has yet to be shared.
May 18th, 4:24pm: Unfortunately, it does not seem that DeJong has suffered a run-of-the-mill fracture. The injury is to his pinky, per MLB.com’s Joe Trezza (via Twitter). DeJong will undergo surgery this evening to insert a plate, per president of baseball operations John Mozeliak and via Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (on Twitter), with the expectations being that there’ll be a “significant” layoff.
3:05pm: The Cardinals have announced that shortstop Paul DeJong is heading to the 10-day DL after he was diagnosed with a fractured left hand suffered on a hit-by-pitch. Also headed to the DL is righty Matt Bowman, who’s dealing with blisters.
It’s not yet known whether DeJong is a candidate for surgery, let alone what kind of rehabilitation timeline will be required. But his absence will tell, even if it’s for a relatively short period of time.
The major difficulty for the Cardinals is that, while they feature quite a few infield options, none really profile as regular options at short. Greg Garcia has the most experience at the position in the majors; Jedd Gyorko has lined up at short, but not very often and not for some time. It seems Munoz might also be viewed as an option, as he has spent much of his minor-league career at shortstop.
Clearly, those players aren’t likely to account for the missing productivity of DeJong, who’s not only a quality fielder but carries a .260/.351/.473 slash through 171 plate appearances on the year. With much of the Cards offense still working to round into form, the loss of DeJong will leave the team without one of its best bats to this point of the season.