The Cardinals have announced earlier today All Star catcher Yadier Molina has been activated from the 15-day disabled list and will be in tonight's lineup.
In a corresponding move, catcher Tony Cruz will be optioned to Springfield (AA); he's expected to be recalled Tuesday when rosters expand to 40.
Molina had surgery on his thumb July 11 after tearing a ligament sliding into third base two days before. Originally expected to be out for the most of the remainder of hte season, Molina has come back much quicker than expected. After 2 rehab games in Springfield, he's back in the starting lineup.
A.J. Pierzynski will move to a backup role, but will still see game action as the team eases Molina back into an everyday role. Many were expecting the Cardinals to send a pitcher down and carry 3 catchers until Tuesday.
The Cardinals also announced that left hander Marco Gonzales will start game 2 of Saturday's day-night double-header. Gonzales was with the Cardinals earlier in the season, but didn't pitch very well; in 3 starts, Gonzales was 0-2 with a 7.07 ERA, 5.92 FIP, and 2.87 WHIP. Rumor was he didn't trust his plus rated change up and only threw his low 90s fastball.
No corresponding move has been announced, but Tyler Lyons is a safe bet to be sent down.
It worth noting that Memphis is still in the playoff hunt, now without Gonzales, one of their better pitchers. The team could send him back Sunday after his start though. The Redbirds are currently in first in their division; they hold a 3 game lead with 4 games to play.