St. Louis Cardinals closer Jason Motte might be headed to DL

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An MRI revealed that St. Louis Cardinals closer Jason Motte has a mild muscle flexor strain in his right arm.  FILE/ASSOCIATED PRESS
FILE/ASSOCIATED PRESS
An MRI revealed that St. Louis Cardinals closer Jason Motte has a mild muscle flexor strain in his right arm.

St. Louis Cardinals closer Jason Motte probably will start the season on the disabled because of a mild muscle flexor strain in his pitching arm.

The Cardinals said Saturday that the right-hander had stopped throwing following the results of an MRI a day earlier.

Motte pitched an inning against the New York Mets on Thursday in Port St. Lucie, Fla., then told the team his forearm tightened up on the bus ride back to the Cardinals’ spring training complex.

“We’re certainly going to be as aggressive as we can with the rehab, but in terms of DL, I would say that’s likely going to happen,” general manager John Mozeliak said.

Motte was 0-0 with one save and a 5.00 ERA in nine innings during spring training.

Setup man Mitchell Boggs will move into the closer’s role

PHILLIES: Roy Halladay said he felt great. The results said otherwise.

Pitching in a minor league spring training game Saturday morning, Halladay retired only seven of the 18 hitters he faced in a four-inning start against the Toronto Blue Jays’ Triple-A team from Buffalo. Afterward, the Philadelphia Phillies ace declared himself “ready” for the season.

“I felt strong. I was surprised,” Halladay said, after his first outing since leaving a start six days earlier against Baltimore because of a stomach virus.

“I thought I was going to be a little wobbly, leg-wise and stuff. But I felt good. I felt like I could have easily thrown 100-plus pitches. So from that standpoint, I’m pretty happy. Arm felt great. No soreness. I don’t think I’m going to feel sore tomorrow. And I felt like my stamina was there.”

Halladay is still scheduled to start the Phillies’ second game of the regular season, April 3, in Atlanta.

He said that based on how he felt Saturday, he saw no reason to alter that schedule.

NATIONALS: Bryce Harper was scratched from Washington’s lineup because of swelling in his left
hand.

Harper was scheduled to bat third and play left field against the New York Mets on Saturday, but manager Davey Johnson told Harper in the morning that he would not be playing.

Harper was jammed on a pitch by Drew Smyly of the Detroit Tigers on Friday, and Johnson took him out of the game after two at-bats.

Johnson says he’s not concerned about the swelling and expects Harper to be back in the lineup Sunday when the Nationals play Atlanta.


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