LEADING OFF: Cardinals getting playful with pitching staff

May 22, 2022, 6:27 AM | Updated: 6:28 pm
St. Louis Cardinals relief pitcher Yadier Molina reacts to giving up a two-run home run to Pittsbur...

St. Louis Cardinals relief pitcher Yadier Molina reacts to giving up a two-run home run to Pittsburgh Pirates' Jack Suwinski during the ninth inning of a baseball game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, May 22, 2022. The Cardinals won 18-4. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

A look at what’s happening around the majors on Monday:



First, Albert Pujols. Then, Yadier Molina.

Anyone else want to pitch for St. Louis this season?

First-year manager Oliver Marmol is definitely mixing fun with wins when it comes to who he puts on the mound.

Exactly a week after the slugging Pujols made his first pitching appearance in the majors, Molina got his turn Sunday, closing out an 18-4 romp at Pittsburgh. As the perennial Gold Glove catcher got loose, Pujols went behind the plate to catch Molina’s warmup tosses.

Both All-Stars finished their one-inning stints with a 36.00 ERA.

Topping out at 69 mph, Molina gave up four runs, including two homers, and four hits. He threw 14 of 20 pitches for strikes, without a strikeout or walk.

Pujols also permitted four runs and two homers in one inning while closing out a rout of San Francisco. Pujols gave up three hits, walked one and struck out none.

Naturally, the two stars poked each other over who threw it best.

“Mine was better. I didn’t give up a double like he did,” Pujols told St. Louis media.

Retorted Molina: “I didn’t walk anybody.”

But it was not all fun and games for St. Louis. Starter Steven Matz lasted only four pitches before being pulled with stiffness in his left shoulder.

“Sometimes stuff comes up,” Matz said. “I felt it a little bit in the bullpen. I was trying to work through it a little bit. … Just try to get through this, get some outs.”

Right-hander Miles Mikolas (3-2, 1.68 ERA) starts at Busch Stadium as the Cardinals open a two-game series against righty José Berríos (3-2, 4.83) and the Blue Jays.


It’ll be Zack Greinke vs. Zach Davies when Kansas City begins a nine-game homestand by taking on the Diamondbacks.

The 38-year-old Greinke is still trying for his first win in his return to the Royals — he made his major league debut with them in 2004, won a Cy Young Award there and stayed with the team for seven seasons.

Greinke is 0-2 with a 3.48 ERA in eight starts. He pitched for Arizona in 2016-19 and was a three-time All-Star there.

Davies is 2-2 with a 4.35 ERA for Arizona.


Yankees setup man Chad Green will have Tommy John surgery, a rare setback this season for the team with the best record in the majors.

The 30-year-old righty had recently gone on the injured list. He was 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 14 games this season.

Green has long been one of New York’s top relievers. He has a 3.17 ERA, 11 saves and 494 strikeouts in 383 2/3 innings for the Yankees since 2016.

Also, the Yankees put outfielder Joey Gallo and catcher Kyle Higashioka on the COVID-19 IL on Sunday. Manager Aaron Boone said neither player had tested positive but both are showing symptoms of the coronavirus.

Ace Gerrit Cole (4-0, 2.89 ERA) was set to start at Yankee Stadium in the series opener against Baltimore.


Rockies right-hander Chad Kuhl returns to Pittsburgh to face his former team to open a three-game series at PNC Park.

The 29-year-old Kuhl was a ninth-round pick of the Pirates in 2013. He spent his first five seasons with Pittsburgh, going 25-30 in 100 games.

Kuhl signed with Colorado as a free agent in the offseason and is off to a nice start with his new team. He’s 3-2 with a 3.86 ERA in seven outings.


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]
21 days ago
Joe Jarzynka...
Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]
21 days ago
FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...
Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]
21 days ago
Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...
Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]
21 days ago
FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...
Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]
21 days ago
FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...
Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]
21 days ago
LEADING OFF: Cardinals getting playful with pitching staff