St. Louis Cardinals ace Jack Flaherty left his Tuesday night start against the Detroit Tigers (DET-STL GameTracker) after just two innings with what was later announced as shoulder tightness.
No less concerning is that Flaherty showed diminished velocity prior to being lifted. His fastball was down a couple of ticks early, and before leaving the game he wasn’t even cracking 90 mph with his fastball:
Flaherty exited the game after allowing home runs to Robbie Grossman and Miguel Cabrera. In those two innings, Flaherty allowed four runs on four hits and walked three against only one strikeout. On the season, he’s now pitched to a 3.08 ERA in 14 starts and 76 innings.
Flaherty not long returned from the injured list after missing two and a half months with an oblique injury. In his first two starts back, he appeared to be in vintage form, but things took a turn for the worse in his third start since being activated.
Losing the 25-year-old right-hander for another stretch would be damaging to the Cardinals’ fading playoff hopes. They entered Tuesday’s slate 4 1/2 games out of the second NL wild card spot, and the SportsLine Projection System gave them just a 10.6 percent chance of making the postseason. With Flaherty’s status moving forward uncertain, those odds should probably be even lower now.
Originally Appeared Here