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Willson Contreras won’t be catching for the Cardinals over the next couple of weeks.
The Cardinals aren’t just considering using Willson Contreras in the outfield. They will be.
Contreras won’t catch much over the next couple of weeks. He’ll be used primarily as a DH and corner outfielder. More soon on @TheAthleticMLB
— Katie Woo (@katiejwoo) May 6, 2023
Things have not been going well for the St. Louis Cardinals. With their loss on Saturday, St. Louis is 10-24 and have lost nine of their last ten games. As the team tries to find a way to turn things around, the latest domino to fall is that Willson Contreras is, for now, relieved of the catching duties.
Andrew Knizner will take over the starting catcher’s duties, and newly recalled Tres Barrera will back up Knizner. Contreras will slide into the DH role while also playing some left field and taking over at first base if Paul Goldschmidt needs a day off. This seems like a rash decision considering Contreras was just signed to a 5-year, $87.5 million contract with the intention of taking the catcher’s torch from Yadier Molina.
There’s no denying that those were always big shoes to fill, and the Cardinals’ pitching has been dismal in 2023. Is that Contreras’ fault? Cardinals’ manager Oli Marmol dissents, saying “One thing I want to make super clear: We’re not losing ballgames because Willson Contreras is catching.” Instead, he says to Katie Woo of The Athletic, the team is opting to go with Knizner because “we need to address the comfortability and confidence of our pitchers, and we believe familiarity behind the plate may help with that.”
Bryce Harper hits first homer since Tommy John surgery, but Red Sox win 8 straight.
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) May 7, 2023
Bryce Harper made a historically fast comeback from Tommy John surgery when he returned to the Phillies lineup on Tuesday just 160 days after surgery. Facing Red Sox’s starter Corey Kluber on Saturday, Harper smashed an opposite-field home run for his first homer of the season. In his first four games of 2023, Harper is 6-for-16 with two walks and five strikeouts. Harper’s return, however, hasn’t been enough to stop the Phillies’ skid. They’ve lost six in a row and sit at 15-19 on the season.
The Red Sox, however, wouldn’t let Bryce’s bomb get in the way of their win streak. The streak started last Saturday with a walk-off against Cleveland and includes a 4-game sweep (mop?) of Toronto. Boston will attempt to make in 9 straight as they go for the sweep in Philly this afternoon.
A rollercoaster win for the Diamondbacks.
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) May 7, 2023
The Diamondbacks went into the ninth inning with a 6-2 lead, but the Nationals battled back for five runs in the top of the ninth with the help of Keibert Ruiz and Lane Thomas home runs. Now down by a run in the bottom of the ninth, the D-Backs had work to do. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a game-tying solo shot to lead off the inning. Arizona battled back with a single, walk, and sac bunt, then the Washington intentionally walked a batter to load the bases. The wild night ended on a not-so-wild walk-off walk by Pavin Smith, scoring Christian Walker for the winning run.
Best Moments From Yesterday
Brotherly Love. pic.twitter.com/mhV3YX2CYy
— Red Sox (@RedSox) May 6, 2023
Masataka Yoshida is a big Bryce Harper fan. Yoshida has a dog named Harper and wore #34 for the Orix Buffaloes during his time in Japan, both in honor of his favorite player. Yoshida got to meet Harper before Saturday’s game between the Red Sox and Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. They talked, took photos, and Harper gifted Yoshida a pair of bats and signed cleats.
Royals honor Lorenzo Cain with pre-game ceremony and the best first pitch ever.
We love a Cain family first pitch. ?
— MLB (@MLB) May 7, 2023
The Kansas City Royals hosted an on-field retirement ceremony for Lorenzo Cain, who signed a one-day contract to retire with the Royals. LoCain had a heck of a career with the Royals, earning ALCS MVP honors on his way to bringing a World Series win to Kansas City in 2015. It was a beautiful ceremony that you can watch here, but my favorite part was the relay throw from his children that Cain threw for a first-pitch strike to his buddy Salvador Perez.
Liam Hendriks made his first minor league rehab appearance since beating cancer.
— MLB (@MLB) May 6, 2023
I think I speak for baseball fans everywhere when I say we can’t wait to see Liam Hendriks back on a big league mound.
Injuries & Transactions
OF Eloy Jiménez will miss 4-6 weeks after undergoing an appendectomy Saturday evening. He was dealing with abdominal pain Friday night and Saturday morning, and an evaluation at the hospital identified appendicitis.
Articles You Should Read
Jolly Roger or Jolly Dodger: Is the Pirates’ Pitching Success Sustainable? — Nate Schwartz, Pitcher List
‘It’s been hell’: Angels’ Jared Walsh opens up about neurological issues — Sam Blum, The Athletic
Fantasy Baseball Coverage
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)