Cardinals' depth tested by rash of injuries

Cardinals' depth tested by rash of injuries

LOS ANGELES -- One of the primary takeaways manager Mike Matheny talked about after running his first Cardinals Spring Training was the impression left by several players on the cusp of the Majors. This, Matheny would say repeatedly, was an indication that there was a substantial amount of organizational depth.

Depth is always insurance. And now, the Cardinals will find out just how much coverage that insurance can provide.

"We're challenging it," Matheny said, speaking of that depth on Sunday. "I think our fan base should be pleasantly surprised by the different guys we've been able to throw out there and how effective they've been. We'll just continue to throw guys out there and give them an opportunity to take advantage of it."

Lance Berkman became the fourth Cardinals player to land on the disabled list over the past week, making Matt Adams the fourth player moved from the Triple-A roster to the Major Leagues during that span.

Adams, Victor Marte, Eduardo Sanchez and Brandon Dickson all started the 2012 season with Memphis. Each has since been called up to fill varying roles. Marte has emerged as an important piece of the bullpen, and Adams is expected to get regular starts at first base for as long as Berkman is sidelined.

Another two players -- Matt Carpenter and Shane Robinson -- likely would have begun the year in the Minors had the Cardinals not had several injured players coming out of Spring Training. Carpenter has already made 22 starts this year. Robinson has made a dozen.