Ludwick put on DL with hamstring injury

Updated: May 13, 2009, 6:56 PM ET
Associated Press

PITTSBURGH -- The St. Louis Cardinals are missing two-thirds of their starting outfield after putting right fielder Ryan Ludwick on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hamstring and recalling outfielder Nick Stavinoha from Triple-A Memphis.

Ludwick
Ludwick

Stavinoha was available for Wednesday night's game in Pittsburgh, although he did not start. Rookie outfielder Shane Robinson, who batted ninth while making his first career start Tuesday night in Pittsburgh, was in right field and hitting second.

Ludwick strained his right hamstring while trying to run down a fly ball in the second inning Tuesday night. He was hitting .274 with eight homers and 26 RBIs and was the Cardinals' top batter against left-handed pitchers with a .323 average.

Losing Ludwick for at least two weeks further weakens the Cardinals against left-handers, who have held them to a .232 average. St. Louis is also missing starting center fielder Rick Ankiel, who has been out since May 5 with a right shoulder injury but could return next week.

Between them, Ludwick (eight) and Ankiel (two) have 10 of the Cardinals' 25 homers going into Wednesday night's game that weren't hit by Albert Pujols.

Ludwick wasn't certain if he would need to go on the disabled list following Tuesday night's game, but he had additional discomfort in the hamstring while being examined by the team's athletic trainers on Wednesday morning.

"If it's not going to heal in a few days, you're better off getting him back to full strength and giving him time to get healed," manager Tony La Russa said.

The 27-year-old Stavinoha was batting .264 with four homers and 25 RBIs in 30 games for Memphis. The outfielder was drafted by the Cardinals in 2005 and appeared in 29 games for St. Louis last season, hitting .193.

Stavinoha would be the 11th rookie to appear for St. Louis this season, the most in the majors.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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