Yadi activated from IL to 'anchor' Cards

August 21st, 2020

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals have their veteran catcher back behind the plate and in the lineup. Nine-time All-Star was activated off the injured list Thursday before the series opener against the Reds at Busch Stadium and was immediately put in the lineup, batting eighth.

“You talk about an anchor of our club,” manager Mike Shildt said. “All these guys love the game, but this is a guy who is bred [for] baseball. It’s his DNA, baseball. He said he couldn’t sleep last night -- excited to get back to playing. It was good to text him and talk to him during the break but better to see him in the lineup today.”

After being placed on the IL with a positive COVID-19 test, Molina missed eight games. He’s the first of 10 players who tested positive to return to action, largely because he was able to utilize resources at home during his quarantine, and he was asymptomatic the entire time he was out.

Also Thursday, the Cardinals recalled right-hander from the team’s alternate training site, while placing catcher on the 10-day injured list with a left great toe contusion. St. Louis optioned righty to the alternate training site after its game Wednesday night against the Cubs.

It’s the sixth day in a row the Cardinals have made a roster move before a game, but president of baseball operations John Mozeliak said he hopes the roster can be stabilized with no doubleheader scheduled until next Thursday against the Pirates.

“I hope we can get settled into where we feel like we have some protection, from a pitching standpoint,” Mozeliak said. “We’ll just see how the next few days play out, but I’m hopeful that the transactions we did today are not something that we’re going to have to continue to try to do every day, like we’ve had to do this past week.”

Woodford made his Major League debut on Saturday, starting against the White Sox and allowing one run (a solo homer) over three innings, with three strikeouts. He likely will be used in long-inning relief when needed, as will , who made his big league debut Wednesday against the Cubs. Both also could be available to start a game in next week’s doubleheader.

Wieters, in his second season with the Cardinals, is off to an 0-for-12 start at the plate. He took a foul ball off his foot in the doubleheader Wednesday and will spend the next few days at home resting the broken toe.

DeJong in Springfield; Martínez’s plan TBD
All-Star shortstop reported to the Cardinals’ alternate training site in Springfield, Mo., on Thursday to get live at-bats in over the next couple of days. He will eye a return to the active roster Monday, but that will depend on how he feels in Springfield and the team’s need. Mozeliak stressed that players’ return-to-play plans are not “one size fits all,” especially when coming back from a positive COVID-19 result.

“The best way to think about it is you have to individualize a plan for everyone,” Mozeliak said. “These are fluid. You’re going to adjust as we go, we learn as we go, and, hopefully, we make the right decisions for each player.”

Right-hander ’s plan is still being determined. He threw a bullpen session Thursday, and the team could have him return as a reliever to get him back quicker than if he returned as a starter, which would require more days to build up to a starter’s workload. With only six weeks left in the season, the Cardinals are going to want him back in some capacity.

All seven players who tested positive while the team was in Milwaukee have been cleared to return to the field and are working back up after several weeks of quarantine. That return process included two negative tests at least 24 hours apart, as well as other exams, such as a cardiac exam.

The other three players who tested positive when the team returned to St. Louis are close to returning, too. Reliever will “likely be cleared,” Mozeliak said, and outfielders and could return by Saturday.

Salute to the Negro Leagues
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Negro National League, the Cardinals will participate in a Salute to the Negro Leagues game Sept. 22 against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium. The game will feature throwback jerseys from Negro Leagues teams in Kansas City and St. Louis.

The Cardinals will wear the 1930 St. Louis Stars away uniforms -- the team that won the Negro National League pennant while playing at Stars Park. It’s a gray uniform with navy piping and “St. Louis” navy lettering on the chest of the jersey. The hat will be navy with “St. L” lettering on the front in white.

The Royals will wear the 1945 Kansas City Monarchs home uniform -- a replica of the jersey Jackie Robinson wore when he played for the Monarchs that year. It’s a cream-color uniform with navy stripes and red and navy piping. The KC Monarchs logo is on the jersey in red lettering.