Cards minor leaguers working their way back

Exclusive news from St. Louis Cardinals minor league camp in Jupiter, Florida on an injured 2012 draftee, a surgery, a rehabber rounding into form and a surprising comeback attempt.

Perry out of uniform
Chris Perry, who threw 92.2 innings this spring for Methodist University in Fayetteville, N.C., developed inflammation in his lower back shortly after starting his workouts a few weeks ago with the Gulf Coast Cardinals in Jupiter.

Perry, the Cardinals' 17th-round pick in this year's First-Year Player Draft, has resumed throwing and will throw a bullpen session Friday.

"How he reacts to throwing form the mound will determine how we move forward," Gulf Coast Cardinals pitching coach Tim Leveque said.

Boone Whiting made his 2012 debut Tuesday with a 1-2-3 inning against the Astros. A native of Oakdale, Calif., near Modesto, Whiting is on a rehab assignment from Quad Cities, where he was pitching last year (5-2, 2.41 ERA in 30 games, 14 starts) when he met the Davenport, Iowa, woman he married this January.

Whiting, the Cardinals' 18th-round pick in 2010 out of Centenary College in Louisiana, has recovered from a strained flexor tendon in his right arm and is scheduled to pitch two innings against the Gulf Coast Marlins on Friday before he and his bride, Molly, return to the Quad Cities.

Seth Blair also made his 2012 debut with a rather unusual inning following Whiting's on Tuesday. Blair, a right-hander from Arizona State whom the Cardinals selected as a supplemental first-round pick in 2010, will start Friday's game against the GCL Marlins.

Blair has recovered from surgery on the middle finger of his pitching hand after a tumor at the top knuckle caused a fracture at the end of spring training. Blair said doctors scraped out the tumor and inserted a bone graft. Blair didn't resume throwing until July 13.

After the surgery, "I could do everything except throw a baseball," Blair said Thursday. "The one thing I wanted to do the most."

In his appearance Tuesday against the Astros, Blair gave up a single to the first batter he faced. After the runner moved to second on a passed ball, Blair fielded a sacrifice bunt and threw out the batter at first. The next batter hit a grounder, but second baseman Brett Wiley nailed the runner fromm third trying to score. Then, with the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2012, Carlos Correa, in the batter's box, Blair picked the runner off first.

Wilson in 2008
Josh Wilson, a right-handed pitcher who hasn't appeared in a game since he was with Quad Cities in 2009, plans to pitch in a GCL Cardinals game next week once a rehab roster spot opens for him.

Wilson, 25, the Cardinals' second-round pick in 2005 out of Whitehouse, Texas, twice had surgery to repair a torn labrum, the last time two years ago. Wilson strained the labrum again last season and has not pitched since.

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