X-rays were negative on Yadier Molina’s left wrist after the catcher was hit by a pitch during the seventh inning of the Cardinals’ 5-4 win over the Pirates last night. Molina was behind the plate for the bottom half of the seventh before being replaced by pinch-hitter Matt Wieters in the top of the eighth. Cards manager Mike Shildt told MLB.com’s Anne Rogers and other reporters that Molina “got hit in the same spot, pretty much” that Ryan Braun also made contact with Molina’s wrist earlier this week on a swing that drew a catcher’s interference call on Molina.
It isn’t yet known if Molina will require any time off, though missing any games will be a blow to a Cardinals team that needs all hands on deck as it tries to lock up a playoff spot. Molina has hit .256/.296/.342 over 126 PA this season and spent three weeks on the injured list after a positive COVID-19 test.
More injury notes from around the National League…
- The Brewers placed Ben Gamel on the 10-day IL due to a left quad strain, so the outfielder’s 2020 season is over. Lorenzo Cain’s decision to opt out of the 2020 campaign left Gamel with a larger workload, and he assumed regular duty between center field and right field for much of the season. The result was a .237/.315/.404 slash line and three home runs over 127 PA, working out to a 91 OPS+ and 92 wRC+. It wasn’t a bad showing for a player who is probably best suited for fourth outfielder duty, though it remains to be seen if Gamel has done enough for the Brewers to exercise their $2.55MM club option on his services for the 2021 season.
- Walker Buehler threw a 90-pitch simulated game yesterday and is slated to be activated off the 10-day IL for a Thursday start. (MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick was among those to report the news.) Buehler has made two trips to the injured list due to blister problems, resulting in just seven innings pitched since August 21. Thursday’s start against the Athletics will therefore serve as an opportunity for Buehler to warm up prior to the Dodgers’ postseason run. Buehler is still expected to be a big factor for Los Angeles during the playoffs, though he hasn’t quite matched his 2019 form in this shortened season. Thanks in large part to a 1.9 HR/9, Buehler has a 3.86 ERA over 32 2/3 innings in 2020, though with a 3.60 K/BB rate, 9.9 K/9, and generally above-average Statcast numbers.
- Sonny Gray is tentatively scheduled to return during the Reds’ upcoming series with the Brewers, perhaps as early as Tuesday. However, Reds manager David Bell told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer and other reporters that no “final, final call” will be made until the team sees how Gray is feeling following a side session on Saturday. Gray has been on the injured list (retroactively) since September 11 due to a back strain, and his return would be a major boost as the Reds chase a postseason berth.