Cards' Ankiel to miss 10-14 days with knee injury
Ankiel suffered the injury during an intrasquad game Monday. He had been scheduled to start in center field against Florida Atlantic University on Tuesday.
An MRI on Tuesday revealed a strained patella tendon.
"Yesterday he felt a little twinge in his knee," assistant team physician Robert Shivley said. "It was pretty well localized to the bottom end of his kneecap, in the patellar tendon. We're going to reevaluate him in 10 days, two weeks, and hopefully he'll be ready to go by then."
The 26-year-old Ankiel had been impressive in spring workouts. He batted a combined .259 with 21 home runs and 75 RBI in 85 games split between Double-A Springfield and Class-A Quad Cities last season.
Ankiel was considered a can't-miss left-hander when the Cardinals chose him in the second round out of high school in the 1997 draft. His pitching career was derailed in the 2000 playoffs when he threw nine wild pitches in four innings, and he never recovered.
He was always considered a very good hitter for a pitcher, with a .207 career average and two homers, a double, a triple and nine RBI in 87 major league at-bats.
Against Florida Atlantic in St. Louis' spring opener, Scott Spiezio's pinch-hit RBI double broke a 1-1 tie in the eighth, and Reid Gorecki followed with a three-run homer. It was part of a six-run inning as the Cardinals rallied for a 6-1 victory.
Florida Atlantic's lone run came in the seventh when Cardinals first baseman Chris Duncan missed a throw from pitcher Rich Rundles. None of the Cardinals' anticipated starters played in the game.
The Cardinals don't play Wednesday, before hosting the New York Mets on Thursday.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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