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Lance Berkman sidelined by second injury of the spring

Mar 3, 2011, 4:36 PM EDT

lance-berkman-cardinals-spring AP

When the Cardinals signed Lance Berkman to an $8 million deal this offseason guys like me wondered about the wisdom of asking a 35-year-old who’s not in particularly outstanding shape and hasn’t played the outfield since 2007 to be an everyday right fielder.

Sub par defense is all but assured, as Berkman was hardly a strong defender when he played the outfield regularly five years ago, but another issue is that the increased ground to cover and throws to make figure to present an increased injury risk after three years as a first baseman/designated hitter.

Berkman’s elbow started barking almost immediately, so the Cardinals limited him to designated hitter duties early in camp, but now he’s been scratched from the lineup altogether because of a sore calf muscle.

Berkman told Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post Dispatch that he’s “perfectly fine” and would have played if it weren’t early in spring training, but once the season starts the DH option will go away while the aches and pains probably won’t.

  1. yankeesfanlen - Mar 3, 2011 at 4:42 PM

    I’ll take used up Yankees DHs for $200.(Not $6M).Nick Johnson for $400, and Daily Double for 2012- Jorge Posada.

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 3, 2011 at 6:23 PM

      man u really support the yankees……. r u really Cash-man disguised as a fan?

  2. sportsdrenched - Mar 3, 2011 at 4:48 PM

    If I’m a Cardinals player. I’m going to back to St Louis until spring traing is over. Whatever they’re doing there is injuring players left and right.

    • cur68 - Mar 3, 2011 at 7:04 PM

      Adam Wainwright and his surgeon probably agree with you.

  3. rosloe62 - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:27 PM

    I hope the front office has Barnes-Jewish Hospital on spead dial.

  4. SmackSaw - Mar 3, 2011 at 7:27 PM

    What a stupid signing. Why didn’t they sign Vlad Guerriero? At least he’s played in Right recently.

  5. xmatt0926x - Mar 3, 2011 at 10:41 PM

    I dont get what the Cards saw in Berkman anyway. He’s a guy with a bad body to begin with entering his mid 30’s in obvious decline. I couldn’t believe they gave him $8 million in the midst of crying poormouth over Pujols.

    • jwbiii - Mar 4, 2011 at 5:24 AM

      Berkman is Pujols insurance. If it becomes necessary to trade Pujols, Berkman keeps Mark Hamilton or Nick Punto from becoming a regular. I agree that $8M is too much to pay.

      • spindervish - Mar 4, 2011 at 10:27 AM

        Incorrect. Pujols has his 10-5, and he’s already said flat out that he’d veto any proposed trade this year. The best you could do is argue that Berkman is Pujols injury insurance, but that’s a pretty weak explanation for giving the guy $8 million and playing him in right every day.

      • jwbiii - Mar 4, 2011 at 12:07 PM

        Players have been known to change their minds. Lance Berkman, for example, said he would only approve a trade to Texas.

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