CINCINNATI -- The St. Louis Cardinals placed first baseman Albert Pujols on the 15-day disabled list Thursday, and activated pitcher Joel Pineiro in time to start against the Reds.
Pujols is expected to miss at least three weeks after straining his left calf while running out a ground ball in the seventh inning of the Cardinals' 7-2 win Tuesday at Cincinnati. The six-time All-Star and 2005 National League Most Valuable Player is hitting .347 with 16 home runs and 42 RBIs in 65 games. He is two home runs shy of 300 in his eight-year career.
The move is retroactive to Wednesday.
The right-handed Pineiro, who did not get a decision in Thursday's game, missed 19 games with a strained right groin.
Pineiro had a successful return to the mound, allowing three hits and striking out six in five innings. He allowed two runs.
He is 2-3 with a 4.41 ERA in nine starts.