Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sore Knee Keeps Beltran out of Lineup; Notebook; Right Fielder Was Available to Pinch Hit and Hopes to Be Back to Regular Duty Tonight

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sore Knee Keeps Beltran out of Lineup; Notebook; Right Fielder Was Available to Pinch Hit and Hopes to Be Back to Regular Duty Tonight

Article excerpt

Cardinals right fielder Carlos Beltran was available only to pinch hit Thursday night against the San Francisco Giants after suffering a left knee strain running out a ground ball during the first inning Wednesday.

Beltran took swings before Thursday's game but said he had not run since feeling a "pinch" in the quadriceps immediately above his left knee. An MRI taken at a Chesterfield orthopedic facility during Wednesday's game revealed no fresh damage to the knee. Neither the player nor the team offered a timeline for Beltran's return to the lineup, though the club described the condition as "minor."

"Comparing myself to where I was yesterday, I feel a lot better but it's still sore," Beltran said. "Hopefully, one more day will give me a chance to get a lot more treatment and be in there" today.

Beltran said the MRI was reassuring. He insisted there are no plans for surgery following the postseason.

"They said nothing is going on in the knee," said Beltran, who was examined by team medical supervisor Dr. George Paletta. "Based on what he saw in the MRI, I should be fine."

Manager Mike Matheny made the first change to his postseason starting lineup by playing Matt Carpenter at first base and repositioning Allen Craig in right field. Carpenter batted in the No. 2 spot in the order typically occupied by Beltran.

Beltran, who has an extensive history of knee problems, said he felt significant discomfort after running through first base on an inning-ending double-play ball. He returned to the dugout and told Matheny and team trainers of his predicament, setting off a scramble to get Carpenter onto the field.

Carpenter than provided a pivotal two-run home run against Giants starting pitcher Matt Cain with two outs in the third inning.

Defensive decisions

Matheny took his players' input into consideration when he started Craig in right field and Carpenter at first base. …

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