St. Louis Cardinals News: Miles Mikolas injury update

DENVER, CO – SEPTEMBER 12: Miles Mikolas # 39 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches during the game against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on September 12, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. The Cardinals defeated the Rockies 10-3. (Photo by Rob Leiter / MLB Photos via Getty Images)

St. Louis Cardinals: Paul DeJong is slowly waking up by Matt Graves

It was always expected that the St. Louis Cardinals rotation would start the season with uncertainty, especially how they would fill the rear end of the rotation. But the injury to Miles Mikolas, who had already sustained a forearm injury, put her in an even more precarious position ahead of the opening day.

Mikolas, who suffered the setback almost a month ago, is still nowhere near his return. He recently faced live hitters for the first time since Feb.25, manager Mike Shildt told reporters, including MLB.com’s Zachary Silver.

Mikolas, of course, missed the entire final season following surgery to repair the flexor tendon in his right forearm. At his first bullpen session this spring he went “full throttle” and eventually led to his shoulder problems. While he’s only limited himself to fastballs and moves – he’s staying away from his other breaking pitches – the Cardinals are hoping he can return sometime in late May.

The Cardinals didn’t have the opening day rotation they’d envisioned all winter. Mikolas and Kwang-hyun Kim’s injuries brought them back to start the season. But they are cautiously optimistic that Mikolas can be an effective pitcher upon his return, despite having to throw breaking pitches and show that he is 100 percent healthy before he can consider returning.

But Mikolas is making progress like Harrison Bader and Tyler O’Neill. He’s further back than the other two. But the cardinals are getting well (slowly) and should have an important part of their rotation. A player who won 18 games in 2018 will return long before the midseason and stabilize his rotation.

For a Cardinals team at 8: 9, the return can’t come early enough. Especially Mikolas.

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