ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) — It didn't take long for the injury bug to bite the Cardinals during the 2020 season.
This injury in particular, though, shouldn't come as much of a surprise.
The Cardinals announced Tuesday that Miles Mikolas has been placed on the 10-day injured list with a right forearm strain. If that sounds familiar for the Jupiter, Florida native, that's because it should. Mikolas was shut down at the beginning of spring training in February due to the same injury. At the time, he received a PRP injection—his second since the end of the 2019 season—to try and strengthen the area of his arm and pitch through the ailment.
Though it seemed at first as though the COVID-19 delay for the 2020 MLB campaign provided Mikolas with the time he needed to heal, this new occurrence of the issue feels like an ominous sign for Mikolas' immediate future on a pitcher's mound. Forearm strains for pitchers are frequently precursors to elbow problems, for which Tommy John surgery is often required.
In this case, Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak believes Mikolas will avoid that unfortunate result. He will, however, require a different type of surgery to repair the flexor tendon in his right forearm. Mozeliak said Mikolas will miss the 2020 MLB season as a result for the surgery which is expected to keep Mikolas sidelined for around four months.
Jake Woodford has been recalled from the Cardinals alternate training site in Springfield to take Mikolas' place on the roster. Daniel Ponce de Leon will replace Mikolas in the rotation for the immediate future, and will take the ball Wednesday night against Minnesota.
In brighter news, the team announced that reliever Giovanny Gallegos has been added to the active roster. Gallegos served as the Cardinals most effective relief pitcher in 2019, posting a 2.31 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 74 innings pitched.
Kwang Hyun Kim, Ponce de Leon and Austin Gomber all competed throughout the spring and summer camps for spots in the Cardinals rotation. Each of them ended up in bullpen roles to begin the season, with Kim—arguably the team's most impressive starter between the two camps—now entrenched as the Cardinals' closer.
Woodford has been a starter throughout his career in the minors, but it will be Ponce de Leon taking Mikolas' spot in the rotation when the Cardinals face the Twins in Minnesota on Wednesday. Woodford could likely factor into the Cardinals' plans as a long reliever.
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