Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Van Slyke Still in Limbo as Cardinals Fly North

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Van Slyke Still in Limbo as Cardinals Fly North

Article excerpt

The Cardinals left their exhibition season behind with a record-tying 21 wins as they beat the Baltimore Orioles 11-4 Sunday.

Their next stop is Montreal, where they will work out today and play the Expos on Tuesday with Todd Stottlemyre opposing the Expos' Jim Bullinger.

While the Cardinals are in Montreal the man who would be a Cardinal remains in limbo in St. Petersburg, Fla. Outfielder Andy Van Slyke, who probably would have made the club until his legs started giving him trouble, is rehabilitating at the minor-league complex with no sign yet of when or if he will rejoin the Cardinals. Van Slyke, a nonroster player at present, will be coming to St. Louis. His wife, Lauri, is within a week or 10 days of delivering their fourth child. "If it's close, I'm going to jump on a plane and go home," Van Slyke said. If all goes well at home, Van Slyke then will go back to St. Petersburg, but for what? He does not know. "I'd like to have some communication with (general manager) Walt Jocketty and (manager) Tony La Russa," Van Slyke said. "Communication with this new group is something that needs to be worked on." Jocketty and La Russa have said they can't guarantee Van Slyke a spot on the roster even when he recovers from his latest injury, a torn calf muscle. Van Slyke says he doesn't want to go to Class AA Arkansas or Class AAA Louisville - even for a while. "I don't want to take some young player's time," he said. Van Slyke said he would go to extended spring training, though. "They don't have a game plan," said Van Slyke, who batted .545 this spring and was four for five as a pinch-hitter. "I have a game plan, but I want to know if it's the same thing. "It's always been up in the air. Every day is a guessing game. "As soon as I put the red flag up, let's go. But I don't want to go back to extended spring training if they say, `Well. . . . "Right now a lukewarm response would be great. At least I'd be getting one." All in good time, said Jocketty, who is trying to cut his squad to the 25 players who will be on the opening-day roster. "We have some business to take care of," Jocketty said. "And then I'll talk to him. …

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