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Cardinals' Kim Kwang-hyun back in St. Louis, doing better after bout of kidney ailment


The St. Louis Cardinals' South Korean pitcher Kim Kwang-hyun is back in the club's home city after a bout with a kidney ailment had him hospitalized in Chicago over the weekend.

Cardinals' manager Mike Shildt told reporters on Sunday (local time) that Kim is tired but feeling better. Kim will be re-evaluated on Monday.

Kim suffered abdominal pain Friday morning while in Chicago with the rest of the team for a road trip and was taken to the emergency room at a local hospital, where he was diagnosed with renal infarction, caused by a blockage of blood flow to a kidney.

Kim was scheduled to start Sunday's game but was instead placed on the 10-day injured list. The Cardinals remain optimistic that he will rejoin the rotation as soon as he isn't susceptible to bleeding or bruising -- since he's on blood thinners.

Shildt said the Cardinals will try to control Kim's training environment to eliminate such risks.

"Medically, if he's in a controlled setting, he can continue to work out, play catch, throw bullpens, keep his arm strength up," Shildt was quoted as saying by "And when he gets to a point where he feels like he can compete and (not be) vulnerable for contact, he'll get back to being with us."

Kim signed with the Cardinals last December after spending 13 years in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO). He had been an MVP-winning starter in his native country but opened his rookie big league season as the closer before moving into the rotation.

He has been one of the Cardinals' most reliable starters, posting a 0.44 ERA in four starts. He hasn't allowed an earned run in his last 17 innings. (Yonhap)