Sports

Cardinals make roster moves in advance of free agent shopping

St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Matt Bowman warms up before pitching against the Nationals.
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Matt Bowman warms up before pitching against the Nationals. dholtmann@bnd.com

The St. Louis Cardinals announced a series of roster moves Friday that will leave their major league roster at 38 players.

The Cardinals will lose relief pitcher Matt Bowman, who was signed off waivers by the Cincinnati Reds, and likely backup catcher Francisco Pena, who was dropped from the 40-man roster and filed for free agency. Meanwhile, St. Louis reinstated several players from the 60-day disabled list including outfielder Dexter Fowler and pitchers Luke Gregerson, Alex Reyes and Michael Wacha.

Bowman, 27, contributed 149 innings of relief work for the Cardinals over the last three seasons. He struggled to stick on the big league roster last summer, going 0-2 with a 6.26 ERA. Recurrent blisters and numbness in his pitching hand limited him to just 23 innings.

Pena, 28, filled the valuable role as Yadier Molina’s backup as the team elected to work prospect Carson Kelly at triple-A Memphis. The son of former Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates All-Star Tony Pena, appeared in 58 games, batting .203 with a pair of home runs.

On Thursday, reserve infielder Greg Garcia was claimed off waivers by the San Diego Padres. Pitchers Bud Norris and Tyson Ross, as well as first baseman Matt Adams filed for free agency earlier in the week.

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