When it rains, it pours.
According to Jennifer Langosch, the Cardinals pitching staff took another hit tonight when John Gast had to leave the game, after facing just 6 hitters, due to shoulder tightness.
As if that wasn't enough, Jennifer Langosch also reported that Jake Westbrook will likely get a second opinion on his ailing shoulder next week, most likely with Dr. James Andrews. That's never a good sign.
Finally, to top it off, Jennifer reported that the Cardinals are "backing off" Chris Carpenter's throwing program as he didn't feel as good after his last bullpen session.
With Gast likely heading to the DL, Westbrook likely needing longer to rehab his elbow and Carpenter likely needing more time for his comeback, it appears that the Cardinals may have no other choice than to turn to Michael Wacha.
If Gast's injury is short term in nature, the Cards may be able to make due with someone like Joe Kelly or Seth Maness filling in for a start or two. But, if he is going to be out for an extended period of time, the Cardinals with need a more long-term solution and Wacha would be the logical choice.
The service time clock is obviously still a factor, but its not the only factor in these decisions. When you're a team contending for a division title, you've got to put the players on the field that give you the best chance to win.
For now, all we can do is wait for a prognosis on Gast and see what happens next.