As the Cardinals move toward the National League playoffs, they are short-handed in the offense department. Allen Craig has been notoriously absent for weeks as a result of various issues, and now, the franchise’s cornerstone outfielder is in jeopardy.
Matt Holliday is out of the lineup on Tuesday, and while that wouldn’t be a big deal in a vacuum, it is the third straight day on the sidelines for the right-hander in the midst of the pennant race. One explanation for his extended rest (read: stiff back) would be that the Cards have a 2-game lead in the NL Central race, but more likely, he is truly limited as a result of this nagging injury.
For the year, Holliday has been his normal, productive self. The left-fielder has a .298/.382/.479 slash line with 20 home runs and 99 runs scored, and he’s already been worth more than 4 wins of production despite just 591 plate appearances. St. Louis has every right to be stingy with his return, as they can play Shane Robinson in his stead, but it’s something to keep an eye on moving forward.
Getting into the playoffs won’t be an issue for St. Louis, but they will definitely need Holliday in the outfield when the postseason begins. Hopefully, he’ll be in the lineup on Wednesday to alleviate concern, but if not, the fears of Cardinals fans will increase.