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Oscar Taveras’ ankle “isn’t good enough” for game action

Feb 28, 2014, 10:16 AM EDT

oscar taveras cardinals getty Getty Images

Cardinals stud prospect Oscar Taveras said back in January that his surgically repaired ankle felt “100 percent” after causing him to miss much of last season, but after seeing him run early in camp the team disagrees.

In fact, manager Mike Matheny told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch this morning that Taveras is running at about 80 percent and then added that “80 percent isn’t good enough.”

Which means Taveras has not been cleared for game action yet and his chances of cracking the Opening Day roster–which may have been fairly slim to begin with–are dropping lower by the day. More likely he’ll head to Triple-A, try to crush some Pacific Coast League pitching for a month or two, and force his way into the Cardinals’ plans. Assuming that he can get healthy at some point, of course.

  1. ame123 - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:18 AM

    Another top prospect’s career ruined by injury. Damn shame.

    • dan1111 - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:24 AM

      He hasn’t even turned 22 yet.

      • ame123 - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:30 AM

        Can’t really play outifled on a gimpy ankle. If it hasn’t healed by now, its got major issues.

      • dan1111 - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:49 AM

        It’s WAY too early to write off his whole career. Lots of players have overcome struggles with injury and had successful careers.

    • spudchukar - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:25 AM

      What? Save your doom for the Yankees.

      • ame123 - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:31 AM

        What do Yankees have to do with it? He injured it last May and is still not right.

      • dan1111 - Feb 28, 2014 at 11:57 AM

        Really? You don’t know what the Yankees have to do with doom?

      • forsch31 - Feb 28, 2014 at 1:45 PM

        >>>”He injured it last May and is still not right”

        It’ll be a first for somebody’s career ended by a high ankle sprain.

        (Hint: It takes a while to heal. Just ask Sidney Crosby.)

    • paperlions - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:40 AM

      That’s both silly and misinformed. Indeed, the article is a bit of a mischaracterization of the situation.

      Taveras didn’t run on the ankle for a long time. He only started running a few weeks ago and only graduated to sprinting and more rigorous running a short time ago. OF COURSE, the ankle and his legs are not 100%….he just started running a few weeks ago after not running at all for about 6 months.

    • jjschiller - Feb 28, 2014 at 11:08 AM

      Yeah, it reminds me of when a when a young, spry, 22 year old Chipper Jones was ruined by ACL reconstruction, missed a full season, and was just never able to put it back together after that….

      • paperlions - Feb 28, 2014 at 11:45 AM

        Yeah, that sucked for him. But I hear that he was able to start up his own transportation service for those that are stranded by circumstance and he’s been very successful.

  2. nsstlfan - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:50 AM

    Hope this guy gets better and makes it to the Cardinals one day.

  3. paperlions - Feb 28, 2014 at 11:06 AM

    If you read the tweet, it says nothing about his ankle, it says he is “running at 80%”. The Cardinals have been very careful with him and have kept him on a slow but steady progression to ensure the ankle is healthy before each increase in his rehab/recovery. The plan was never to have him on the 25 man on opening day, but to make sure he is healthy. They don’t need him on the roster in April, they need him healthy and getting playing time regardless of where that is.

    • forsch31 - Feb 28, 2014 at 1:47 PM

      Pretty much. Mozeliak’s been pretty emphatic this off-season that they’re not pushing Taveras to make the roster or play centerfield.

  4. yahmule - Feb 28, 2014 at 1:34 PM

    It’s worded just right to make some people panic. Nice development for anybody targeting him in the end game of their fantasy drafts.

  5. gibbyfan - Feb 28, 2014 at 3:13 PM

    I’m hoping as much as any Cardinal fan that he makes a full recovery and becomes a super star…………….but the article certainly implied that the present condition of the ankle had something to do with his running ability. It has been the bestter part of a year since he injured it and if it was fully recovered how long would it really take for a 22 year old athlete to get his legs back? I worry about both him and to some extent Craig.

    • paperlions - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:59 PM

      He had surgery in late August, just over 6 months ago. They didn’t allow him to do any running until February, and even then he started off with light running. How long should it take after no running for 5+ months? Longer than a few weeks, especially when the rehab is designed to go slowly so they can monitor each step to make sure there are no setbacks.

  6. stlouis1baseball - Feb 28, 2014 at 4:15 PM

    ame123 is playing you guys. And you fell for it! Look at his posts.
    I am calling Redlegs fan. If not…he’s a Cubs fan.

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