Cards' Piscotty back from concussion
Young outfielder goes 0-for-4 in Game 1 of twin bill
ATLANTA -- All Stephen Piscotty needed was for some paperwork to clear.
The Cardinals outfielder, who suffered a concussion in an outfield collision with Peter Bourjos on Monday, passed every necessary test to return to the field, but said he needed to wait for his players' union paperwork to clear before he could return. Everything was in order Sunday, and as a result, Piscotty returned to the lineup, batting second and playing right field in a 6-0 loss in Game 1 of a doubleheader with the Braves.
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said that in talking with Piscotty, he became aware of just how important it was for him to return to the field.
"Even talking with him, I knew how badly he wanted to get back out there," Matheny said. "He's been out there so many times and had so many similar plays to that that it's not an issue."
Piscotty echoed that sentiment before the doubleheader.
"I did feel it was important to get some playing time before the postseason and the break," Piscotty said.
Though he didn't necessarily take supreme advantage of that playing time -- Piscotty finished the day 0-for-4 with a strikeout and grounded into one double play while rotating between right and left field -- Matheny said the 24-year-old still had some positive at-bats and did what he needed to do. As a result, Matheny chose not to start Piscotty in Game 2.
Despite the fact that he said his main goal of this series was to shake off the rust and see live arms before the extended break before the NLDS, Piscotty said he didn't petition Matheny to play him in the second game.
"I just do what they tell me," Piscotty said.
As for when he starting feeling comfortable playing again, Piscotty said the feeling was almost instantaneous. Even though his injury took place in the field, he said he was never nervous about fielding fly balls. His timing at the plate, however, was in question. But not for long.
"After the first swing, [things felt normal]," Piscotty said. "I fouled it off and I was like 'Al lright, that was a good swing.' I felt good about it. At that point, I kind of figured I was in good shape."