The Cardinals have activated Miles Mikolas off the 10-day injured list, and the right-hander will start against the Cubs tonight. Righty Seth Elledge was sent to Triple-A to open up a 26-man roster spot for Mikolas.
October 11, 2019 marked the last time Mikolas appeared in a big league game, as he allowed one run over six innings in Game 1 of the 2019 NLCS. Flexor tendon surgery caused Mikolas to miss the entire 2020 season, and then shoulder problems delayed his return until today.
This isn’t the first time Mikolas’ Major League career has been interrupted, as he headed to Japan following the 2014 season and revived his stock with three outstanding seasons with the Yomiuri Giants. After signing a two-year, $15.5MM deal with the Cardinals in the 2017-18 offseason, Mikolas took that new form back into MLB, finishing sixth in NL Cy Young Award voting in 2018.
That success led to another contract with St. Louis, as Mikolas signed a four-year extension worth $68MM. Since that extension started with the 2020 season, however, Mikolas has yet to throw even a single pitch since that new deal kicked in, making it a questionable investment to date for the Cards’ front office. Still, there is plenty of time for Mikolas to still deliver, and his return should further bolster the Cardinals’ pitching staff.
Jack Flaherty, Kwang Hyun Kim, and John Gant have all been very solid for the Cards this season, while Carlos Martinez and Adam Wainwright have been a little more inconsistent. St. Louis plans to use a six-man rotation for the time being, unless plans change due to other injuries.