JUPITER, Fl. (KMOV.com) -- The Cardinals endured a cavalcade of injuries in the early innings of Saturday’s game against the Marlins. After two pitchers went down early, Jhonny Peralta had a scare when he came to the plate in the top of the fourth.
The 34-year-old fouled a ball off the outside of his left knee, hard enough to send it all the way down the line to the third baseman.
He doubled over in pain, and manager Mike Matheny and an athletic trainer rushed to his side. After deliberation, Peralta remained in the game to finish the at bat, flying out to right field. He never returned to the field for defense, however, instead heading back to the clubhouse to get an X-ray on his knee.
Fortunately, the exam showed no significant damage. While extremely sore, Peralta said he expects he could play as soon as Sunday, depending on how he feels when he wakes up.
Given the proximity to the season, the Cardinals will not rush him back to action. Peralta has amassed more than 40 at bats and has little left to accomplish in spring. He most likely return early next week.