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Jason Motte delivers a scoreless inning in his first rehab appearance at AAA Memphis

May 13, 2014, 7:04 PM EDT

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Jason Motte — who needed Tommy John elbow surgery last spring and had to miss the entire 2013 season — is very close to rejoining the Cardinals.

According to Jim Hayes of FOX Sports Midwest, the right-hander threw a scoreless inning on 14 pitches Tuesday afternoon in his first appearance with the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds. He struck out three batters in four scoreless appearances for Double-A Springfield before shifting his minor league rehab assignment this week to the Triple-A level.

Motte is scheduled to pitch for Memphis again on Thursday and could be activated from the disabled list next week. He’ll pitch in a setup role initially but might quickly become a backup option at closer for the Cardinals. St. Louis’ current ninth-inning man, Trevor Rosenthal, is 10-for-10 in save opportunities but has an ugly 4.96 ERA and 1.41 WHIP in 16 1/3 frames.

  1. stlouis1baseball - May 14, 2014 at 9:25 AM

    Welcome news…that can’t come soon enough. Hopefully he returns with no flare ups.
    With the issues Garcia and Lyons are having…any good news from the pitching side of things is appreciated.

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