The St. Louis Cardinals placed Jon Jay on the disabled list Tuesday, and Jay's injury—it's a recurrence of the sprained shoulder he dealt with last month, after bouncing a little too hard off an outfield wall—shows just how thin the Cardinals' depth in center field has become since last year, where Jay was the backup himself for a scuffling Colby Rasmus. Shane Robinson made a hasty return to the 25-man roster in the ensuing roster move, while Skip Schumaker started that afternoon. And with Carlos Beltran's knee injury leaving him benched two games in a row, the Cardinals seem unlikely to risk putting him in center field any time soon.
That leaves Schumaker, who doesn't have the glove for center, and Robinson, who doesn't have the bat for it, as the Cardinals' platoon of desperation in the meantime. Erik Komatsu, their Rule 5 center fielder, was waived and has resurfaced getting regular playing time for the Minnesota Twins; down in the minor leagues, longtime near-prospect Adron Chambers, who tripled in a cup of coffee last season, has turned it around after a slow start at AAA Memphis and is currently hitting .318/.388/.403.
For the moment, the Cardinals seem content to start Robinson and Schumaker out there and hope they scrape along a few runs over replacement level. But if Jon Jay's shoulder injury becomes a more chronic concern, they'll have to deal with this position some other way.
More Cardinals news from SB Nation St. Louis:
- Lance Berkman's injury apparently wasn't what kept him out of the Cardinals lineup Tuesday.
- What will the Cardinals do with Lance Lynn when Chris Carpenter returns from injury?