St. Louis Cardinals fans are eagerly waiting to see what their team looks like at full strength after weathering injuries of multiple key players. Well, there might not be a baseball utopia in Busch Stadium any time soon.

Third baseman Nolan Arenado left Saturday's matchup against the San Francisco Giants with left forearm discomfort, according to The Athletic's Katie Woo. The Cards overcame a 3-0 first-inning deficit and bashed the Giants for a 9-4 win, but it could come at a cost.

Arenado exited Wednesday's loss to the Miami Marlins (right elbow contusion) after being hit by a pitch and did not play in the emotional and celebratory game versus San Fran at the historic Rickwood Field Thursday night. He went hitless with a walk before being removed in the eighth inning on Saturday.

It goes without saying that arm-related injuries can be especially damaging for someone who can swing the bat and man the hot corner like the eight-time All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove winner. He is starting to regain his footing following a cold month of May, so halting his momentum is a grossly unappealing scenario for everyone involved.

Hopefully, the issue does not fester and result in yet another member of the Cardinals visiting the injured list. If Nolan Arenado can avoid a negative prognosis, then the St. Louis lineup could finally start living up to its lofty potential.

Cardinals moving up standings despite injuries

St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) fields a ball against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the eighth inning at Busch Stadium.
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

With this victory over the Giants, the Redbirds are 38-37 and a half-game ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks for the third wild card slot in the National League. They are also making up significant ground in the division, trailing the Milwaukee Brewers by only five and a half games. What is most astounding about this recent turn of fortune is that it's coming while Paul Goldschmidt and Arenado underachieve and a few others sit on the shelf.

Willson Contreras could rejoin the MLB roster by Monday after a six-week absence, and Tommy Edman and Lars Nootbaar are not too far behind in their projected returns. To quote beloved fictional manager Lou Brown, “it's starting to come together.” The latest news certainly dampens the good vibes, however.

“Nolan Arenado might have tweaked something in his forearm in his final at-bat, a jam shot that resulted in a weak ground ball,” Woo reported. “No additional info available at this time.”

The 33-year-old is batting .257 and has six home runs through 272 at-bats in 2024. St. Louis was able to get the job done versus San Francisco without him producing on Saturday afternoon.

Outfielder/designated hitter Alec Burleson belted two home runs and five RBIs to continue his breakout year, red-hot left fielder Brendan Donovan extended a six-game hitting streak and rookie shortstop Masyn Winn went 3-for-5 at the plate to raise his batting average back to .300. Perhaps most encouraging of all, Arenado's Cardinals co-star, Paul Goldschmidt, hit his 10th dinger of the season.

St. Louis goes for the series sweep on Sunday, starting at 2:15 p.m. ET. By then, there will ideally be more clarity regarding the status of No. 28.