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Cards option Jimenez, recall Worrell

Cards option Jimenez, recall Worrell

ST. LOUIS -- Kelvin Jimenez is out and Mark Worrell is in.

The Cardinals reached out yet again to Triple-A Memphis, this time recalling relief pitcher Worrell on Sunday and optioning Jimenez to Triple-A. Worrell is the seventh player to make his first appearance on a 25-man roster this year with the Cardinals.

Known for his atypical sidearm delivery, Worrell, 25, is toughest on right-handed hitters, making it extremely difficult for them to pick up the ball coming out of his hand.

"Anything unorthodox is usually more uncomfortable for hitters," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "We'll see how it works in the big leagues."

Jimenez threw 3 1/3 innings out of relief Saturday night but jammed his thumb when he took a swing at the plate. Jimenez allowed three home runs, including a grand slam, in a 14-4 loss to the Pirates.

La Russa said the thumb had bothered Jimenez earlier.

Worrell, who La Russa said has been on the cusp of coming up for the last couple of years, will finally get a crack at the Majors. After going 3-2 with a 3.09 ERA last year with Memphis, Worrell has stifled hitters in 2008. In 21 appearances, Worrell has thrown 24 innings with a 1.88 ERA.

However, it's Worrell's strikeouts-to-walks ratio that has turned the most heads. He's fanned 38 hitters while walking 11.

It is unclear if Worrell would make it to St. Louis in time for Sunday's game, as he was en route from Albuquerque, N.M.

Lee Hurwitz is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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