ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak placed a low probability on either left-hander Jaime Garcia or shortstop Rafael Furcal needing offseason surgery to address their respective arm injuries.
Garcia, after receiving multiple opinions on his ailing left shoulder, has begun a rest and rehab program to address his rotator cuff strain. He is expected to have that shoulder re-evaluated in another week or two, but early signs are that the lefty will not need surgery.
The Cardinals, while pleased that Garcia should be able to avoid an invasive procedure, are aware that there is no guarantee the issue doesn't arise again next year. The club does feel confident about the number of internal options available should Garcia not be ready to begin the season in the rotation.
"Clearly, we're going to go into Spring Training holding our breath a little bit with regard to him," Mozeliak said. "But he's progressing right now in his rehab. He's feeling good about that, which is encouraging. But until you really have to ramp it up and put yourself on the mound, it's hard to know for sure."
Furcal still has not thrown since injuring his right elbow in late August. He is expected to begin a throwing program in November and will slowly build his arm strength back up so that he will not be limited when he reports to camp in February. Furcal, who signed a two-year deal last offseason, is set to earn $7 million next year.
"He has a few hurdles to hop before the calendar turns to December," Mozeliak said of Furcal. "That should give us a better idea."