Socolovich was designated for assignment by the Cardinals on Saturday, Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports. After struggling to a 8.68 ERA and 1.66 WHIP through 18.2 innings (15 games) with the big club this season, the Cardinals decided to oust Socolovich from their 40-man roster. The move clears room for John Brebbia, who had his contract purchased from Triple-A on Saturday. Given Socolovich's major-league experience, the 30-year-old could draw some interest on waivers.
Socolovich gave up two earned runs on two hits over an inning in Sunday's 8-3 win over the Giants. He struck out three. Socolovich's one inning certainly wasn't dull, as he gave up a pair of solo homers yet also struck out the side. The 30-year-old right-hander has now given up four homers over 17.1 innings and at least one hit in all but three of his 13 appearances. Despite pitching to plenty of contact, he's been a bit more consistent in May, Sunday's appearance notwithstanding. He's generated a respectable 3.86 ERA and 6:0 K:BB over the seven innings spanning his five appearances this month.
Socolovich earned his first save of the season in Monday's 9-4 win over the Marlins, giving up an earned run on a Giancarlo Stanton solo home run while allowing one other hit and recording a strikeout. The veteran right-hander has mostly been solid this season with the exception of two disastrous outings in which he surrendered a combined nine earned runs over just two-thirds of an inning. Monday's appearance marked his longest of the season and fourth multi-inning effort overall. Socolovich's ability to gobble up innings when necessary -- such as Monday, when the rest of the bullpen was fatigued from a 14-inning marathon against the Braves on Sunday -- render him a particularly valuable option for manager Mike Matheny.
Socolovich (0-1) gave up an unearned run on one hit over 2.2 innings in Tuesday's 6-5 extra-inning loss to the Blue Jays. He also recorded a strikeout. Socolovich was a tough-luck loser, as he performed superbly after coming on with one out in the ninth. The veteran reliever snuffed out the potential for further damage after the Blue Jays had already taken a 5-4 lead by inducing an inning-ending double play from Kendrys Morales, but had a costly hiccup when he surrendered a pinch-hit double to pitcher Marcus Stroman in the 12th, who eventually scored what would be the winning run. Despite the disappointing outcome, it was the second consecutive strong outing for Socolovich after giving up five earned runs and failing to record an out against the Yankees on April 16.
Socolovich failed to record an out in the eighth inning Sunday, surrendering five earned runs on three hits and two walks. Socolovich had been impressive over his first four trips to the mound, but Sunday's performance was an abject failure. After issuing back-to-back walks to open the frame, the 30-year-old loaded the bases by surrendering a single. Back-to-back doubles by Austin Romine and Ronald Torreyes drove in four runs, and Aaron Hicks' sacrifice fly off Brett Cecil tacked the final run onto Socolovich's ledger. Despite the forgettable night Sunday, the right-hander's ability to pitch multiple innings out of the bullpen should afford him plenty of opportunities as the season unfolds.
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