Pineiro Continues Comeback Trail

RHP Joel Pineiro continues on the comeback trail. Pineiro, who has had some shoulder inflammation, threw 50 pitches in a minor league game Saturday. Barring complications, he should rejoin the team before the end of April.

The St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Joel Pineiro was placed on the 15-Day DL last Tuesday retroactive to March the 21st, after suffering from a shoulder injury that has plagued since the beginning of spring training.

What was originally described as shoulder discomfort and then as knot below his right shoulder blade, the Cardinals team doctors had an MRI conducted two weeks ago that revealed no structural damage to his throwing arm.

The right-hander went 6-4 in 11 starts with St. Louis after being acquired from the Red Sox on the trade deadline, then signed a two-year, $13 million deal with the Cardinals in the offseason and was expected to be the Cardinals #3 starter to start the season.

Pineiro was limited to just three innings pitched in Grapefruit League competition, picking up a win after, giving up just one run on two hits, one of them a solo home run. He didn't walk anyone and he struck out one.

Saturday he threw 50 pitches Saturday in a minor league game, which carried him through 3.2 innings. He didn't allow a run and didn't walk anyone, giving up just two hits, while striking out four.

Pineiro probably needs at least three more starts, barring any setback before he's ready to return to the rotation.

The best season of his career, Pineiro posted a record of 16-11 with a 3.78 ERA in 32 starts for the Seattle Mariners. The right-hander turns 30 in September, so there is plenty of time for his to regain his form and contribute for the St. Louis Cardinals this season and the next.

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