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Cardinals recall Gomber, option Flaherty

Special to MLB.com

PITTSBURGH -- The deployment of Cardinals pitching reinforcements continued Sunday with left-hander Austin Gomber's arrival from Triple-A Memphis.

Righty Jack Flaherty, who started Saturday's 6-2 loss to the Pirates, returned to Memphis. Manager Mike Matheny indicated as much after the game, noting a pair of off-days this week that will allow the club to use a four-man rotation.

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PITTSBURGH -- The deployment of Cardinals pitching reinforcements continued Sunday with left-hander Austin Gomber's arrival from Triple-A Memphis.

Righty Jack Flaherty, who started Saturday's 6-2 loss to the Pirates, returned to Memphis. Manager Mike Matheny indicated as much after the game, noting a pair of off-days this week that will allow the club to use a four-man rotation.

View Full Game Coverage

Gomber, 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA in four starts at Memphis, will come out of the bullpen. He has never pitched in relief professionally, but the club has been furiously shuttling pitchers to maintain a supply of fresh arms. The need lately has been heightened: St. Louis pitchers made 16 relief appearances in three games prior to Sunday's series finale at PNC Park.

Gomber, who has yet to pitch in the big leagues, entered the visitor's clubhouse just a few hours before game time. On Monday, he recorded 16 strikeouts in his most recent start for Memphis.

"Everything came together," he said. "I pretty much did everything I wanted to do."

Gomber, the club's No. 14 prospect per MLB Pipeline, said he threw 50 curveballs, 40 for strikes, among his 112 pitches.

"It's something we've analytically defined as a pitch that has a different break from most people," Matheny said. "It's just a big break. It goes hand in hand with spin rate. When you have a guy that's spinning more, it's usually gonna break more.

"A normal curveball from a lefty is gonna start in one spot, end in another, and when you have one that's out of the norm, it's gonna end in a different spot, which typically misses bats."

Sitting one out

Nursing a sore left wrist after his dive into the stands while chasing a foul ball Saturday, Cards right fielder Dexter Fowler was out of Sunday's starting lineup.

The injury is not believed to be serious.

"I knew he was gonna be sore," Matheny said. "I told him, just take a day. Which will be two days with the off-day [Monday]."

Bob Cohn is a contributor to MLB.com.

St. Louis Cardinals, Jack Flaherty, Austin Gomber