Rzepczynski cleared to pitch Saturday

Rzepczynski cleared to pitch Saturday

JUPITER, Fla. -- Marc Rzepczynski received clearance from an eye doctor on Friday to resume pitching in games, and the Cardinals intend to waste little time getting the left-hander back in action. Manager Mike Matheny said that the club plans to pitch Rzepczynski in Saturday's game against the Marlins.

"That was the best news I've heard all week," Rzepczynski said. "I'm glad to be able to start my Spring Training again."

Rzepczynski is still not able to wear his contacts because of some lingering inflammation in his left eye. He said, though, that he expects to have no issue pitching without contacts in a day game. He hopes, too, that the inflammation is gone by the time he visits the eye doctor again next Wednesday.

If Rzepczynski gets on the mound this weekend, that will give him two weeks to prepare before the start of the season. He has already missed a week of games from this eye injury. Earlier in camp, he sat a week while nursing some soreness in his left biceps.

Those two interruptions mean that Rzepczynski has only logged four innings of work in Grapefruit League play. He has given up five hits, three runs (one earned), walked two and struck out three. Rzepczynski has thrown twice off the side mound since being hit in the eye by a piece of debris while he was playing golf last Friday.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.