PITTSBURGH -- Seeking to add experience and innings to a young rotation, the Cardinals claimed right-hander Tyson Ross off waivers from the Padres on Sunday prior to their 2-1 victory over the Pirates. Ross will join the club in Miami, at which time the Cardinals will make a corresponding roster
PITTSBURGH -- Seeking to add experience and innings to a young rotation, the Cardinals claimed right-hander Tyson Ross off waivers from the Padres on Sunday prior to their 2-1 victory over the Pirates. Ross will join the club in Miami, at which time the Cardinals will make a corresponding roster move.
The Cardinals are expected to move Ross into the rotation. He'll be rested enough to pitch as early as Wednesday, which would be right-hander John Gant's turn to pitch. The Cardinals could also hold Ross until Friday and start him in place of Austin Gomber, whose spot start on Saturday lasted four innings.
Ross, an All-Star in 2014, earned a spot on the Padres' Major League roster out of Spring Training after signing a Minor League contract. He went on to make 22 starts, going 6-9 with a 4.45 ERA and 1.330 WHIP.
"I think it's important to add a guy that has that kind of experience," interim manager Mike Shildt said. "Some of the guys who have played with him came in and spoke volumes about what kind of guy he is. Clearly, he'll fit in well. The guy can eat innings. The guy has been an All-Star. We're excited to have him. He'll definitely contribute for us."
Though the Padres had an opportunity to take Ross back after the Cardinals claimed him on revocable waivers, they decided to cut ties with him and Jordan Lyles as part of their effort to hand more opportunities over to young pitchers.
"It's good to see him go have the opportunity to pitch in meaningful August and September baseball games," Padres manager Andy Green said of Ross. "I think the world of him."
Ross has struggled to pitch deep into games since the start of July, but he should help the Cardinals with innings coverage while they wait for Carlos Martinez and Michael Wacha to get healthy. Without those two, the Cardinals were featuring a rotation in which no one had pitched more than 61 innings in a Major League season.
Ross has more career starts (134) than the Cardinals' rotation combined.
"Former All-Star. He's got elite stuff," infielder Matt Carpenter said. "I think it was a good move for us, and it's certainly going to help with the young rotation and guys who are banged up."
O'Neill out again
The Cardinals played Sunday's game with only three available bench players after Tyler O'Neill was not cleared by the medical staff for the series finale. Shildt said that O'Neill is dealing with a groin ailment that presented itself just as Saturday's game was beginning.
Shildt added that "there's definitely a chance" the issue will necessitate moving O'Neill to the disabled list. O'Neill was scheduled to fly with the team to Miami for further evaluation.
This setback comes just as O'Neill was primed to get everyday at-bats as the team's starting right fielder. In his absence, Jose Martinez started in right for a second straight day.
Marcell Ozuna will be back at Marlins Park this week for the first time since the Marlins dealt him to St. Louis in December. Ozuna said he expects to receive a warm reception from the fans, but is especially excited about getting to spend a few days at home with his family.
"I'm feeling good because I'm going home," Ozuna said. "It's been a long time since I was home."
• Dominic Leone threw another scoreless inning on Saturday in his second rehab appearance with Triple-A Memphis. Leone, who has been sidelined by nerve irritation in his right arm since early May, worked around a hit and a walk in the 19-pitch outing.
• Outfielder Adolis Garcia extended his hitting streak to 14 games in Memphis' loss on Saturday. He is hitting .419 with 18 runs, eight doubles, nine homers and 23 RBIs during that streak.
Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.