Sunday, February 18, 2018
Sports

Cards ship starting 2B Wong to minors

Kolten Wong, a former first-round draft pick and one of the brightest prospects the Cardinals have had in recent years, no longer is their regular second baseman.

The Cardinals on Monday optioned Wong to Triple-A Memphis as they activated SS Jhonny Peralta (left thumb surgery) from the disabled list.

Wong hadn't started five of the past eight games, giving way either to Jedd Gyorko or Greg Garcia and his average had dropped to .222. Wong has a .306 on-base percentage and a .286 slugging percentage in 49 games.

The Cardinals intend to play Peralta at third base, with 3B Matt Carpenter moving to second and Aledmys Diaz staying at shortstop. Garcia, impressive since being brought back from Memphis, will remain as a utility player.

Wong on Sunday night sensed that he might be sent back to the minors for a second time in three seasons.

"Hey, if it is, it is," he said. "If they feel like they need to put me down there to figure something out …"

Wong, 25, will get at least some steady at-bats that way, and he said Sunday, "That would be good. Whatever they decide, I'll be ready for."

BRANTLEY INJURY: The Indians are concerned that LF Michael Brantley, out since May 10 because of inflammation in his surgically repaired shoulder, could miss a significant amount of time, Yahoo Sports reported. Team president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti acknowledged there is no timetable for his return but said the Indians "are encouraged by (the) progress he continues to make."

PITCHER RETIRES: RHP Phillippe Aumont, a former top prospect who struggled with his command in parts of four seasons in the majors, retired from baseball. Aumont, 27, was pitching for the White Sox's Triple-A Charlotte affiliate.

CUBS: RF Jorge Soler suffered a left hamstring injury in the third inning of the game against the Phillies and will be further evaluated.

DODGERS: RHP Brandon McCarthy, who is coming back from Tommy John surgery, threw a three-inning simulated game and was cleared for a minor-league rehab assignment. He's on target for a July return.

METS: OF Juan Lagares was diagnosed with a partially torn ligament in his left thumb after being examined at a hospital in New York but was expected to rejoin the team before it opened its three-game series against the Pirates. Manager Terry Collins said Lagares likely would be limited to pinch-running during the series.

NATIONALS: SS Trea Turner, one of the team's top prospects, was optioned back to Triple-A Syracuse as 1B Ryan Zimmerman returned from paternity leave. Turner, 22, went 3-for-3 in his only start Friday night.

RANGERS: Struggling slugger Prince Fielder was back in the lineup after he got an unwanted two-game break. Fielder batted sixth and played first base.

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