LOS ANGELES -- Outfielder Oscar Taveras, who has been sidelined by an ankle injury since May 12, is moving closer to a return, farm director John Vuch said on Friday.
Vuch said that Sunday is now the target date for Taveras to be inserted back into the Triple-A lineup. The Cardinals have been conservative with the amount of work they have allowed Taveras to do since he sprained his ankle sliding into second base. He has resumed running and agility drills.
Taveras, ranked by MLB.com as baseball's third-best prospect, has not been placed on the disabled list during this absence.
Other news from the Cardinals' farm system:
• The organization has released left-hander Barret Browning and catcher J.R. Towles. Browning pitched in 22 games for the Cardinals last season when the organization needed a second lefty in the bullpen. He was taken off the 40-man roster during the offseason. Both Towles and Browning played for Triple-A Memphis this season.
• Left-hander Tim Cooney allowed one run on four hits in seven innings for Double-A Springfield on Thursday, though he came out on the losing end. Since being promoted to Double-A, Cooney has allowed four earned runs in 18 innings. He has struck out 21, while walking just three.
• Kolten Wong, ranked by MLB.com as the Cardinals' third-best prospect, entered Friday riding a 12-game hitting streak with Memphis. Over that 12-game stretch, Wong is 24-for-57 with 17 runs scored, 13 extra-base hits and seven RBIs.
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.Less