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Rafael Furcal Injury Leaves St. Louis Cardinals Thin In Infield

The St. Louis Cardinals will have to decide whether to act ahead of the trade deadline to account for Rafael Furcal's back injury.

The St. Louis Cardinals will have to decide whether to act ahead of the trade deadline to account for Rafael Furcal's back injury.
The St. Louis Cardinals will have to decide whether to act ahead of the trade deadline to account for Rafael Furcal's back injury.

The St. Louis Cardinals will likely be without Rafael Furcal on Sunday, according to reporting by Jenifer Langosch, and Furcal's back tightness—surprisingly late in coming, given the shortstop's historical health problems—leaves the Cardinals with no choice but to deal with their thin infield depth. The collapse of Tyler Greene leaves the Cardinals with Daniel Descalso, stretched at the position, as their primary shortstop backup, with Skip Schumake, also stretched at his position, manning second base.

That's not a postseason-caliber middle infield, to say the least, and if the Cardinals are going to be without Furcal for much longer than the weekend they might find their trade deadline capital suddenly consumed by a move for a starting infielder. Shortstops Stephen Drew and Yunel Escobar are both reportedly available; each comes with his own set of questions, but either would be an upgrade both at short while Furcal is gone and at second base once he returns.

John Mozeliak's not known for his impulsivity, Kyle Lohse's premature contract extension aside, but he has until Tuesday to decide whether the Cardinals have enough infielders to make it through the stretch run. Rafael Furcal's back injury is going to play heavily into that.