Garcia tosses five innings in latest rehab outing

Jenifer Langosch/MLB.com

In what was likely to be his final Minor League rehab appearance, left-hander Jaime Garcia threw 93 pitches in a five-inning effort for Triple-A Memphis on Tuesday.

This marked the fourth rehab start for Garcia, who has been out of the Cardinals’ rotation for more than two months while nursing a left shoulder injury. Garcia’s first came in the Gulf Coast League, after which he pitched twice for Double-A Springfield.

He allowed four hits, including a two-run home run, to Salt Lake on Tuesday. Garcia also had three walks and eight strikeouts. Of the 93 pitches Garcia threw, 60 were strikes. He exited the game with Memphis trailing, 2-0.

Garcia is expected to return to St. Louis on Wednesday, where the Cardinals will monitor how his arm responds in the 24 hours after this start. If the organization is confident that Garcia is fully healthy and satisfied with what he showed in his four Minor League starts, he will most likely be activated from the disabled list before the end of the weekend.

The Cardinals have not announced whose rotation spot Garcia will take, but the expectation is that when Garcia returns, he will do so as a starter. Perhaps not coincidentally, his start falls on the same night Joe Kelly was starting in St. Louis. It was Kelly who took Garcia’s place in the rotation back in June, and Kelly is a candidate to be bumped upon Garcia’s return now.

Follow me on Twitter: @LangoschMLB

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