St. Louis Cardinals Wiretap
Cardinals shortstop Rafael Furcal may return home from the team's road trip for further testing after straining his right elbow on Thursday night, according to an ESPN.com report.
Furcal was asked whether he was concerned the injury might end his season.
"Sort of," Furcal said. "It's bad."
The Pirates are still haunted by last season's late summer collapse.
Pittsburgh lost a 19-inning marathon on July 26, 2011 and never recovered. They would lose 11 of their next 12 games.
The Pirates edged the Cardinals in an extra-inning battle last week, but have dropped five of six since. The Pirates and Cardinals will face off in a series this week, beginning on Monday night.
"We've had a tough stretch here. Every team goes through it," general manager Neal Huntington said. "It's time for our guys to regroup, and refocus our energies on what we have to take care of. This is exciting -- this is why we do this, to play meaningful games late in the season. To do that, you've got to beat the good teams. It's going to be a fun series."
The Pirates are eight games back of the Reds in the National League Central at 68-59. They are just two games back of the Braves and Cardinals for one of the two Wild Card berths.
Lance Berkman is leaning towards retiring after his second season with the Cardinals.
He is working his way back from right knee surgery and hopes to return to the team by Sept. 1 for the stretch run. The 36-year-old wants to make his retirement final once he decides to quit.
"I don't want to rule anything out. But if you asked me right now I'm leaning toward not playing next year," Berkman said.
"I don't want to say for certain because I don't want to do like Brett Favre and say, 'I retired; I'm not retired; I'm retired; I'm not retired.' I don't want to make that call right now, but if you put a gun to my head and demand an answer today I would tell you I'm probably not going to play next year."
The Cardinals and Jake Westbrook have agreed to terms on a one-year contract extension with a mutual option for the 2014 season.
The deal replaces a mutual option in his previous contract for next season. Westbrook is guaranteed $8.75 million for 2013 with a $9.5 option for 2014.
The Cardinals have placed Brian Fuentes on the restricted list after the left-hander said he needed time off due to personal reasons.
Fuentes, signed as a minor league free agent last month, has appeared in six games.
Cardinals Aug 2012 Archive