(BasebalLStL) – Justin Masterson doesn’t have any room for error in his first start for the Cardinals as they take on the first place Milwaukee Brewers, even in his first start since coming off the disabled list.
He was place in the DL with right knee inflammation, but Masterson made two rehab starts while still with the Cleveland Indians. He gave up seven runs in 11.2 innings, but he struck out 10 batters.
However, the problem the Cardinals are looking to avoid is his tendency to give up walks. He gave up 8 walks in his 2 rehab starts. He has issued 56 free passes, which ranks as the second most in the AL.
“He’s got something that not many people have,” manager Mike Matheny said prior to Saturday’s start, “when you talk about the sink and the slot and just the ridiculous movement at times. It’s just about controlling that movement. We have to help him get off to a good start.”
Matheny did indicate the Redbirds have safe guards in place to make sure Masterson doesn’t suffer an injury while out on the mound.
“We just have to keep an eye out,” Matheny continued, “Right now we just want him to go pitch. Not that we have some magic serum once he gets here to make everything right.”
This will be Masterson’s first career start against the Brewers.
Jon Jay injury update
Cards center fielder has missed three games with a wrist injury, but Mike Matheny said Jay came into his office Saturday to say he felt better.
“It’s just been something that’s been bothering him for a while,” Matheny said, “It seems to be getting better. We’ll have to take a serious look at [Sunday], realizing there is an off day behind it.”
Matheny said Jay is available to pinch run and he could still pinch hit, if needed. Peter Bourjos has made all three starts in center.