(KMOX) — The Cardinals removed shortstop Rafael Furcal from Monday night’s game in Houston due to what the club called “tightness” in his left hamstring. Furcal will miss the last two regular season game against the Houston Astros as the Redbirds make a final push for the playoffs.
Furcal blooped a single in the top of the fifth. An at-bat later, David Freese hit a ground ball to second for the Redbird’s 168th double play this season. Furcal was then seen on the bench with the club trainer, and pulled in favor of Nick Punto at the start of the bottom of the fifth inning, as part of a double switch.
Furcal told Matthew Leach of MLB.com that the feeling of the hamstring was more like a pull than tightness.
It is unknown if Furcal will need more than just a couple of days to recover. If the Cardinals are able to at least tie the Atlanta Braves, the club could certainly use Furcal.
Injuries had kept Furcal on the disabled list most of the season, yet had been able to avoid anymore setbacks until now. Last season, he missed time to due straining the same hamstring.
Available to play shortstop include Ryan Theriot, Tyler Greene, Daniel Descalso and Nick Punto. Theriot has made 87 starts at shortstop, the most season, yet has not played there since August 28. Nick Punto, who has made 4 starts at shortstop, was the most recent alternative to Furcal as he made the start against the Chicago Cubs last Friday.
Rookie Henry Sosa is starting for the Astros. The Cardinals have never faced him, but the Memphis Redbirds have. Pitching for the Fresno Grizzlies, the AAA affiliate for San Francisco Giants, Sosa made a relief appearance against the Redbirds on May 15. Adron Chambers plus Tony Cruz faced him, and in 2010, Sosa also faced Tyler Greene, Daniel Descalso, and Allen Craig.
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