St. Louis Cardinals reserve catcher Tony Cruz has been placed on paternity leave before the first game in a series against the Cincinnati Reds.
The Cardinals called up catcher Ed Easley from Triple-A Memphis on Friday for his major league debut. Easley, 29, has played 646 games in the minors since making his professional debut in 2007. He batted .296 in 80 games for the Redbirds last season with 10 homers and 43 RBI.
Manager Mike Matheny expects Cruz to rejoin the team Monday for the Cardinals' home opener against Milwaukee.
Cruz didn't appear in either of the Cardinals' first two games this season. The other one at Wrigley Field was rained out.