Feldman: Hard to envision Jaime Garcia pitching for the Cards much longer

Feldman: Hard to envision Jaime Garcia pitching for the Cards much longer

Credit: Getty Images

ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 15: Jaime Garcia #54 of the St. Louis Cardinals throws to a Washington Nationals batter during the first inning at Busch Stadium on June 15, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)

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by Brian Feldman, Baseball STL

KMOV.com

Posted on July 5, 2014 at 6:59 PM

Updated Sunday, Jul 6 at 1:51 AM

(BaseballStL) -- No offense to Jaime Garcia.  Seriously, it’s not his fault he keeps getting hurt.  But this very well could be the end of the Garcia era in St. Louis.

The latest news – he’s having season ending surgery on his pitching shoulder – marks another unfortunate chapter in a long line of them in Garcia’s story.

From the Tommy John surgery which erased his 2009, to the shoulder issues that have abbreviated the previous two years (and now 2014), luck has been hard to come by for the lefty. There’s nothing the guy can do. There’s really nothing anyone can do because in all likelihood it comes down to Garcia’s mechanics.

If there was a simple solution to get this nerve issue fixed in his shoulder then it would’ve been done a long time ago. This particular injury isn’t related to his previous ones but it’s still the same shoulder. It’s still an injury that’s not allowing him to pitch and use his craft.

This isn’t his fault.

But In the end, a player’s best ability is his availability. You can’t use your filthy cut fastball from the dugout. You can’t use your devastating slider from the trainer’s room. If you are too hurt to play, it doesn’t matter how talented you are.

There’s something to be said for guys like Lance Lynn who take the ball start after start, year after year.  They can frustrate you with the way they pitch at times, but the fact remains he’s out there, healthy. 

Garcia is not that and he may never be that.

Looking at his contract situation he only has one more guaranteed year on his deal before club options start. Do you think there’s a snowball’s chance in you-know-where the Cards would pick up Garcia’s option given his history with injuries? It would take a minor miracle just to get him back on the field for a full season in 2015 and have him perform well enough to warrant that conversation.

The Cardinals have relied on Jaime Garcia for quite possibly the last time. Yes, he’s still an option through the end of next year. If for some reason he shows himself capable of pitching again he could find his way back into a few starts.

But the Cardinals will make all decisions from here on out assuming he won’t be available. Because he’s proven he can’t be counted on for that.

No matter if it’s his fault or not.

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