The Cardinals made the move they had to make this morning -- although it's not likely to be a very popular one -- sending one of their rookie hotshots to Memphis for a veteran retread.
Carlos Martinez was shipped out to Class AAA Memphis where he'll be stretched back out to be a starting pitcher while Victor Marte will be added to the St. Louis bullpen as a fresh arm.
The Cardinals have been very fortunate to be able to overcome injuries to starters Chris Carpenter, Jaime Garcia, Jake Westbrook and John Gast so far this season. But with Michael Wacha expected to make his major league debut Thursday, the Birds are running out of rabbits to pull out of the minor league hat.
So Martinez, who got a chance to get his feet wet in the big leagues as a bullpenner, will head south to regain his stamina and be ready to be summoned as a starter if more health problems pop up... Or if one of the other fill-ins starts to slip.
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Marte is 1-0 with a 2.78 ERA in 22 2/3 minor league innings. He's struck out 23 and walked nine while allowing 22 hits. For his major league career, he's 6-2 with a 7.09 ERA with most of the damage coming in 2010 when he had a 9.76 ERA in 22 games with the Royals. In 2012 with the Cardinals he was 3-2 with a 4.91 ERA. He struck out 36 and walked 14. But Marte was ripped for 50 hits in 40 1/3 innings.